Applying to become a higher education provider

The Australian Government’s COVID-19 pandemic higher education relief package included TEQSA application fee waivers. As a result, during late 2021 and into 2022, TEQSA received an unprecedented number of applications for registration and applications for course accreditation and renewals. This is likely to lead to extended application processing times into 2023.

TEQSA has noted an increase in the number of applications that include evidence that is incomplete or contains errors. TEQSA will inform a provider if an application submitted to TEQSA is not valid (in terms of not meeting the requirements set out in the relevant legislation) and inform the provider if a new application needs to be made. The timelines for application processing do not commence, and fees will not be incurred by the provider, until a valid application is made.

To apply for registration as an Australian higher education provider, applicants must be:

  • a constitutional corporation 
  • a corporation established by (or under) a law of the Commonwealth or Territory
  • a person who conducts activities in a Territory.

Under the Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency Act 2011, all applications for registration must be accompanied by an application for accreditation of at least one course of study.

Applications must be on the approved online application form (available from the Provider portal), include all information requested, and be accompanied by the applicable fee and payment/invoice form. See more information on our fees page.

If the application for renewal registration is successful, we will determine the time period of registration. Under the TEQSA Act, this period can’t exceed seven years.

After reviewing the relevant guidance materials, and at least six months before submitting an application, prospective providers should contact to advise us of an intention to apply for registration.

Before applying to become a higher education provider

There are minimum requirements that all applicants must meet prior to applying for registration as a higher education provider.

For more information on these requirements, visit our Before applying to become a higher education provider page.

Application guides and the Higher Education Standards Framework

TEQSA evaluates applications to register higher education providers against the Higher Education Standards Framework (Threshold Standards) 2021 (HES Framework).

Visit our Contextual overview of the HES Framework 2021 page for information regarding its context and an introduction to the Standards. More detailed overviews of each of the HES Framework’s Domains can be accessed from our Higher Education Standards Framework 2021 page.

We have produced a number of application guides to assist prospective higher education providers which can be accessed from our Application guides and support page.

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