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Australian Skills Assessments – Do you have what it takes?

Australian Skills AssessmentsAustralia is the only country in the world that has a pre-migration skills assessment scheme with the aim being to help you find out if you have the necessary skills and qualifications to work in your nominated occupation once you arrive in Australia.

The skills assessment scheme has achieved encouraging results for skilled migrants in the Australian labour market. The Continuous Survey of Australia’s Migrants shows that more than 90 per cent of offshore skilled migrants who migrate with a satisfactory skills assessment are in skilled employment within six months of arriving in Australia.

If you want to apply for an Australian points tested skilled migration visa, you will need to submit an expression of interest (EOI) in SkillSelect and be invited to apply for a visa.

When to do a skills assessment?

Before you submit an EOI, you will have to obtain a satisfactory skills assessment from the relevant assessing authority for your nominated occupation. The Skilled Occupation List provides a complete list of the relevant assessing authority for each occupation on the list, as well as contact details for these authorities.

It’s really advisable that you don’t skip the skills assessment step and go straight to EOI. Undertaking a skills assessment before you submit your EOI may result in you spending time and money on a visa application that may not meet all the necessary requirements.

Skills assessments versus licensing or registration

A skills assessment should not be confused with licensing or registration. A skills assessment helps you to determine whether your skills and experience is relevant to Australian standards in your nominated occupation while registration or licensing means you hold a license or registration and have permission from the relevant authority to practise in Australia.

RELATED:   New Skilled Occupation List April 2010

If you wish to apply for an employer sponsored visa, you will need to provide evidence of Australian registration or licensing of your occupation to prove that you are eligible. For example, to work as a plumber in Australia, you must be registered with or obtain a licence from a local authority in the state or territory where you want to practise as a plumber. In some cases, a successful skills assessment is also required in addition to meeting the licensing and registration requirements.

Does my chosen occupation require registration or licensing?

You can check if your occupation requires registration or licensing by visiting the Australian skills recognition information page and selecting your occupation.

Remember though that the Australian Immigration department does not give advice about skills assessments or registration and licensing requirements.  They simply process visa applications according to the information and documents you provide them.

For information about skills assessments, contact the relevant assessing authority. For questions relating to licensing and registration, contact the relevant registration body in your state or territory.

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Written by Mark

As the founder of Getting Down Under, Mark is passionate about demystifying the process associated with a move to Australia. Having launched Getting Down Under in early January 2006 and made the move to Australia from the UK in the same year, Mark continues to share resources and support for those looking for assistance. If you have a question for Mark, please post in our Community Forums. Please note All information provided on Getting Down Under should be considered in conjunction with our disclaimer. Please seek professional advice if you have any doubts! 

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