Working in Australia

Immigration procedures for international staff and visitors


All international prospective or appointed staff members, and invited international professional visitors to the University, are required to obtain a valid entry permit (visa), before arriving in Australia or starting work at the University.

The visa and associated work rights must be appropriate to the type of work or purpose of their stay, and the length of time they will be participating in University life.

Finding the right Australian visa

The University provides guidance to staff recruiting international candidates and inviting international visitors, on determining the best fit visa.

Most visas used by international staff and visitors at Australian universities fall into the category of “employer sponsored visas”. Many Australian employers including this University apply to the Department of Immigration and Border Protection for permission to invite overseas professionals or employ skilled workers from overseas to fill vacancies in particular occupations in Australia. Employer sponsored visas may include work rights for accompanying family members, enable dependant children to attend school and offer a range of options in terms of period of stay.

There are occasions when other visa options may be used by international staff members and visitors. Non-sponsored visas, including student visas, secondary visas, partner visas, working holiday visas and temporary business (short stay) visas, may support the activities being performed at the University.

Tables A and B in the Visa and Work Rights Policy provide a summary of all the relevant visa types. For more detailed information on each of the visa types, visit the Department of Immigration and Border Protection website.

Once a visa is granted, both the visa holder and the University as a sponsor have obligations to comply with. There are also internal forms and procedures you need to be aware of. The in the HR Service Centre administers the Visa and Work Rights Policy, and provides advice and support to University staff who are seeking to employ international staff, or organise visits by international colleagues, and to the visa applicants (see box at right for contact details).

Look through the links below for FAQs and instructions on how to apply for the most commonly used visa types.

For prospective staff members, find out more about:
For invited professional visitors (also referred to internally as affiliates), find out more about:
For short term, repeated academic engagements:

Find out how to bring academics from overseas to the University of Sydney for short term, repeated periods, enabling an ongoing working and/or collaborative relationship, either through an short term repeated academic engagement.