Census date

The date on which a student's enrolment is taken to be finalised. HECS-HELP and FEE-HELP debts are incurred on census dates. Students must make their up-front payments and submit their request/s for Commonwealth assistance by the census date.


This is your unique Commonwealth Higher Education Student Support Number that can be used to access your Commonwealth assistance information via myUniAssist.

Commonwealth Assistance Notice

Also referred to as your CAN. The CAN Contains information about a student's enrolment and use of Commonwealth assistance each study period.

Commonwealth assisted student

A student who is receiving a tuition subsidy, a HELP loan or a Commonwealth Learning Scholarship .

Commonwealth contributions

Contributions that the Government makes towards the cost of a Commonwealth supported student's education through the Commonwealth Grant Scheme, resulting in a tuition subsidy.

Commonwealth Grant Scheme (CGS)

The scheme through which Commonwealth contributions are made.

Commonwealth Learning Scholarships (CLS)

Scholarships to assist students from low socio-economic backgrounds, who are Australian citizens or holders of permanent humanitarian visas, with costs associated with higher education.

Commonwealth supported place

A higher education place for which the Commonwealth contributes towards the cost of the student's education; students pay a subsidised tuition called the 'student contribution charge'.

Commonwealth supported student

A student who occupies a Commonwealth supported place.


Funds that have been paid into your student account and are not allocated to any charges.


The amount you currently owe.

Domestic student

Australian citizen, New Zealand citizen or holder of an Australian permanent visa. Domestic students may be offered a place as either a Commonwealth supported student or a fee paying student.

Domestic Fee Paying student

A domestic student who is not Commonwealth supported. Eligible Domestic Fee Paying students may be eligible for FEE-HELP.


Equivalent full-time study load. A measure of the study load, for a year, of a student undertaking a program on a full-time basis.


A loan scheme to assist eligible domestic fee paying students to pay their tuition fees. Any amount used under this scheme is recorded with the Australian taxation office as a HELP debt.

FEE-HELP balance

The amount of FEE-HELP a student can use to offset their fee paying tuition.


A loan scheme that records a Commonwealth supported student's student contribution charges against their Tax File Number as a HELP debt that can be repaid once the 'repayment threshold' income is met.

Higher Education Information Management System (HEIMS)

An electronic information system that provides students and higher education providers with a range of relevant information, such as the availability and usage of Commonwealth assistance by students and information on programme management reporting.

Higher Education Loan Programme (HELP)

A loan programme to help eligible students pay student contributions (HECS-HELP), tuition fees (FEE-HELP), Student Services & Amenities Fee (SA-HELP) and overseas study expenses (OS-HELP).

Humanitarian visa

See Permanent humanitarian visa holder

International Fee Paying student

Any student who is not a domestic student.

Loan fee

A fee that applies to all undergraduate FEE-HELP loans.

National Priority areas

Areas of study for which the Commonwealth offers additional assistance, either through offering additional places, increasing Commonwealth contributions or reducing the maximum student contribution amounts for a place.


A cash loan available to eligible students who undertake some of their program overseas.

OS-HELP maximum

The maximum loan amount (indexed each year) that a student can receive in a given six month loan period.

Permanent humanitarian visa holder

A student who holds a permanent visa of a humanitarian subclass as determined by the Australian Government Office for the Department of Home Affairs. A list of permanent humanitarian visa subclasses can be found on the Department of Home Affairs website here: Department of Home Affairs Visa Subclass Listing

Student contribution band

One of three bands of disciplinary areas into which a given unit of study will fall. Student contribution bands are used to determine the maximum student contributions for a place.

Student contribution charges

The subsidised tuition that Commonwealth supported students are charged toward the cost of their education.

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