Some ESOS courses are no longer required to be registered with CRICOS

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It is now allowed for registered training providers to offer certain supplementary courses to international students without having those courses listed on the Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS).

The Education Services for Overseas Students (Exempt Courses) Instrument 2021, which exempts some supplementary courses from the ESOS Act, took effect on June 29, 2021. The legislative instrument can be found at legislation.gov.au

The instrument allows non-CRICOS registered providers to deliver ESOS-exempt courses to international students, provided that the provider meets all of the domestic RTO standards and requirements for registration and delivery of the courses.

According to a press release from the Department of Education, Skills and Employment (DESE), the instrument will make it easier for international students to enrol in a variety of supplementary courses, such as hobby and recreational courses, as well as other short courses that may be required for employment while studying in Australia or working here now. These are low-cost and short in duration, and they allow international students to obtain pre-requisite industry qualifications to enrich their Australian experience while also improving their skills, increasing the likelihood of them finding work in a wider range of fields and reducing the likelihood of them being exploited at their place of employment (also known as workplace exploitation). Supplementary courses can be taken by students in addition to their major, CRICOS-registered course at the training organisation. Students will not be eligible to apply for a student visa solely on the basis of their enrolment in a course or courses that are exempted from the requirement. First aid, infection control, construction white cards, and responsible service of alcoholic beverages are among the courses that are excluded from the requirement.

Prior to the implementation of these changes to the definition, of course, the additional administrative and financial investment required to maintain CRICOS registration meant that only a small number of providers offered these courses to international students, limiting students’ access to training for employment in industries such as hospitality, health care, and construction, among others.

These reforms will allow education providers to more easily enter the market and offer a broader range of supplementary courses to international students, as well as assist Australian businesses in filling short-term skill shortages in order to deliver critically important goods and services to the international community.

MySkills.gov.au allows students to search for training providers who provide a specific course by entering a specific training course code, title, occupations or a specific delivery location.

List of exempted units of competency and qualifications


Units of competency

The following units of competency and any unit identified in the National Register referred to in section 216 of the National Vocational and Training Regulator Act 2011 as a later version of, or a superseding unit of the following units, are specified:

AHCCHM304 Transport and store chemicals
AHCCHM307 Prepare and apply chemicals to control pest, weeds and diseases
HLTAID009 Provide cardiopulmonary resuscitation
HLTAID010 Provide basic emergency life support
HLTAID011 Provide First Aid
HLTAID012 Provide First Aid in an education and care setting
HLTAID013 Provide First Aid in remote or isolated site
HLTAID014 Provide Advanced First Aid
HLTAID015 Provide advanced resuscitation and oxygen therapy
HLTAID016 Manage first aid services and resources
HLTINFCOV001 Comply with infection prevention and control policies and procedures
HLTINF001 Comply with infection prevention and control policies and procedures
BSBWHS332X Apply infection prevention and control procedures to own work activities
SITHFAB002 Provide responsible service of alcohol
HLTWHS005 Conduct manual tasks safely
SITHGAM001 Provide responsible gambling services
SITXFSA001 Use hygienic practices for food safety
SITXFSA002 Participate in safe food handling practices
CPCCWHS1001 Prepare to work safely in the construction industry
SITHFAB005 Prepare and serve espresso coffee
TLILIC0003 Licence to operate a forklift truck


VET courses

The following VET courses and any courses identified in the National Register referred to in section 216 of the National Vocational and Training Regulator Act 2011 as a later version of, or a superseding course of the following courses, are specified:

22556VIC Course in the Management of Asthma Risks and Emergencies in the Workplace
22578VIC Course in First Aid Management of Anaphylaxis

Need clarification or advice? Email info@caqa.com.au or call us on 1300 266 160

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