Full fee-paying students in Higher Education in Australia

Full fee places for Australian undergraduate students were phased out in 2009 under reforms made by the Gillard government.

Other students may obtain a full fee place (FFP) if they do not receive a Commonwealth supported place, subject to meeting relevant qualifications. Most postgraduate courses do not have Commonwealth supported places available and therefore, all these students are full fee-paying. Fee-paying students are charged the full cost of their course, with no Commonwealth contribution.

Some fee-paying students can obtain loans under the Higher Education Loan Programme, called FEE-HELP loans, to cover all or part of their fees. This is available to Australian citizens, New Zealand citizens and permanent humanitarian visa holders. Undergraduate students who obtain these loans are charged a 20% loan fee on top of the amount borrowed. This does not apply to post graduate courses. Students are able to borrow a lifetime maximum FEE-HELP loan of $112,134 for medicine, dentistry and veterinary science programs and $89,706 for all other programs (adjusted for inflation). In 2005, FEE-HELP loans replaced the Open Learning Deferred Payment Scheme (OLDPS), the Postgraduate Education Loan Scheme (PELS) and the Bridging for Overseas-Trained Professionals Loan Scheme (BOTPLS).