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USI in higher education

From 1 January 2023, all higher education students, including those who commenced prior to 2021, must have a USI to:

  • be eligible for a Commonwealth supported place (CSP) and Commonwealth financial assistance (HECS-HELP, FEE-HELP, OS-HELP, SA-HELP) 
  • to graduate and receive their award.

Offshore international students do not require a USI if they completed all their study outside of Australia. 

Offshore international higher education students do not require a USI if they completed all their study before 1 January 2023 and are not in Australia at the time of conferral. 

A USI is a student's lifelong education number

What do students need to do? 

Students who are commencing study in 2021 should: 

  • check if they already have a USI (from previous vocational education or training) 
  • get a USI as soon as possible 
  • provide their USI to their Tertiary Admissions Centre or Higher Education Provider when requested. 

Read more in our student FAQs

What do Higher Education Providers need to do? 

Higher Education Providers need to: 

  • encourage new students to apply for a USI as soon as possible 
  • request and record the USIs of commencing students on enrolment 
  • ensure any student commencing in a Commonwealth Supported Place (CSP) has provided a USI prior to census date 
  • ensure the CAF or eCAF includes the student’s USI 
  • report the USI as part of the DESE reporting cycle. 

Read more in our Higher Education Provider FAQs

Message 3:  

Think you might already have a USI? If you have completed any VET or TAFE courses, you may already have a USI. Check if you have one now

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If you need help, please call us on 1300 857 536 or from outside on Australia +61 2 6240 8740. Our contact centre is open between 8:30am-6.30pm (Australian Eastern Standard Time), Monday to Friday (excluding national and South Australian public holidays).


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Office of the Student Identifiers Registrar (OSIR)
Last Modified on Friday 2nd December 2022 [174]