HELP and other Information

For: 

The Australian Government provides financial assistance to students through the Higher Education Loan Program (HELP), which consists of five different loan schemes.

Remission of HELP debts for teachers in very remote areas of Australia

A qualified teacher, including an early childhood teacher, who relocates to a very remote area (using the ASGS Remote Structure) on or after the start of the 2019 school year, and remains teaching for at least four years in six, may be eligible to have their outstanding HELP debt remitted.

To be eligible, individuals must be engaged as a teacher at any of the following:

  • an early childhood education and care service that includes a preschool education program
  • a preschool
  • a school providing primary or secondary education.

This initiative also applies to indiviuals currently teaching in a very remote area of Australia who remain for a further four years. Service prior to the start of the 2019 school year will not count towards the four‑year requirement.

Teachers working in very remote schools are able to have indexation on their outstanding HELP debt waived while they remain teaching in that location. There is no length of service requirement for indexation waivers. This is available for eligible teachers from 14 February 2019. Once they are no longer teaching in a very remote area, indexation on any remaining HELP debt will recommence.

Further information can be found on the Remission of Higher Education Loan Program debts for teachers page, or by contacting veryremotehelp@education.gov.au

Increase HELP loan limit for aviation courses

The combined Higher Education Loan Program (HELP) loan limit will be increased to $150,000 for students undertaking eligible aviation courses at a VET Student Loans (VSL) approved provider, from 1 January 2020.

This 2019-20 Federal Budget measure is subject to the passage of legislation.

Higher Education Loan Program (HELP) Charging Measures

In line with the Australian Government Charging Framework, the Government introduced two HELP Charging Measures in the 2019-20 Federal Budget. The HELP Charging Measures allow for higher education providers, who utilise Commonwealth funding, to contribute to the maintenance and operation of HELP arrangements. The HELP Charging Measures ensure consistency and fairness across the higher education sector.

Legislation received passage through Parliament on 15 October 2019. The charges commence on 1 January 2020

.Higher Education Loan Program (HELP)

HELP provides assistance for students to pay their student contributions (HECS-HELP), tuition fees (FEE-HELP, overseas study expenses (OS-HELP) and student service and amenities fees (SA-HELP).

Education Providers can get information on how to apply to become approved to offer FEE‑HELP to their eligible students; and approved HELP providers can access a range of important support materials.

For students

Moving from school to tertiary education is a big step, and many students can find the transition difficult.

There are many aspects of tertiary education that are different to studying at high school and you need to make sure you understand all the financial support and services available to you, and the requirements you must fulfill before you begin. For detailed information about the types of support and services available, visit the Study Assist website.

Student payments

There are a range of means-tested payments available to support eligible students who are undertaking, or who are planning to undertake, approved study or an Australian Apprenticeship.

Government loans for students

The Australian Government provides financial assistance through five different HELP schemes to assist students with the cost of their tuition. The right loan for you will depend on your circumstances, eligibility and where you want to study.

HELP for applicants/approved providers

Providers can apply to become approved to offer FEE-HELP  to eligible students.

FEE-HELP is for eligible fee-paying students enrolled in an accredited higher education course, such as undergraduate and postgraduate degrees, to pay all or part of their tuition fees.

For detailed information about schedule and estimates, provider withdrawal processes, funding clusters and indexed rates, statistics and data reporting, ongoing financial requirements and access to the HELP IT System (HITS), providers can review either the Approved HEP information.

For new information about HELP and any changes to the program, providers can keep up to date with the HELP Noticeboard.

Our HELP Resources for providers include newsletters, the HITS user guides, legislation, guidelines and administrative documents.

Providers can also email the appropriate line area within the department by reviewing the Contact Us page.

Release of new HELP data

The department regularly reports a range of key statistics on HELP, including the Higher Education Statistics Collection on this website.

In conjunction with the Australian Taxation Office, the department has recently released further high-level statistics relating to HELP debts and repayments.

Tuition Protection for FEE-HELP or HECS-HELP from 2020

The Australian Government is committed to protecting student tuition and is expanding the successful Tuition Protection Service (TPS) for international students on 1 January 2020 to domestic students accessing a VET Student Loan (VSL), or FEE-HELP or HECS-HELP at a private education provider.

Private education and training providers are to pay levies, commensurate with their size and risk, to sector specific funds. The funds will be used to assist students affected by a provider default and who cannot complete their course because the provider fails to provide a course or a part of a course to the student.

The department will assist students affected by a provider default by:

  • working to identify if there is a course with another provider that is suitable for the student to complete their qualification, and if there is, provide assistance to enrol with the provider
  • where there is no suitable course or the student chooses to be re-credited, the department will arrange a re-credit of a student’s loan balance for units of study commenced but not completed.

The new tuition protection arrangements are established by the Education Legislation Amendment (Tuition Protection and Other Measures) Act 2019, which was passed by Parliament on 5 December 2019. The Higher Education Support (HELP Tuition Protection Levy) Bill 2019 introduces the levy model which will fund the scheme. The Bill is expected to pass through the Senate in early 2020.

Further information about tuition protection.

Resources

The following is a list of all the resources that are associated with HELP and other Information.

Results

  1. Deed of Financial Guarantee- Financial Viability

    Created: 20 November 2013  |  Last modified: 19 September 2016

    A template for providers in completing their Deed of Financial Guarantee - Financial Viability requirements

  2. eSAM Basic Registration Sign-In and User Account Management

    Created: 22 June 2018

    Access to the HELP IT System (HITS) via the Identity Access Management (i:AM) system was replaced with the employment System Access Management (eSAM) portal on 6 April 2018....

  3. Fact sheet- Enhanced Compliance Measures

    Created: 5 October 2016  |  Last modified: 13 April 2017

    From 1 January 2017, VET Student Loans commenced replacing the VET FEE‑HELP scheme for all new students. VET Student Loans will offer greater protections for students and...

  4. Fact sheet- Information for current VET FEE-HELP providers

    Created: 7 December 2016  |  Last modified: 13 April 2017

    The document Fact sheet - Information for current VET FEE-HELP providers is now out of date and is replaced by Fact sheet - VET FEE-HELP Grandfathering.

  5. Fact sheet- Information for existing VET FEE-HELP students

    Created: 5 October 2016  |  Last modified: 13 April 2017

    The document Fact sheet - Information for existing VET FEE-HELP students is now out of date and is replaced by Fact sheet - VET FEE-HELP Grandfathering.

  6. Fact sheet- Information for new providers

    Created: 5 October 2016  |  Last modified: 13 April 2017

    From 1 January 2017, VET Student Loans commenced replacing the VET FEE‑HELP scheme for all new students. The new student loans program will be affordable, sustainable and...

  7. Fact sheet- VET Student Loans- Information for Students

    Created: 5 October 2016  |  Last modified: 13 April 2017

    From 1 January 2017, VET Student Loans commenced replacing the VET FEE‑HELP  for all new students. The new student loans program gives eligible students access to quality higher...

  8. FEE-HELP and VET FEE-HELP Provider Application Guide

    Created: 26 November 2013  |  Last modified: 7 May 2015

    This application guide covers the requirements that applicants (the education providing organisations) must address to become approved loan scheme providers. For each...

  9. Fees Requirements Form

    Created: 26 November 2013  |  Last modified: 29 March 2019

    The Higher Education Support Act 2003 and relevant legislative guidelines requires approved providers to meet a number of requirements that relate to fees. The Fee Requirements...

  10. Financial Viability Instructions: Applicants and Providers of FEE-HELP

    Created: 20 November 2013  |  Last modified: 19 September 2016

    The Financial Viability Instructions (FVI) inform applicants of the financial information that is required, the form in which it must be prepared and how financial viability...

  11. HELP Newsletter 2015 April Edition

    Created: 8 April 2015

    The HELP Newsletter will assist administrative staff members with operational and policy matters. Our newsletters may cover training, legislative changes, distribution of the...

  12. HELP Newsletter 2015 December Edition

    Created: 2 July 2015  |  Last modified: 16 December 2015

    The HELP Newsletter will assist administrative staff members with operational and policy matters. Our newsletters may cover training, legislative changes, distribution of the...

  13. HELP Newsletter- December 2013 Edition

    Created: 21 February 2014

    The HELP E-News will assist administrative staff members with operational and policy matters that may impact on their work. This newsletter covers training, legislative changes...

  14. Higher Education Providers: Administrative Information for Providers (AIP)

    Created: 26 November 2013  |  Last modified: 4 March 2015

    The administrative information for providers (AIP) manuals help approved providers interpret and implement the student support policies that are enacted under the Higher...

  15. Higher Education Providers: Administrative Information for Providers Addendum New Zealand Special Category Visa holder access to HELP

    Created: 23 December 2015

    An Addendum to the Higher Education Provider AIP to assist providers with administering HELP loans for eligible New Zealand Special Category Visa Holders from 1 January 2016.

  16. HITS March 2014 newsletter

    Created: 25 March 2014

    HITS 2014 March newsletter

  17. Important changes for students accessing VET FEE-HELP

    Created: 24 December 2015  |  Last modified: 21 January 2016

    A student factsheet that can be provided to students for information on changes to VET FEE-HELP

  18. Indexed rates for 2007

    Created: 11 December 2013

  19. Indexed rates for 2008

    Created: 11 December 2013

  20. Indexed rates for 2009

    Created: 11 December 2013

  21. Indexed rates for 2010

    Created: 11 December 2013

  22. Indexed rates for 2011

    Created: 11 December 2013

  23. Indexed rates for 2012

    Created: 11 December 2013

  24. Indexed rates for 2013

    Created: 11 December 2013

  25. Indexed rates for 2014

    Created: 11 December 2013  |  Last modified: 28 May 2015

    For 2014, outlines the Commonwealth contribution amounts and maximum student contribution amounts per funding cluster.

Pages