Student Visa Work Rights

Make sure you are aware of the specific rules that could impact your working hours on a student visa.

Studying & working at Deakin

Learn more about the types of work and internship opportunities you can get while completing your studies.

Visa work restrictions

Keep working hours under 48 per fortnight

As an international student at Deakin College, you can work part-time while you are studying, but it is important to be aware of the rules on your student visa.

If you are on a student visa, you are limited to 48 hours of work per fortnight during the trimester and unlimited hours during holidays.  (International students already working in the aged care sector will be exempt from the 48-hour per fortnight work limit until 31 December 2023.)

You won’t be able to work until after your course has commenced. If your employer requires confirmation of the Deakin College holiday period, you can lead them to our website or ask us for an official letter from Deakin College.

Be aware that your visa requires you to be a full-time student (studying at least 3 units per trimester) and complete your course within the duration specified in your electronic Confirmation of Enrolment (eCoE).

If you have dependent family members included on your student visa, they are also eligible to work.

Make sure you are aware of all the working conditions for international students on the Australian Government’s Department of Home Affairs website.

Your Tax File Number

How to get a Tax File Number (TFN)

If you are working in Australia, you will need a Tax File Number (TFN) so that your employer can pay you and you can pay the right amount of tax. This is a number - unique to you - that stays the same even if you change your job, personal details or residency status.

When you start work, your employer will ask you to fill out a Tax File Number declaration to provide them with your TFN.

You can apply for a TFN on the Australian Taxation Office website.

Your rights at work

Everyone is protected by workers’ rights

International students have the same workplace rights as all other workers in Australia.

  • You must be paid at least the minimum wage
  • You must pay tax on your income
  • You must receive a payslip
  • Casual work means you don’t have a fixed number of hours every week.

The Australian Government Department of Education has a range of videos and resources for international students about workplace rights which have been translated into different languages.

International students can contact the Fair Work Ombudsman or phone 13 13 94 for help if they’re having workplace issues, without fear of their visa being cancelled. 

Austrade’s Employability Hub provides international students with resources to enhance their employability and job readiness and information on their work rights.

Find out more about your rights at work.

Sungyun Yoon

"Deakin College helped me settle and adapt to the Australian culture through the support services available for international students. I am also very satisfied with the learning support I got from my teachers as they are very patient and accommodating with any questions I have and offers one-on-one counselling outside class hours."

Diploma of Science

Korean student

Finding a job

Get real-world experience while you study

Once you start your studies at Deakin College, you may wish to think about getting some real-world experience by working part-time, undertaking an internship or volunteering for a cause. Working or volunteering while you study is a fantastic way to expand your life skills and make new friends.

Find out more about working and studying at Deakin.

Once you are a Deakin University student, you will have access to the best university careers service in Australia (Graduate Recruiters Industry Association in 2017 and 2018), DeakinTalent.

Deakin Talent provides an online jobs database and other online careers tools and resources to increase your chances of finding part-time work while you study.

Find out more about DeakinTalent.

Taxation in Australia

Claim your tax benefits

If you’re enrolled to study at Deakin College, you will most likely be regarded as an Australian resident for tax purposes. This means:

  • you pay tax on your earnings at the same rate as other residents
  • you are entitled to the benefits of the Australian tax system, such as the tax-free threshold (or part of it, if you’re here for only part of the financial year)
  • tax offsets
  • generally lower tax rates than a foreign resident.

It is important that you provide your employer with your Tax File Number and that you receive payslips detailing the amount you have earned and the tax you have paid.

Find out more about taxation in Australia.

Rights & responsibilities

Know your rights as an international student

The Australian Government’s Education Services for Overseas Students Act, or ESOS Act, provides consumer protection for international students on a student visa, aims to enhance the quality of the student experience and protects the student visa program.

Find out more about your rights and responsibilities as an international student under the ESOS Act.