International Students and Work Rights in Australia

As an international student you and your family members have work rights on your student visa.

How many hours can I work?

According to the Australian Government’s Department of Home Affairs, international students on student visas undertaking a degree by coursework (Bachelor degree, or Masters by coursework) are entitled to work 40 hours a fortnight when University is in session, and unlimited hours when the University is on break.

A student undertaking a full research degree (Masters by research or PHD) may work unlimited hours during their studies in Australia. In both cases students can only start working after their course has commenced.

Visit the Department of Home Affairs website for more information.

Proving to your employer you have work rights

Your employer may ask you to prove your work rights. You can download this letter from La Trobe University to show them.

If you need something more personalised then you can request a To Whom It May Concern Letter. This costs $40 and can take 15 working days.

Your work rights

Everyone in Australia, including international students, have basic rights and protections at work. The Fair Work Ombudsman makes sure your rights are protected. You are entitled to minimum wages and fair conditions. Read more at the Fair Work website.

Help finding work

La Trobe University’s Career Hub is a great place to start, to get help with your CV, interview skills and finding work.

Resources for international students and working in Australia