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Skilled Graduate (subclass 485)

Skilled Graduate subclass 485The Temporary Skilled Graduate visa offers a great way for international graduates, with an Australian education, to gain valuable work experience before returning home, or to continue on to a more permanent visa. This temporary visa is for international students who have studied for a minimum of 16 months at an Australian educational institution, and received a degree, masters or doctorate. Depending on your situation, the visa is valid for 18 to 48 months, and allows you to live, study and work in the country. 

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Unlike the 457 visa, applicants do not need a job offer from a company. In addition, there are no minimum salary requirements. The visa covers dependents of the main applicant who are in Australia at the time you apply, but family members outside Australia may also apply once the visa is granted. The current processing time is approximately 1-4 months, but graduates can live and work full-time in Australia on a bridging visa while waiting for the decision. At any time, 485 visa holders can submit an Expression of Interest through the SkillSelect system should you want to apply for a 189 or 190 visa.

This is an ON-SHORE only visa – you cannot apply from overseas. At the time was written, the fee associated with the visa was $AU 1,440.

 Do you need to take another course to qualify for this visa? Drake Student Recruitment can help! Send your inquiry here.

There are 2 streams for this visa:

Skilled Graduate visa streams

1. Graduate work stream

This is for international students who graduate with the skills and qualification related to a job on the Skilled Occupation List (SOL). The visa allows you to work for 18 months from the date you receive it.

To qualify, you are required to:

  • nominate an occupation on the Skilled Occupation List (SOL). You can only select 1, and this cannot be changed.

  • provide evidence that you had applied for a skills assessment for your nominated skilled occupation by a relevant assessing authority (ie. Engineers Australia or AHPRA for medical qualifications), or that that this has been successfully completed.

  • prove your degree(s), diploma(s), or trade qualification(s) used to meet the Australian study requirement is closely related to your nominated skilled occupation.

  • meet the 2-year Australian study requirement by proving you studied in the past 6 months in a CRICOS-registered course. The program has to be taught in English.

2. Post-study work stream

IMPORTANT: This stream is ONLY for students who received their first student visa on, or after, November 5, 2011.

This visa is for international students who have graduated with a higher education degree, no matter what subject was studied. The visa is valid for 2-4 years, depending on the highest qualification you achieved in Australia:

  • 2-year visa = Bachelor Degree / Bachelor Degree with Honours / Masters by Coursework Degree / Masters (extended) Degree

  • 3-year visa = Masters by Research Degree

  • 4-year visa = Doctoral Degree


485 visa criteria

When you are applying, you must

  • hold a valid visa (student or bridging)

  • must be under 50 years old

  • be in Australia

  • provide evidence of competent English through either Band 6 for each skill in the IELTS test, or score ‘B’ in each skill of the Occupational English Test (OET). OR be a  citizen of  AND hold a valid passport for, the UK, USA, Canada, New Zealand, or Ireland. Learn more about the IELTS and OET English tests here.
  • have health insurance in Australia (either Medicare, OSHC, or private cover)

  • you may also have to seek accreditation from the industry body associated with your skills/qualifications (ie. Engineers Australia)

  • must meet health & character requirements


Applying for the Visa

For ore detailed information about this visa, please visit the Department of Immigration and Border Protection website

You can find the document checklist here


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