What is a Professional Year Program?

A professional year program is a 12-month program offered by certain institutions, that serves to bridge the gap between a full-time academic engagement and professional employment. These programs intend to give international students, who have graduated from Australian graduate and postgraduate institutions, the practical job skills and vocational training needed to augment their career prospects and ensure a seamless transition into a professional work culture. It essentially makes sure that prospective entrants into the work-force are wholly prepared and job-ready.

Why Do a Professional Year Program?

Aside from the points mentioned above, there are also plenty of other reasons to apply for a Professional Year Program:

Requirements for a Professional Year Program

  1. The candidate should have completed at least 2 years of education in an Australian university or institute. The most common requirements are an accounting, engineering, or IT graduation degree from Australia. Both graduate and postgraduate degrees are accepted as long as they satisfy the 2-year minimum requirement.
  2. The candidate must hold a skilled graduate temporary visa (Subclass 485) that has at least 12 months of validity remaining. This visa lets you stay in Australia post-degree completion for a period of 18 months. Candidates are advised that a student visa will not be accepted for a Professional Year Program.

    (Note: Engineering graduates who completed their degrees in recognized institutions outside of Australia are also eligible to complete a Professional Year Program in engineering, without having the need to specifically get a part of their education in an Australian institution. These students must apply for a Skilled-Recognized Graduate (Temporary) Visa (Subclass 476).
  3. The candidate must be below 50 years of age.
  4. The candidate must have a valid passport.
  5. The candidate must display the minimum skills and qualifications needed as per the Skilled Occupation List.
  6. In case the candidate’s first language is not English, they must demonstrate proficiency in the language through their scores in language proficiency tests. A minimum overall band score of 6 is required in the IELTS, with the candidate not scoring less than a 6 band in any part of the test.

Which Programs Should I Apply In?

Although several institutions offer their own variations of Professional Year Programs, it is recommended that students focus most of their efforts on institutions and courses which are authorized by the government of Australia. This is also important if one is to receive the 5 points to apply for the Skilled Independent (subclass 189) visa. The following Professional Year Programs are recognized and certified by the Australian Government:
  1. For Accounting Graduates:
    • CPA Australia Skilled Migration Internship Program: Accounting (SMIPA)
    • Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand Skilled Migration Internship Program: Accounting
    • Institute of Public Accountants (IPA) Skilled Migration Internship Program: Accounting
  2. For IT Graduates:
    • The Australian Computer Society Professional Year Program
  3. For Engineering Graduates:
    • Engineers Australia Professional Year Program

Additional Information About Some Relevant Programs and Institutions

Fees and Payments

The fee for a One Year Professional Course will largely depend on the course provider you choose to apply with. These providers offer the programs mentioned above and are accredited institutions. The tuition costs of providers will vary with the nature of the course and program under which it is accredited. But most of the time this will end up around AUD $5,000-15,000.

For example:

Study in Australia

Courses and Admissions

Life/Living, Visa

Study in New-Zealand