Approved courses and institutions

You must study an approved course at an approved institution to get Youth Allowance as a student, Austudy, or Pensioner Education Supplement.

If you get a letter saying you’re not approved to get a student payment there’s still time to change your study options. Information on this page will help you to pick an approved course and institution.

Payments this applies to

You must study an approved course with an approved institution to get:

You can’t get Austudy if you’ve already done a doctorate.

You can’t get Pensioner Education Supplement if you’ve already done a:

  • masters, or
  • doctorate

There can sometimes be different course and provider criteria for ABSTUDY.

Approved courses and institutions

Approved courses of study may include:

  • secondary school course
  • special school course
  • school based apprenticeship
  • traineeship
  • pre-vocational or vocational education course
  • a course preparing you for tertiary study
  • a TAFE or university course
  • English as a Second Language course

Approved institutions may include:

  • secondary school
  • special school
  • TAFE or a registered training organisation
  • higher education institution, like a university

Approved VET courses

To be an approved course of study for Youth Allowance, Austudy or PES, Vocational Educational Training (VET) courses that are at diploma level or higher must be:

  •  a course approved for the VET Student Loan (VSL), and
  •  be done with an institution approved to provide VSL courses.

You won’t need to take out a VSL to get a payment from us. The course and institutions only need to be able to offer it.

Go to the Federal Register of Legislation for the VET Student Loans (Course and Loan Caps) Determination for a list of approved courses.

Go to the Department of Education and Training website for a list of approved course providers.

If you’re applying for ABSTUDY different criteria may apply.

Approved higher education courses

For a higher education course to be approved for Youth Allowance, Austudy or PES, the institution must be:

This includes:

  • HECS-HELP
  • FEE-HELP
  • OS-HELP, and
  • SA-HELP

You won’t have to take out a HELP loan to get a payment from us. The course only needs to be eligible for it.

Go to Providers that offer Commonwealth assistance on the StudyAssist website for a list of approved higher education providers.

Read more about HELP on the Department of Education and Training website.

Approved masters courses

If you’re doing a combined masters degree it can be done as a single combined course or as separate courses.

Go to Student Assistance (Education Institutions and Courses) Determination on the Federal Register of Legislation website for a list of approved masters courses.

Approved courses for current students

If you’re already getting a student payment, and you enrolled and started studying before 1 January 2018, you’ll keep getting your payment, even if your course is no longer an approved course.

You’ll get it until the end of your course unless there’s a break in your payment or you stop studying the course. If you withdraw from your course and then re-enrol in the same course, we won’t reinstate your payment.

Page last updated: 10 January 2018