Skilled Graduate Visa (Subclass 485)

The onshore Skilled Graduate visa (Subclass 485) is a TEMPORARY visa for international students in Australia who are unable to meet the requirements for a Permanent or Provisional (Temporary) Skilled Visa. The Subclass 485 visa enables former international students to complete a post-graduate professional year, gain skilled work experience or improve their English.


To be eligible for this visa your nominated occupation must be on the current Skilled Occupations List, but you are not required to do the Points Test and there is no skills assessment (though you must have applied for it). Specifically you must:

  • hold or have held an eligible student visa in the last 6 months
  • be under 45 years of age when your application is lodged
  • nominate an occupation worth 50 or 60 points on the current Skilled Occupations List that is closely related to your skills and qualifications
  • have APPLIED to have your skills assessed for your nominated occupation
  • have met the Australian study requirement in the last 6 months and
  • have a score of at least IELTS 6 in all components.
Subclass 572, 573 or 574 visa holders

If you are an international student who held a Subclass 572, 573 or 574 visa on 8 February 2010, you can apply for a Subclass 485 visa before 1 January 2013, if your nominated occupation is listed either on the current SOL or on the previous oneRight-click to download the previous Skilled Occupations List (which was replaced on 1 July 2010 by the current one)..

The Australian Study Requirement

To meet the Australian study requirement, you must have completed one or more Degree, Diploma or Trade qualifications awarded by an Australian educational institution as a result of a course or courses -

  • that are registered on the Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS)
  • that involved a total of at least 2 academic years study (minimum 92 weeks) in Australia that was completed in no less than 16 calendar months and
  • for which all study undertaken was in English.
  • that were closely related to your nominated occupation and
  • undertaken on a visa that allowed you to study in Australia

Pathway to Permanent Residence

As a Skilled Graduate visa holder you can lodge an application for a PERMANENT Skilled Visa at any time during the 18 months of your visa, but you will need to be able to meet the requirements for lodging a valid application.

The visas you can apply for are the Skilled Independent Visa (subclass 885), the Skilled Sponsored Visa (subclass 886) and the Skilled Regional Sponsored Visa (subclass 487), as well as any of the Employer Sponsored Visas. The Employer Sponsored visas are not points-tested.

To be granted one of the Skilled visas, the basic requirements are that:

  • you have nominated a 50 or 60 point occupation that is on the current SOL
  • you have had your skills assessed by the relevant assessing authority as suitable for working in your nominated occupation
  • the study you used to qualify for your temporary visa must be closely related to your nominated occupation
  • you have COMPETENT English (IELTS 6) and
  • you meet the pass mark under the Points Test

The Employer Sponsored visas have their own sets of requirements.