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As an Australian student you will be applying for a Commonwealth supported place, so part of your degree will be paid for by the Australian Government.
As an Australian Citizen, you are eligible for a range of deferral schemes provided by the Australian Government under the Higher Education Loan Programme (HELP).
What types of loans are available under HELP?
There are three types of loans available:
HECS-HELP: For eligible Commonwealth supported students.
FEE-HELP: For eligible fee paying students.
OS-HELP: For eligible Commonwealth supported students who want to study overseas.
How does it work?
If you are eligible for HECS-HELP or FEE-HELP support, you can either pay your student contribution amount up front when you enrol in units, or take out a HELP loan from the Commonwealth Government and repay the loan later through the income tax system.
If you want to study overseas, and you are awarded OS-HELP assistance, you can receive an amount of up to $5000 over six months to assist with the cost of overseas study. You will be eligible to receive two OS-HELP loans over separate six month periods. You don't have to make any repayments on your accumulated HELP debts until your income reaches a minimum threshold (which is $47 195 in the 2011 - 2012 financial year). Under these arrangements, universities set the Commonwealth Supported student contribution amount for each unit within ranges set by the Australian Government.
The fee structure
The fee structure varies between Australian universities. The student contribution amount for a Commonwealth supported student commencing a new course at Murdoch University in 2012 is listed below (the amount is that which would be paid by a full time student enrolled only in units in the particular band).
National Priorities: $4520* (mathematics, statistics and science), based on a 24 point load (1 year, full time).
Band 1 units: $5648* (humanities, behavioural science, social studies, education, foreign languages, visual and performing arts units).Based on a 24 point load (1 year, full time).
Band 2 units: $8050* (computing, built environment, other health, allied health, engineering, surveying and agriculture).
Band 3 units: $9425* (law, veterinary science, accounting, administration, economics and commerce).
Note - the tuition fee rates for undergraduate and postgraduate students enrolled as domestic tuition fee students are significantly higher.
How to manage these loans
myUniAssist is a database that students are able to use to keep track of their HELP debt during university. This system doesn't show your current HELP balance or display repayments you've made but it can be used to see how much Commonwealth Assitance you've received.
We recommend that prospective students and parents familiarise themselves with HECS-HELP and FEE-HELP by visiting the Study Assist website.
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