Special Student Categories

Deferral of Studies - Local Students

With the approval of the college, principal deferment may be allowed once for an unbroken period of up to one year for students studying the standard package or before the start of the repeat package. However no deferral is allowed for students studying abridged packages.

Deferral of Studies - International Students on a 571 Visa (International Education Section)

Once an overseas student has enrolled in a course, under their student visa conditions, they are not permitted to defer the commencement of their studies, or suspend their studies, except on the grounds of illness, evidenced by a doctor’s certificate, or other exceptional compassionate circumstances beyond the control of the student, for example, bereavement. If a student defers or suspends their studies on any other grounds the Education Directorate is mandated to report the student as not complying with visa conditions to the Department of Immigration and Border Protection. All applications for deferment must be made to the Manager, International Education Unit for approval.

Transferring Students

Any college receiving a student from another college or school in/or outside the ACT needs to obtain the appropriate verification and data from the previous college/school. In normal circumstances, students will only be eligible for the Australian Tertiary Admission Rank if they have been assessed with a grade and scale in at least two standard units in each of a minimum of three T major courses and one standard unit in a T minor course within their final ‘home’ college. The principal will decide what constitutes other than normal circumstances. Year 11 transferring students will be regarded as continuing students. Recognition will only be granted for study undertaken elsewhere during their year 11 and 12 studies. Otherwise these students should comply with appropriate package rules.

Transferring from Outside the ACT

Students transferring from outside the ACT may be granted recognition for work completed during years 11 and 12, and have these units included in their majors and minors. However, the course score is based on achievement in units after arrival, unless the student has a course score from another jurisdiction. If the student does not complete units in the course in the ACT, but has sufficient units to form a course, then the student is awarded an A course in the subject.

Transferring from Within the ACT

Unless there are exceptional circumstances, students transferring from other colleges in the ACT will maintain the unit data, except for scores, from their original college.

Changing Levels in a Subject

When a student changes a level of study within a subject within a college, the student must maintain the unit titles and grades of the units studied.

Students with Disabilities

Principals may approve variations to assessment procedures of courses for students identified with learning or other disabilities. Variations will be based on the degree and type of the learning disability.

Students from Linguistically Diverse Backgrounds

Students who meet this definition sit a modified form of the ACT Scaling Test if they wish to gain an ATAR. A student will be determined to be from a linguistically diverse background for the purpose of AST if:

  • the home college principal judges on the basis of documented evidence that AST will not provide an accurate assessment of the student’s scholastic aptitude because of English language difficulty and submits the student’s details to the BSSS for approval
  • the student has received fewer than four years of education conducted in the English language prior to commencing year 11 studies.
  • The student has been resident for fewer than 6 years just prior to starting their ACT senior secondary studies in a nation where standard English is the language.

International Private Students (International Education Section)

ACT government colleges are proud of the multicultural nature of their student population. Colleges advise students from overseas on the best choice of courses and levels - whether planning to study at an Australian university, enter Canberra Institute of Technology (CIT) or return home having been enriched with the experience of living and studying in Canberra. All colleges offer specialised English as a Second Language courses that will help improve English language and study skills in a supportive and friendly atmosphere. Extra help is also provided in the form of tutorials which are held at regular times each week or by appointment with several teachers experienced in dealing with students of non-English speaking backgrounds. The Assistant Manager of the International Education Unit is also available to help students adjust to the new environment and make the best decisions to achieve academic goals as well as ensure that time at college is a happy, productive one.

International students on a 571 student visa and the Education Directorate must comply with the requirements of the Education Services for Overseas Students (ESOS) Act 2000 and the National Code of Practice for Registration Authorities and Providers of Education and Training to Overseas Students (the National Code). The ESOS Act 2000 and the National Code can be accessed at Department of Education (EDU). Directorate policies applying to International students on 571 visas can be found at Education Directorate (EDU).

Overseas students are welcomed at colleges and should make application through:

International Education Unit
Education Directorate
GPO Box 158
CANBERRA ACT 2601
Australia

Student Exchange Programs

Some colleges have students who enjoy a period of time overseas participating in exchange programs. These are arranged through organisations such as Rotary, American Field Service, Youth for Understanding and Southern Cross Cultural Exchange. Suitable modifications to the student’s study program can be made to ensure that they meet all the requirements for year 12 certification. The ANU will consider special entry for students who have participated in such exchanges.

BSSS Brochures

Further information about these matters for students and parents is included in a range of BSSS publications that can be downloaded from the BSSS website.

They include the following publications:

What Certificates Could You Obtain?
Provides information and examples of the full range of certificates ACT students may receive.

What’s the AST?
Outlines the purpose and nature of the ACT Scaling Test used to scale the scores of students wishing to attend university.

What’s the ATAR?
Explains the requirements for and calculation of the Australian Tertiary Admission Rank.

Your Rights to Appeal
Explains procedures to be followed should a student wish to appeal against an assessment result.