Apply for HECS

Turn your dream into reality, Apply for HECS, get higher education, without being worried about the funds. Introduced by the Hawke Labor government in 1989, HECS made education affordable for students. HECS allows the government to pay funds to university education.  

Students going through financial problems can enroll in HECS, and can repay when they start earning. Once students exceed the threshold amount, students pay their debt through the tax system. 

HECS charges a set amount of money per year of study. The repay amount of each year is a percentage of their income. That percentage is based on their income and the amount of their HECS debt. HECS gives you more flexibility in your studies, as you do not have to worry about how you are going to pay for your tuition fees upfront. 

Eligibility Criteria for HECS:

Domestic students can apply for HECS, but not all of them are entitled. Check out these eligibility criteria, before you apply for HECS:

  • Only the Australian citizen or permanent residents to apply for HECS. 
  • The student holding the New Zealand special category visa or permanent humanitarian visa can apply for HECS. 
  • Students must be enrolled in CSP at a higher education provider.  
  • Students must meet the completion rate requirements for the selected course.

Step-by-step process on Applying for HECS

How To Apply For HECS

Step 1: Research and Choose an Eligible Course

Brainstorm list of potential courses you’re interested in. Consider your academic interest and career goals, while choosing a course. Ask yourself: What do you want to study? What do you want to do after you graduate?

Make sure the course you use will help you achieve your goals. There are multiple resources available to assist you in research. You can visit universities’ websites, look at catalogs and decide your course. You can also discuss with current students and alumni to get their perspective about the HECS approved course

Step 2: Get your Tax File Number (TFN)

 You will need a TFN to apply for HECS. TFN is required for HECS, and used to track debt repayments. The ATO will automatically deduct a portion of your income, when you earn a taxable income. TFN is also used to ensure that you are paying the correct amount.  You can read our detailed article on MAXIMIZING TAX BENEFITS WITH YOUR TAX FILE NUMBER (TFN) to get some more detailed insights regarding TFN.

Step 3: Get your Unique Student Identifier (USI)

A Unique Student Identifier (USI) is required to apply for HECS. USI consists of a 10-digit number which identifies you as a student in the Australian education system. It is also used to track student progress through studies. 

USI links the students’ loan information with personal details. You can get your USI from your university or higher education provider, or you can create your own online.

Step 4: Request for Commonwealth support and HECS-HELP 

You will need to complete the “Request for Commonwealth Support and HECS-HELP” form to apply for HECS-HELP. This form is available from your university or higher education provider.

The form will ask you for some personal information, such as your name, date of birth, and contact details. It will also ask you for your Tax File Number (TFN) and your Unique Student Identifier (USI). You will also need to indicate on the form whether you are applying for a Commonwealth supported place (CSP) and/or a HECS-HELP loan. 

You will need to pay a student contribution amount, if you’re applying for a CSP. If you are applying for a HECS-HELP loan, you will not need to pay any upfront fees. Make sure that you read the form clearly and have all of the required information before you apply. 

Step 5: Submit your application by the census date. 

You must submit your application for HECS-HELP by the census date for your course. The census date is the deadline for finalizing your enrolment and accepting your offer of a Commonwealth supported place (CSP).

If you do not submit your application by the census date, you will not be eligible for a HECS-HELP loan for that study period. You may still be able to enrol in your course, but you will have to pay the full fees upfront.

The census date for your course will be different depending on your university or higher education provider. You can find the census date for your course on your university’s website or by contacting your student support services.

Remember the census date, start your application early, so you’ve plenty of time, double-check the application before you submit. 


HECS (Higher Education Contribution Scheme) provides an excellent opportunity for Australian citizens, permanent residents, and eligible visa holders to pursue higher education without financial burden. The scheme enables students to commence their studies without worrying about tuition fees, paying back their debt later through the tax system once their income exceeds the threshold.

By making higher education more affordable, HECS continues to be a valuable resource in turning dreams into reality for countless students across Australia. Remember to stay informed and start the application process early to make the most of this opportunity. Visit this Calculator to Calculate your HECS.


How is HECS applied?

HECS is applied by filling the application form and must be submitted before the census date of your course. The form will ask you for some personal information, such as your name, date of birth, and contact details. 


HEC isn’t offered to all international students, except New zealand special category visa holders. Australian citizens and permanent humanitarian visa holders can join HECS. 


Generally, HECS-HELP applications are processed within 28 days of the census date. However, there may be some delays if your application is incomplete or if there are any problems with your documentation.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *