ABSTUDY Award types

There are 7 awards that describe eligibility for the different payments and allowances available under ABSTUDY.

Your eligibility for an award will depend on your study, training and personal circumstances.

You should only submit your claim for ABSTUDY if you meet the general eligibility criteria and the eligibility criteria for an award. We will then determine your correct ABSTUDY allowance and payment rate.

Schooling A Award

This award covers primary or secondary students. We pay ABSTUDY to the parents or guardians of eligible students who are:

  • 15 or younger and:
    • a full time secondary student
    • living at home, or not approved for the living away from home or independent rates of ABSTUDY, or
  • 14 or older at 1 January in the year of study and:
    • a full time primary school student
    • living at home

ABSTUDY payment rates and allowances

When you claim ABSTUDY under the Schooling A Award, we’ll confirm which payment rate you will get. You may automatically get:

You can also apply for:

  • Away from Base assistance to attend residential schools if you are a distance education or correspondence student
  • ABSTUDY Fares Allowance to attend approved Away from Base activities

Schooling B Award

This award covers primary or secondary students who are:

  • 16 or older, or
  • 15 and in state care or independent because:
    • you are an orphan
    • you have special adult status in a traditional community
    • you have, or have had, a dependent child
    • you are caring for, or have custody of, another person's dependent child
    • you have spent more than a total of 6 months in lawful custody
    • it is unreasonable for you to live at home, or
    • your parents can’t take care of you because they are in prison, missing, mentally incapacitated or living in a nursing home

These students must be:

  • doing full time primary school studies, or
  • doing full time secondary school studies

This award also covers primary or secondary students who are:

  • any age and doing full time secondary studies at an educational institution other than a secondary school, meet the ABSTUDY progress and duration of assistance rules and:
    • have met the minimum requirements for leaving school in your state or territory, or
    • have an exemption letter from the relevant education authority allowing you to go to TAFE or another non-school institution, or
  • younger than 16, approved to live away from home, and:
    • a full time secondary school student, or
    • need to repeat the final year of primary school before you start secondary studies

ABSTUDY payment rates and allowances

When you claim ABSTUDY under the Schooling B Award, we’ll confirm which payment rate you will get. You may automatically get:

You can also apply for:

Eligible boarding institutions can apply for the Under 16 Boarding Supplement.

Your family may be able to get Family Tax Benefit instead of ABSTUDY if you are a dependent full time student, aged 16 to 19 and living at home. Use the Family Assistance – Youth Allowance Comparison Estimator to work out the best payment option for your family.

Tertiary Award

This award covers full time tertiary students and apprentices.

Students

If you are a student, you need to:

  • be a tertiary student with a full time or concessional study load
  • meet the ABSTUDY progress and duration of assistance rules, and
  • have met the minimum requirements for leaving school in your state or territory, or have an exemption letter from the relevant education authority allowing you to go to TAFE or another tertiary institution

ABSTUDY payment rates and allowances

When you claim ABSTUDY under the Tertiary Award as a student, we’ll confirm which payment rate you will get. You may automatically get:

You can also apply for:

Apprentices

An Australian Apprentice is a person who is registered and undertaking a full time apprenticeship or traineeship under the Australian Apprenticeship scheme.

If you are an apprentice, you need to:

  • be a full time apprentice, trainee, or trainee apprentice in the Australian Apprenticeships scheme, and
  • have met the minimum requirements for leaving school in your state or territory, or have an exemption letter from the relevant education authority allowing you to do an apprenticeship

Read more about apprenticeships on the Australian Apprenticeships website.

ABSTUDY payment rates and allowances

When you claim ABSTUDY under the Tertiary Award as an apprentice, we’ll confirm which payment rate you will get. You may automatically get:

You can also apply for Additional Assistance.

Part time Award

This award covers part time students who are:

  • any age and doing tertiary study, or
  • 18 or older at 1 January in the year of study and doing secondary study

ABSTUDY payment rates and allowances

When you claim ABSTUDY under the Part time Award, we’ll confirm if you will automatically get Incidentals Allowance.

You can also apply for:

Testing and Assessment Award

This award covers students who need to travel for tests, assessments or interviews before beginning their studies. We can help you attend up to 2 testing and assessment events each year if you:

  • are doing tests or assessments for the Indigenous Youth Mobility Program, or you need to travel away from your usual home for a normal tertiary course admission test or interview
  • can’t be assessed on your previous study, and
  • are not receiving, and won’t receive, any other significant form of financial help for the test or interview

ABSTUDY payment rates and allowances

When you claim ABSTUDY under the Testing and Assessment award, you will not get any payments automatically. You can apply for:

Master’s and Doctorate Award

This award covers master’s and doctorate students who:

  • are enrolled in an approved master’s degree or doctorate course
  • have a full time or concessional study load, and
  • are not receiving, and won’t receive, any other form of financial help like the Australian Postgraduate Award

ABSTUDY payment rates and allowances

When you claim ABSTUDY under the Master’s and Doctorate Award, we’ll confirm which payment rate you will get. You may automatically get:

You can also apply for:

  • Additional Incidentals Allowance
  • Away from Base assistance
  • Thesis Allowance
  • Assistance to pay Commonwealth Supported Places commitment, previously known as HECS, or compulsory course fees
  • Relocation Allowance or ABSTUDY Fares Allowance
  • Additional Assistance
  • Student Start-up Loan

Student or Australian Apprentice in Lawful Custody Award

This award covers students and apprentices in a correctional institution, remand centre or youth training centre who are:

  • studying an approved course or doing a full time apprenticeship, traineeship, or trainee apprenticeship under the Australian Apprenticeship Scheme, and
  • in lawful custody for more than 2 weeks

Read more about apprenticeships on the Australian Apprenticeships website.

ABSTUDY payment rates and allowances

When you claim ABSTUDY under the Student or Australian Apprentice in Lawful Custody Award, we’ll confirm if you can get Lawful Custody Allowance.

If you’re a student and have permission from your correctional institution to attend classes, you can apply for Away from Base assistance.

Page last updated: 22 June 2016

This information was printed Sunday 4 December 2016 from humanservices.gov.au/customer/enablers/abstudy-award-types It may not include all of the relevant information on this topic. Please consider any relevant site notices at humanservices.gov.au/siteinformation when using this material.