Student Services and Amenities fee

What is the Student Services and Amenities fee?

In October 2011, the Australian Parliament passed the Higher Education Legislation Amendment (Student Services and Amenities) Bill 2010, allowing universities to charge a Student Services and Amenities fee (SSA fee) of up to $263 from 1 January 2012 (indexed annually thereafter) as an initiative to increase student support and services in Australian universities. The University of Sydney began charging the fee on 1 January 2012.

Help paying the fee

The fee is calculated based on the student’s semester load (i.e. full-time/part-time status) and will be charged on a semester basis. There is a new component of the HELP scheme, called SA-HELP, which will allow eligible students to defer the payment of their SSA fee.

Who pays the SSA fee and when?

Who is charged the SSA fee?

Domestic and international (undergraduate and postgraduate) students are liable for the SSA fee at the University of Sydney.

How much is the fee?

Semester Attendance Pattern SSA fee Amount

February Semester 2014

Full Time

(semester study load of 0.375 or more)

$140.50

February Semester 2014

Part Time

(semester study load of 0.374 or less)

$105.37

July Semester 2014

Full Time

(semester study load of 0.375 or more)

$140.50

July Semester 2014

Part Time

(semester study load of 0.374 or less)

$105.37

There are strict guidelines that stipulate the collection and distribution of SSA fee. The proceeds from this fee can only be used for student services such as advocacy, food, childcare, legal, accommodation, sports and recreation etc. More information regarding these guidelines can be obtained from the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations.

Help with payment: SA-HELP

SA-HELP is a loan program that is similar to HECS-HELP and FEE-HELP, which allows eligible students to defer the payment of their SSA fee. In order to be eligible for SA-HELP students must meet the following criteria:

  • be either an Australian citizen or a permanent humanitarian visa holder residing in Australia; and
  • be enrolled in a course of study (or a bridging course for overseas trained professionals); and
  • submit a valid SA HELP Assistance form with a TFN(Tax File Number), or a Certificate of application for a TFN, on or before the SSA fee payable date.

Students not eligible for SA-HELP will be required to pay their SSA fee up front as per the due date on their invoice. Should a student’s eligibility criteria change making them eligible for SA-HELP prior to the SSA fee payable date, they will need to attend the Student Centre (Health Science students please attend Student Central) with proof of their citizenship.

SA HELP Assistance forms are available online, and can be completed at the time of your application.
Completed SA HELP Assistance forms can also submitted at the Student Centre or at Student Central for Health Science students.

Students opting for SA-HELP will be sent a Commonwealth Assistance Notice to their University of Sydney issued email address within 28 days of the SSA fee payable date confirming their SA-HELP debt for the semester. Any errors or issues detected on this notice must be addressed by the relevant dates.

SA-HELP booklet

2013 SA-HELP booklet

2013 SA-HELP booklet (PDF 2.6MB)

Discontinuation of Enrolment

Students who withdraw from their course of study on or before the census date (ie, from all units of study) will not be liable for the SSA fee. Therefore, if the SSA fee was paid upfront you will be eligible for a full refund; or if you opted to obtain a SA-HELP loan, you will no longer be liable.

Students who discontinue their enrolment after the census date or those who are prevented from successfully completing their enrolment due to circumstances beyond their control are able to apply for a remission of their HECS-HELP / FEE-HELP debt, or a refund of students contribution amounts or tuition fees paid up-front. However, the government has not provided any provisions for universities to remit SA-HELP debts. As such, students who discontinue their enrolment after the SSA FEE payable date, will be liable for their SSA fee and will not be refunded their SSA fee where paid upfront or remitted their SA-HELP debt if deferred.

More Information

More information about the SSA fee can be found at Student Administration - SSA Fee