Migrating to Australia – Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Want information on migrating to Australia?

Here are useful links to provide information on migration, eligible occupations and qualifications assessment for intending migrants to get you started.

Before asking a question or posting a comment about migration to Australia please check this section to ensure your question has not already been answered.


Q 1. How can I get more detailed information regarding the qualification assessment process for my occupation, and how do I apply to migrate to Australia?

A 1. To obtain general information on general skilled migration to Australia you need to read Booklet 6: General Skilled Migration, which is available online from the booklets section of the Department of Immigration and Citizenship website.


The Australian Department of Immigration and Citizenship web site has the Australian Skills Recognition Information (ASRI) page. This page tells you the eligibility requirements for each occupation category.

Go to the ASRI website – http://www.immi.gov.au/asri/

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) website provides more detailed descriptions of typical tasks for your chosen occupation.


Australia uses a points system to assess eligibility for immigration. This is explained in Booklet 6: General Skilled Migration. The ASRI web page lists the the points for your chosen occupation

There are several different assessing authorities for the range of occupations listed on the skilled occupation list (SOL). The ASRI web page lists the assessing authority for your chosen occupation. It also has the assessing authority contact details, including a link to the assessing authorities website.

Typically the assessing authorities provide documents that can be downloaded, including assessment handbooks which provide specific details on assessment methods, qualifications required, evidence required for qualifications, application procedures and forms. Read all this information thoroughly.


Q 2. Do you know any websites or other sources where overseas to improve their professional and informal English language?

A 2. Attend activities run by professional and trade organisations. A good starting point is your occupation or industry association. These organisations have special interest group events which are advertised on their web site. Most are open to the general public.

The Australia Broadcasting Commission (the ABC) website provides a wide range of videos and podcasts you can download. http://www.abc.net.au/ Professional and trade organisations also has a range of podcasts available from their technical events

Project Australia – Land that Engineering Job in Australia provides further details and advice on internet searching techniques to find engineering organisations and finding general and technical video and podcasts. The technique applies to all occupations.


Q 3. I have done my undergraduate degree in Pakistan in 2005. Previously I completed my Associate Diploma (3years). I have more than 8 years work experience after completing my diploma. How do I choose the category of occupation?

A 3. For qualification assessment you will be considered to have either (a) an associate diploma with 8 years relevant experience, or (b) a degree with 3 years relevant experience. Your work experience before you completed your degree will not count as professional experience – it will not be considered relevant professional experience as you were not degree qualified then.

In any situation, only work experience relevant to the occupation you have selected in your application is considered.

In making your choice you need to consider the best combination of points toward a visa application, relevant work experience for assessment of your qualification and for visa points, and ease of qualification accreditation.

The Australian Department of Immigration and Citizenship web site has the Australian Skills Recognition Information (ASRI) page. This page tells you the eligibility requirements for each occupation category.

Go to the ASRI website – http://www.immi.gov.au/asri/
Once you have selected your occupation code you need to go to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) website to obtain a fuller description of typical tasks for your chosen occupation.


Q 4. My IELTS scores are L= 6 , R=6 , W=5.5 and speaking 6.5 ( Academic ) with an average of 6, Can I apply for qualification assessment of not?

A 4. An average is not good enough. You did not pass the test. You must have 6 or more in all categories for your occupation. So you will have to repeat the test within two years of the original test and get 6 or more in the writing segment.


Q 5. Do I need to submit my IELTS score while applying for skill assessment or can I arrange to report my score after applying for skill assessment. There are two types of IELTS tests (Academic and General ). Which one of these should I take?

A 5. You must include an original English language test (IELTS) result with your application for certain occupations. You must arrange for the result to be forwarded directly to the assessing authority from the Test Centre.

Unless you are planning to go into teaching, for most professions you only need the general test. Their are specific English test requirements for certain occupations.

Here is an extract from the IELTS handbook.

The Academic Module assesses whether a candidate is ready to study or train in the medium of English at an undergraduate or postgraduate level. Admission to undergraduate and postgraduate courses should be based on the results of this module.

The General Training Module emphasises basic survival skills in a broad social and educational context. General Training is suitable for candidates who are going to English-speaking countries to complete their secondary education, to undertake work experience or training programs not at degree level, or for immigration purposes to Australia, Canada and New Zealand. The General Training Module is not offered at all test administrations.”

You can get more information from the IELTS website: http://www.ielts.org.


Q 6. I am the secondary applicant to my wife’s visa application, I would like to know whether my skills need to be assessed or do I need to take any kind of licence in order to work in Australia?

A 6. The ASRI web page lists occupation licensing requirements. They vary in the different States.

It will greatly help your chances of getting a job if you have your qualifications assessed by the relevant assessing authority. Australian employers are worried about the quality of qualifications from some overseas countries. If you can show Engineers Australia accreditation, it removes that concern.


Q 7. I have completed my degree in India and I don’t have any work experience. Can my degree in be accredited in Australia?

A 7. The requirement for work experience for qualification assessment depends on your occupation. For example: engineers do not have to have work experience for qualifications assessment but computer professionals must have 4 years or more depending on the type and level of work and type of qualifications. In theory it is possible to be accredited without work experience; in practice it will be difficult. Also with no experience you will find it difficult to get a job.


For FAQs from engineers go to:  FAQs for Engineering Migrants to Australia

Make informed decisions on one of the biggest steps you will take in your life – your migration to new opportunities. Understand the Australian general skilled migrant scheme and the points system, eligible occupations and qualifications assessment. It is wise to seek the assistance of a registered migration agent. (without a migration agent you have only a 50% chance of successful application)  Having a good knowledge of the Australian migration and qualifications assessment requirements will enable you gain the most value and the best outcome – to reduce the cost and time to make a new life in Australia.