Sponsored students

More than 400 of our international students are sponsored and receive financial assistance to attend La Trobe.

International students can be sponsored to study at La Trobe. This means students can receive financial assistance with their tuition fees from an overseas government, organisation or company – and some sponsors provide a living allowance as well.

While private individuals, relatives or benefactors can also provide financial assistance, they’re not considered sponsors.

Here’s where you can find out more about how to become a sponsor or a sponsored student. We’ve also got some tips and information for current sponsored students.

Information for sponsors

New sponsor organisations are required to complete an International Sponsorship Registration Form [PDF 284KB]. Each student who is sponsored will be required to submit an authorised financial guarantee when accepting an offer to a La Trobe program..

If you’re looking for further information, contact us for further information about the sponsor registration process and Financial Guarantee Letter requirements.

Some sponsors will undertake monitoring visits to meet with students directly and discuss study progress and any other relevant issues. Our Sponsored Programs team can assist you with booking a meeting room for your visits and arranging student meeting times.

You should contact the team to discuss arrangements at least two weeks prior to your planned visit.

Prospective sponsored students

Before we can register you as a sponsored student, your sponsor organisation must be registered with La Trobe as an approved sponsor.

Contact us to check your potential sponsor's registration status. If they aren’t registered, ask your sponsor to complete and return an International sponsorship registration form [PDF 284 KB].

When accepting your offer to study at La Trobe, you or your sponsor or agent must provide a Financial Guarantee Letter to your Admissions Officer along with your completed Offer Acceptance Form.

This letter must be on your sponsor's official letterhead and signed by an authorised person from your sponsor organisation.

Your letter also needs to include:

  • the name of your sponsor organisation
  • your full name
  • the name of the study program/s you’re sponsored to undertake
  • advice regarding the level of tuition fees that are covered by the sponsorship
    • our preference is a reference to 'Full tuition fee coverage for the period of sponsorship', rather than reference to a fixed dollar sponsorship amount
    • if your sponsorship is capped at an annual dollar amount this must be expressed in A$ and the letter must state whether the student or sponsor is responsible for managing any difference between this amount and your tuition fees
  • a statement that La Trobe University is the institution where the sponsored study will be undertaken
  • a statement discussing your OSHC requirements, such as if you’ll need single cover or family cover, and whether the sponsor organisation or La Trobe will organise your cover
  • invoicing contact details for your sponsor (name, position title, email, telephone, mailing address)
  • academic reporting contact details for your sponsor (name, position title, email, telephone, mailing address)
  • a dated signature and printed name of the authorising individual from the sponsor organisation.

If your financial guarantee doesn't cover the whole period of your degree, then you must also sign in a fees liability letter in which you agree to be responsible for fees where your sponsorship has expired.

If you have an Australian student visa, you need to have OSHC for you (and your family, if you are accompanied) for the duration of your visa. Many sponsorships cover the cost of OSHC. If your sponsor has organised OSHC cover for you already, please ensure you provide evidence of this existing cover to your Admissions Officer when accepting your offer at La Trobe.

If La Trobe is organising OSHC on your behalf, you’ll be required to use our preferred provider Medibank. Make sure your sponsor's level of OSHC cover (single or family) is stated clearly on your Financial Guarantee Letter.

If your sponsorship only covers single OSHC, you’ll be required to pay the family component upfront to obtain a family visa. If your family will be joining you at a later date, you can upgrade your existing OSHC policy by visiting an OSHC representative on campus in the La Trobe International Office.

Once we’ve organised your OSHC, you’ll receive a certificate of insurance by email. If your OSHC has expired prior to your course completion and you need to extend it, please follow the steps outlined in the OSHC renewal form and visit La Trobe International to complete an OSHC extension request.

Find out more information about Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC).

When you arrive on campus, please visit La Trobe International to register, finalise any outstanding issues in relation to your offer, and obtain your enrolment pack. Every Orientation we run a special session just for sponsored students. Come along to meet the sponsored programs team and understand more about how we support you.

Current sponsored students

The Sponsored Programs team provides administrative support to sponsored students and their sponsors. Our staff can:

  • answer your questions about your sponsorship arrangements
  • liaise with external sponsors and other parts of the University on your behalf
  • refer you to a wide range of on-campus support available to assist with settling into life at La Trobe and achieving academic success.

The Sponsored Programs team is available for one-on-one advice sessions at the Bundoora Campus in ASK La Trobe Help Zone located on Level 1, Borchardt Library. You can visit them on Wednesdays from 11.00 am to 1.00 pm during semesters, or make an appointment to visit them at another time.

By accepting your offer as a sponsored student, you’re agreeing that we can contact your sponsor when we need to. For example, we’re required to keep your sponsor updated on your academic progress and any matters that might affect your academic progress. We can also help you liaise with your sponsor on other issues as required.

Once you enrol, you’ll be able to view your assessed fees for the academic year in your Statement of Account via your StudentOnLine account.

If you’re registered as sponsored, the fee amount owing should be A$0 (subject to your scholarship arrangements). If you have a fee amount owing or receive notification from the Fees Unit that your tuition fee payment is overdue, please contact us for advice.

Any changes to your course must be approved by your sponsor. You’ll need to obtain your sponsor's written approval if you require advanced standing, a later start, leave of absence, under-load, extension, course transfer or any other change to your enrolment.

Once you’ve started studying, you and/or your sponsor must provide an updated Financial Guarantee Letter:

  • every semester for coursework degrees and every year for research degrees
  • if your study program or sponsorship timeframe changes
  • if you pass any conditional period stated in your original Financial Guarantee Letter and need to have your sponsorship re-approved.

Please provide the updated letter to Sponsored Programs team as soon as you receive it from your sponsor.

You need to complete your studies within the period specified on your Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE). This is a condition of your student visa.

If you’re a coursework student and had academic progress issues, or have experienced compassionate and compelling personal circumstances that have slowed your progress, you should complete an Agreed Progression Plan (APP) with your College. It should detail the steps being taken to get back on track and the revised timeline through to completion of studies. This usually requires a meeting as it involves a detailed discussion about the challenges faced and what your subject options are moving forward. The APP describes in detail the rest of your course through to completion so the Department of Home Affairs (DHA) know clearly how long you need a visa.

If you’re a Higher Degree by Research (HDR) student and you’ve had academic progress issues, or experienced compassionate and compelling personal circumstances that have slowed your progress, you should work with your supervisor to complete an Application to Extend Candidature form available on the HDR Forms and resources page, noting the extension period required for thesis submission.

You can request an extension of sponsorship once your APP/Application to Extend Candidature Form has been completed and signed off by your College. You’ll need to:

  • contact your sponsor directly requesting a sponsorship extension and revised Financial Guarantee Letter that covers you through to your new course end date
  • provide the updated Financial Guarantee Letter and APP to our Sponsored Programs Team.

You’ll then need to apply for a new CoE and visa.

If you need a new visa, it's because there’s been a change to your original course - usually because of academic difficulties. As a sponsored student you will also need to provide a new financial guarantee.

For more information about applying for a CoE as a current student, visit our page on How to apply for a student visa.

You’ll also need to extend your health insurance.

Sponsored students whose OSHC cover has been arranged by La Trobe on behalf of their sponsor can extend their OSHC using the OSHC extension request form. A range of documents are required for this purpose, including a Financial Guarantee Letter that indicates the sponsor will cover OSHC costs for the extended period. Students should submit the completed OSHC extension request form with all required attachments to La Trobe International marked to the attention of the Sponsored Programs Team.

Find out more information about Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC).

From time to time, you may be able to take leave from your studies. However, this needs to be approved in writing by your sponsor and requires appropriate documentation before it can be processed. Taking a leave of absence will also mean you’ll need a new financial guarantee from your sponsor.

Please see the Leave of Absence page for more information.

If you’re a sponsored student, we’re required to monitor your academic progress and report your results to your sponsor every semester. Please be advised that your sponsorship may be dependent on successful completion of your subjects and that your sponsor may terminate financial support if they are not happy with your progress.

For Higher Degree Research students, we send your sponsor your Research Progress Panel (RPP) report annually.

We also monitor your academic load. As an international sponsored student, you need to maintain full-time course load (usually 60 credit points). Anything less than this needs to be approved by your sponsor and by the Sponsored Programs team.

If you’re having difficulty with your studies, there’s plenty of support available. Start at the La Trobe Learning support and programs page for excellent resources to assist you. For academic progress issues, you should first contact your college for information about available academic support.

Some sponsors provide additional sponsorship entitlements, such as a tutoring allowance, to assist students who need extra help with their studies. You should check with your sponsor directly to find out about any available entitlements and the process for accessing these.

You should also contact your course coordinator before engaging a private tutor to seek your College’s endorsement for this. If you’re requesting support for tutoring, this must be confirmed by your course coordinator and you must also demonstrate you’ve already accessed (or attempted to access) all available university support programs.

Some sponsors will undertake monitoring visits to meet with you directly and discuss study progress and any other relevant issues. Our Sponsored Programs team sometimes assists them with these visits, including arranging their meeting times with you.

Finishing your course early

Please notify Sponsored Programs team if:

  • you’ve applied for and been granted Advanced Standing that will bring your completion time forward
  • you’ve overloaded or undertaken additional summer or winter semester units which have brought your completion time forward.

We’re required to report your early completion to the Department of Home Affairs. See the FAQ section of this page for more information.

Completion letter and academic transcripts

Once you’ve completed your course, if you have no debt owing to the University, you’ll be mailed one free transcript to your postal address. If you require additional transcripts or an official Completion letter, you can request these via student administration on your campus. Find out more about academic transcripts.


If you’ve completed your course, you’re eligible to graduate if you’ve met all credit requirements of their course, have a course status of 'passed' and owe no money to the University. If your sponsor has not paid your tuition fees or OSHC costs (where relevant), you won’t be able to graduate. If non-payment of fees is impacting on your eligibility for graduation you should contact your sponsor directly to prompt urgent payment. Find out more details about graduation.

Australian Permanent Residency

Most sponsors don’t allow you to change your residence status while you’re on a sponsorship, so you’ll usually be required to return to your home country when you complete your studies. Please check the terms and conditions of your sponsorship carefully or contact your sponsor for further clarification

Forms and requests

Sponsored student FAQs

Your StudentOnLine account may be locked if your sponsor hasn't paid your tuition fees in a timely way or if you’ve incurred a fine (such as a library fine). Different sanctions may be applied to your student account depending on how overdue the payment is and may include:

  • limiting library access, student email access, requests for official documentation and access to graduation
  • termination of your enrolment, which could mean you become in breach of your student visa conditions.

Contact your sponsor to prompt them to pay urgently if your account is encumbered (blocked) or contact the Sponsored Programs team for further clarification.

If you finish your course a semester/term earlier than your CoE expiry date, La Trobe University is required to report your completion to the DHA through our usual reporting processes and your student visa will expire shortly afterwards.

Please refer to the Department of Home Affairs website [external link] for further details regarding visa expiry conditions or contact the DHA’s general inquiries line on 131 881 for advice.

If you wish to remain onshore to undertake a further program of study once you’ve completed your La Trobe degree, you should apply for the new course promptly on completion of your current course and apply to your sponsor for a Financial Guarantee Letter for your next program of study.

Every semester the Sponsored Programs team provides a detailed report to sponsors about your student enrolment, including all the subjects you’ve chosen for that semester. We’re unable to write individual confirmation letters about your enrolment. Instead, we confirm enrolments as a group after the commencement of each semester and after the census date.

If you need a letter for another purpose please fill in this request form. Make sure you include your full name, student ID, national ID (if applicable), your sponsor, course title and a brief explanation of what you need included in the letter.

Please allow three working days for the letter to be processed.