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Domestic Student Contributions and Tuition Fees Policy
1. Purpose:
The purpose of this policy is to set out the University of Canberra’s requirements for setting, collecting and administering domestic student contribution amounts, tuition fees and other fees types.
2. Scope:
  1. This policy applies to all domestic students undertaking a University of Canberra program of study in Australia.
  2. A domestic student is a student who is:
    • an Australian citizen;
    • A New Zealand citizen (including a diplomat or consular representative of New Zealand);
    • or a holder of a permanent visa.
3. Principles:
  1. A student will be liable for payment of all enrolled units, as indicated on a student's record on the University's student management system, by the census date for the relevant teaching period.
  2. The oldest fee due date will receive the first allocation of any payment made by a student.
Tuition Fees for Commonwealth Supported Students
  1. The University must require every student enrolled as a Commonwealth supported student in a unit of study - if they are not an exempt student (see 3.38 – 3.41, below) - to pay a student contribution amount for that unit (NB: Research Training Scheme places are not classified as Commonwealth supported places).
  2. The University sets tuition fees for Commonwealth Supported students in accordance with the published Student Contribution Bands (reviewed and published annually by the Australian Government) which outlines the maximum amounts chargeable for units within specific disciplines.
  3. Student contribution amounts and methods for calculating liabilities will be published on the University website in the University of Canberra Fee Schedule.
  4. Commencing Commonwealth Supported students must lodge a Commonwealth assistance form by Friday week one of the relevant teaching period.
  5. Commonwealth Supported students who wish to make a full or partial payment of a student contribution amount must do so by the Census date for the relevant teaching period. 
Tuition fees for full fee paying students
  1. At postgraduate coursework and postgraduate research course level, tuition fees apply to individual courses. Thus, a student’s tuition fee liability for any given teaching period is derived from the course fee multiplied by the equivalent full-time student load (EFTSL) value of each unit.    
  2. Postgraduate coursework and postgraduate research course tuition fees are reviewed annually. The Fees Officer will determine the tuition fees for each course by 1 August of the year preceding the year in which the tuition fees are to apply. 
  3. The Vice-Chancellor will, under delegation from Council, approve the tuition fees for each course in the year proceeding the year the fees are to apply.
  4. For postgraduate coursework courses, new tuition rates will apply to commencing students in the following year. Thus, the tuition fee rate which applied to an individual student at the commencement of the student’s course, will hold for the length of time it takes for the student to complete the course. 
  5. A non-Commonwealth Supported student who intends to defer payment of tuition fees via FEE-HELP must submit a Commonwealth assistance form by the end of week one of the relevant teaching period. 
  6. Up-front tuition fee payments will be due by the end of week one of each teaching period.
  7. For postgraduate research courses, the tuition fee rate approved for any particular year will be applied at the time a student becomes a tuition fee-paying student. That is, a Research Training Scheme (RTS) student who runs out of RTS entitlement may be required to pay tuition fees and will be charged at the rate of the year they became a fee-paying student. The tuition fee rate for postgraduate research students is not fixed and may increase from year to year, as determined by the Vice-Chancellor. 
  8. Tuition fees will be published on the University website in the University of Canberra Fee Schedule. The University of Canberra Fee Schedule will show the total tuition fee for the selected course of study.
Commonwealth assistance for students studying overseas
  1. The University will administer the application and selection process for eligible students to receive an OS-HELP loan according to HESA 2003 guidelines.
  2. The University will make eligibility requirements and the application process available on the University website.
  3. Students must meet all eligibility requirements to be considered for an OS-HELP loan.
  4. Students must apply for funding by the advertised deadline dates on the University website.
Student service and amenities fees
  1. Students are required to pay a Student Services and Amenities Fee (SSAF) each teaching period. In accordance with legislation, the fee may be spent by the University on items such as sporting and recreational activities, employment and career advice, child care, financial advice and food services. Payment includes a Goods and Services Tax (GST). 
  2. Eligible students may be able to access an SA-HELP loan to defer all or part of the SSAF in line with Government eligibility requirements
  3. SSAF applies to each teaching period in which a student enrols in any given year.
  4. A student who intends to defer payment of the SSAF via SA-HELP must submit the SA-HELP form by the end of Week One of the relevant teaching period.
  5. The University Council will determine the SSAF rates for teaching periods of the following year by 1 October of the preceding year taking into account the maximum rate set by the Commonwealth government. SSAF rates will be published on the University website in the University of Canberra Fee Schedule.
  6. No refunds for SSAF will be offered after the census date of the teaching period. There is no capacity under the HESA 2003 for a provider to remit an SA-HELP debt incurred by a student.
Incidental fees and charges
  1. The University may levy additional incidental fees and administrative charges in accordance with HESA 2003. University-wide fees and charges, such as late payment fees, will be published on the University website in the University of Canberra Fee Schedule
Payment of fees
  1. Payment arrangements must be finalised by the census date of each teaching period.
  2. Students must access their Statement of Account (SoA) via the student online portal. The SoA will indicate the payment date by which payment must be made.
  3. If a student processes unit enrolment changes after paying the applicable fee, there may be a variation to the student’s fee liability. Students must rerun the SoA to ensure any additional fees owed are paid by the date indicated.
  4. Any amount owed to the student, due to an early withdrawal of a unit/s, and not requested by the student as a refund, will be credited towards the student’s next fee payment in the subsequent teaching period. Students do not need to apply for a fee credit; this will occur automatically.
Commonwealth assistance notice
  1. Students with a HECS-HELP, FEE-HELP, SA-HELP or OS-HELP liability will be provided with a statement of that liability – the Commonwealth Assistance Notice (CAN) – within one month after the Census date in any teaching period.
Difficulties with payment
  1. In exceptional circumstances, special payment arrangements may be made for students not eligible for HELP support who are experiencing difficulty with payment. Written requests for special payment arrangements together with relevant documentations outlining the student’s financial situation and relevant circumstances, will be considered by the Director, Student Administration.
  2. Extensions to payments that are greater than six months would not normally be granted.
  3. Extension of payment will be advised in writing and will not be granted automatically. Late payment fees will apply, as per the University of Canberra Fee Schedule
Non-payment of fees
  1. Failure to pay fees by the Census date of any given teaching period will result in cancellation of a student’s enrolment. A student who is subsequently reinstated will be charged a reinstatement fee, as per the University of Canberra Fee Schedule.
  2. A tuition fee-paying student whose enrolment is cancelled will retain the fee liability and will not be permitted to re-enrol in a subsequent teaching period until such time as the debt is either paid in full or agreement has been reached between the student and the Director, Student Administration about the arrangements for repayment. Late payment fees will apply, as per the University of Canberra Fee Schedule.
  3. Any student with outstanding tuition, SSAF or incidental fees for either themselves or by their sponsor will not be approved for graduation until all outstanding amounts have been paid.
Exempt Fees
  1. Students who are also permanent staff of the University (see Staff Study Assistance Policy) may be approved for a fee exemption.
  2. Students who are holders of a scholarship, one of the benefits of which is tuition fee exemption will not be required to pay fees.
  3. International students enrolled in study abroad and overseas exchange programs (eg 315AG, 315AH, 316AA) may be exempt from paying the SSAF.
  4. Higher Degree by Research students who have exhausted their Research Training Scheme entitlement  and who have been awarded UC Sponsorship by the relevant Faculty or Research Institute (see Guidelines for UC Sponsorship for Over-time Domestic Postgraduate Research Students), are exempt from paying tuition fees.
Fee refunds
  1. Students who withdraw from units before the Census date will be eligible to receive a full refund of tuition fees or student contribution amount for those units.
  2. Students who withdraw from study after census date of the relevant teaching period and request a refund of payment or remission of debt will need to provide evidence of exceptional circumstance as per HESA 2003 requirements.
  3. Refunds will normally be paid within four weeks from the date of receipt of a written request for a refund from the student, or the date of clearance of the original payment, whichever is later.
  4. Refunds will be paid only following full payment of any outstanding debts owed to the University, such as library fines, late fees or student loans.
  5. A student who is dissatisfied with a decision made under this policy may appeal against the decision using the University’s Student Grievance Resolution Policy.
4. Legislation:
This policy is governed by the University of Canberra Act 1989 and its statutes and rules, Fees Rules 2006 and Fees Statute 2010. Implementation of the fees policy will be consistent with the Higher Education Support Act 2003. In developing this policy, the University had regard to the provisions of section 40B (1)(b) of the Human Rights Act (ACT).
5. Supporting Information:
6. Definitions:
Terms Definitions
Census Date A census date is the last day you can withdraw from a unit/subject without incurring a HECS-HELP or tuition fee liability. 
Domestic student
  • An Australian citizen;
  • A New Zealand citizen (including a diplomatic or consular representative of New Zealand a member of the staff of such a representative or the spouse or dependent relative of such a representative); or
  • A holder of a permanent visa.
Commonwealth Supported Place (CSP) A place in a course of study for which the tuition fees are subsidised by the Australian Government, so that students only pay 'student contribution' amounts for their units of study.
Commonwealth supported student (CSS)            An eligible domestic student who accesses a HELP loan to pay their subject charges.
 Equivalent full-time study load (EFTSL) Values calculated for each subject based on what fraction of a standard full time load the subject represents.
Full fee paying student A student studying in a non-Commonwealth supported place.
HDR Student Higher Degree by Research Student. A student studying a Professional Doctorate (PhD) or Masters by Research course.
HELP loans
  • HECS-HELP is a loan available to eligible domestic students enrolled in Commonwealth supported places. A HECS-HELP loan will cover all or part of the student contribution amount.
  • FEE-HELP is a loan given to eligible domestic fee-paying students to help pay part or all of their tuition fees.
  • SA-HELP is a loan available to eligible domestic students to help pay the SSAF
  • OS-HELP is a load to assist eligible undergraduate and postgraduate domestic students with a range of expenses such as airfare, accommodations and other travel of study expenses.
Non-award studies Non-award studies take place through a structured program of learning but do not lead to a qualification accredited under the Australian Qualifications Framework.
Remission A process of removing an incurred HELP loan debt from the Australian Government.
Student contribution amounts The amount of tuition fees a Commonwealth supported student has to pay.
SSAF Student Services and Amenities Fee: All students will be charged the yearly set rate. Students who are part-time over the entire academic calendar will only pay this one off annual fee. Students who are full-time over the entire academic calendar will pay a set supplementary fee in Semester Two.
Statement of Account (SoA) Fees invoice