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What is the CRICOS code

CRICOS stands for the Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students and is in place to ensure international students studying in Australia get a good quality of education. All universities and colleges in Australia that accept international students must be CRICOS registered, to meet the requirements set out in the National Code of Practice which was set up to protect the interests of international students studying on Australian soil.

A similar arrangement to CRICOS exists in New Zealand where universities that accept international students must meet the New Zealand’s 2021 Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students. This system creates minimum standards the courses and institutions have to meet, especially in concern with good practice procedures and a system implemented to allow students complaints.

The responsibilities of institutions in Australia and New Zealand.

It is the responsibility of Australian institutions to ensure they are registered on CRICOS before they begin enrolling students from overseas. Universities in New Zealand are expected to adhere to the responsibilities set out for them in the Pastoral Care Code for International students.

What these codes of practise mean for international students

Studying abroad can be a daunting experience, especially if you have not moved away from home before. Australia’s National Code of Practice and New Zealand’s Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students were both established to safeguard both the quality of teaching that an international student may expect and also the safety and well being of the student during their studies.

If you are searching for a course at an Australian education provider, be sure to check that they have published their CRICOS code. This is your guarantee that the education provider is enrolled on the official register of providers that are permitted to accept international students on student Visas, and that they agree to follow the practises laid out in the National code of Practice. The education provider will also indicate which of its courses are available to international students.

If you are searching for a course at a New Zealand university, be sure that they have published information that shows that they follow the 2021 Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students, and that there are clear guidelines showing what to expect during your time at that institution as a result.

Finding a course or institution in Australia on the CRICOS register

All Australian education providers listed on have their CRICOS code displayed, so you can be sure that you can apply to their courses with confidence.

The Department of Education of the Australian government also provides an institution search that you can use to check for assurance that your education provider is on the CRICOS register, by searching for their title, Australian state or CRICOS code.

What about online courses?

If you find an Australian based higher education provider that only offers its courses online, you may be wondering where their CRICOS code is. According to the National Code of Practice, online only courses cannot be registered with CRICOS, so the absence of a code is not necessarily a sign that your level of education will suffer in this circumstance.

With this information, you can be sure that when you are searching for your ideal course in Australia or New Zealand, you know what to look for to establish that the education provider you pick follows suitable guidelines to ensure that you receive the best level of education and care.

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