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Are you a recent graduate considering your further in Australia? The Temporary Graduate Visa (subclass 485) has been a pathway for international graduates to stay longer in Australia, but recent changes are shaking things up. Let’s break down the key updates you need to be aware of when applying for a 485 visa 

Tougher English requirements

Previously set at an IELTS overall score of 6.0 (nothing below 5), the English proficiency requirement for the Visa 485 has been raised to a minimum of IELTS 6.5 overall (or equivalent), with no band score falling below 5.5. This shift is to ensure that you have strong English skills to join the Australian job market. The new English requirement is expected to be applied early 2024.  

Location matters: Apply from within Australia

From November 2023, recent graduates must submit their Visa 485 applications while in Australia. Applications from outside the country will no longer be accepted. Also, please note that you are still required to lodge your 485-visa application within 6 months of the course completion date.  

Age limit adjustment

The maximum age to apply for the Visa 485 may be reduced from 50 years to 35 years old, but it has not been announced officially yet. This alteration shows that Australia Government has been encouraging young graduates to stay further in Australia as they can work and contribute to Australia for a long term.  

Revised visa duration

The Visa 485 duration is reverting to its standard lengths: 2 years for bachelor’s and coursework master’s graduates, and 3 years for master’s by research and PhD graduates.  

Given the shorter duration of a Temporary Graduate Visa, you should have a plan for your PR pathway in advance, so you can apply for another visa right after your 485 visa finishes. Contact our Migration Agents today on 07 3003 1899 or if you wish to know which visa option is best for you.  

The 485 Replacement Stream will be discontinued

The 485 Replacement Stream is designed for former or current 485 visa holders who lost time staying in Australia due to the Covid 19 restrictions. Graduates will need to adhere to the standard Visa 485 application process without the alternative pathways provided during the pandemic. 

Recognition of online study during Covid for Visa 485

The good news is that online studies undertaken due to Covid registration are still considered when applying for the Visa 485. This acknowledgment caters to the unique circumstances that graduates faced during the pandemic, ensuring their efforts aren’t ignored in the visa application process. 


These expected changes in Temporary Graduate Visa 485 reflect Australia’s commitment to aligning its visa policies with new scenarios while maintaining standards for graduates entering its workforce. Aspiring graduates should proactively adapt to these adjustments, considering timelines, English proficiency, and the need to apply from within Australia. 

These updates might require a shift in your approach, but with careful planning and preparation, you can still turn your Australian dreams into a successful reality. Stay tuned for more insights and updates from us when you prepare for study and visa application in Australia.  

How can SOL Migration assist you with a 485 visa?

SOL Migration has a strong team of 4 experienced Registered Migration Agents. Our Registered Migration Agents will assess your eligibility and guide you throughout all the application process. We will assist you in preparing all the relevant documents for your application.

Contact us today on 07 3003 1899 or fill out the enquiry form. Our team will contact you within 24 hours at the latest!