ACT Skilled Migration Program closed to overseas applicants until July 2017

Canberra residents

This action does not affect Canberra based applicants. You are still able to apply for ACT nomination if you meet the nomination criteria.

Streamlined PhD nominations

This action does not affect ACT PhD alumni living overseas. You are still able to apply for steamlined nomination if you meet the nomination criteria. Email migrationservices@act.gov.au for advice on how to lodge the online application. 

ACT Occupation List will be updated in July 2017

As of 19/04/2017 the Consolidated Sponsored Occupation List (CSOL) (which informed the ACT Occupation List) has been replaced by the Short term Skilled Occupation List (STSOL). There has been a removal of 200 occupations from the CSOL in creating the STSOL. A new ACT Occupation list based on the STSOL will be announced in July.

Permanent visa options

People celebrating Australia Day

If you are currently studying in Canberra and you would like to create your future and stay permanently in Australia, there are a number of visa options available to you.

ACT nomination for PhD graduates

The ACT is offering free, streamlined nomination for holders of a PhD awarded from an ACT university. This means that, subject to meeting Commonwealth visa requirements, you may be eligible to apply for fast tracked territory nomination of a Skilled Nominated (subclass 190) visa. You will benefit from a simplified application process with minimal supporting documentation, priority processing and the removal of the $300 service fee.Your nominated occupation does not have to be in demand in Canberra. You  may nominate any occupation on the Consolidated Sponsored Occupation List (CSOL) as long as you have the relevant skill assessment

Canberra residents 

You are eligible to apply for streamlined ACT nomination if you have completed a PhD at an ACT university. You must be living in Canberra for at least 12 months before you apply. There is no criteria relating to when your PhD was awarded by an ACT university providing that you meet the Canberra residency requirement.

Interstate / overseas residents

If you are living in another state or territory, or you are living overseas, you are eligible to apply for streamlined ACT nomination if your PhD was awarded by an ACT university no more than two years before you apply.

Once ACT nomination is confirmed on SkillSelect, the Department of Immigration and Border Protection will simultaneously issue the visa invitation to apply for a Skilled Nominated (subclass 190).

PhD Streamlined nomination guidelines 

ACT nomination for international students

If you are the holder, or the dependent of the holder of a student / graduate visa who has NOT lived in another Australian state or territory within the last two years, you must meet the following criteria before you are eligible to apply for ACT nomination:

You have lived in Canberra for the last 12 months and you are:

  • A graduate (or the dependent of a graduate) who has completed a CRICOS registered course/s (at least two consecutive academic semesters) at a Canberra institution; and
  • Working for an ACT employer in a skilled occupation (as defined by ANZSCO skill level 1 to 4). You do not have to be working in your nominated occupation. The employment does not have to be full time.

If you are eligible to apply for ACT nomination, you can lodge the application online and demonstrate that you meet the nomination criteria. You can find a copy of the ACT nomination guidelines on the 'Skilled visa' home page:

Skilled visa - ACT nomination 

Employer nomination for skilled workers

If you are working for a Canberra employer in a skilled occupation, you may be eligible to apply for permanent residence under the Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme.  You can find out more about this visa by visiting the 'Nominate a skilled employee' home page. 

Nominate a skilled employee