International students who wish to take a break from study are required to either apply for an intermission or a short term leave of absence.
What is an intermission?
An intermission is an approved break from study. When an intermission is approved, the period of the break will either be for a whole trimester (up to a maximum of two consecutive trimesters) or, if the intermission is applied for after a trimester begins, for the remainder of the current trimester.
Standard 13 of the National Code states that a registered provider can only allow a student to apply for intermission (leave of absence) on the grounds of compassionate or compelling circumstances. Examples of compassionate or compelling circumstances could be where the students has an illness where a medical certificate states that the student is unable to attend classes, the serious illness or death of a family member or some other compassionate or compelling circumstance that is beyond the control of the student and for which the student can provide evidence.
Can I remain in Australia while on intermission?
DIBP advised in August 2015 that students are required to depart Australia within 28 days of the commencement of the intermission period. If you choose not to depart Australia within 28 days, you are likely to be contacted by DIBP and asked to provide compelling evidence as to why you could not depart Australia. If you are unable to provide compelling evidence, you are likely to have your visa cancelled. If you are not sure if your reason for remaining in Australia is compelling, you are strongly encouraged to discuss your situation with DIBP within the first 28 days of your intermission period.
How do I apply for intermission?
To apply for an intermission, follow the simple steps below:
- Log into StudentConnect and apply for intermission online.
- Once completed, you will need to make an appointment with a Faculty Course Adviser who will discuss your new course plan with you. Please ask your Course Adviser to indicate your new expected completion date.
- Once you have discussed your intermission with a Faculty Course Adviser, you will need to make an appointment with an International Student Adviser (ISA). You must bring all of your supporting documentation with you when you meet the ISA. Your intermission can not be approved unless you provide the relevant supporting documentation.
- If your application for intermission is approved, the ISA will cancel your current CoE and issue a new CoE for the trimester in which you will re-commence your study.
- It is usually expected that you leave Australia when you are on intermission. You should seek permission from the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) if you wish to remain in Australia during your period of intermission.
Please be advised that intermission can only be approved on compelling or compassionate circumstances (see above).
Note: Higher Degree by Research (HDR) students do NOT follow the above procedure. HDR students should fill in the online request for intermission for HDR students. ALL other students MUST follow the above procedure.
What is a short term leave of absence?
If you need to take a short break of up to 10 working days during a compulsory study period (T1 and T2) or if you intend to return to Australia 3 or more (up to 10) working days late after the start of the trimester, you should apply for a short term leave of absence. Please note a short term leave of absence is not required over the T3 period unless you are enrolled in T3.
You can apply for a short term leave of absence to attend a wedding overseas, return home to visit a sick relative or have a minor medical procedure yourself.
You should speak to an International Student Adviser on your campus for information about applying for a short term leave of absence.
How do I apply for a short term leave of absence?
Sometimes it may be necessary for international students to either leave Australia for a short period during the trimester or return late for the start of the trimester.
We understand that there may be situations that require this and students can apply for a short term leave of absence for up to 10 working days in certain circumstances.
Please be aware that ALL students are required to return to Australia for the start of each trimester and should not take leave from the University while your course is in session without prior approval. Students are expected to know trimester start dates and these can be found in the important dates section of the Deakin website.
To apply for a short term leave of absence, you should apply online and provide the following documentation:
Note: You must upload your documentation with your application. Your application cannot be assessed without the supporting documentation.
1. A copy of your air ticket indicating the dates of your departure from and return to Australia. (Please note that leave in excess of 10 working days can not be granted for a short term leave of absence. If your intended leave is longer than this, you will need to apply for intermission for the remainder of the trimester.
2. Documents indicating the reason for your intended leave of absence. This documentation will depend on why you are applying for a leave of absence. Please be advised that a short term leave of absence will only be approved in compelling or compassionate circumstances. Once you have submitted your written application and provided the documentation required, your campus ISA will assess your application.
3.If your request is approved, the ISA will send you an approval letter which you should keep with you when you return to Australia in case you are asked for proof of your leave at the airport.
Examples of acceptable reasons for a short term leave of absence include:
Sudden illness or death of a family member, returning home for short term medical treatment, to attend a wedding, to attend a funeral, unexpected or sudden family problem that requires your presence.
Unacceptable reasons for a short term leave of absence include:
Not knowing when the trimester starts, unnecessary (elective or cosmetic) surgery (this can be done during University holidays), unavailability of air tickets to return to Australia on time for the start of trimester (plan your trip early and ensure you are able to come back on time), staying home for an extended holiday. Once your short term leave of absence has been approved, you should contact your Unit Chairs to advise them of your absence and ask for their assistance to catch up on anything that you may miss during your absence.
Important note: Unapproved leave may result in cancellation of your CoE.
Please contact an International Student Adviser on your campus if you have any questions about a short term leave of absence.