All Issues Papers



  • External complaints avenues for international students
    Overseas Students Ombudsman: With the launch of Australia’s first National Strategy for International Education and increasing international student numbers, it is timely to assess whether the current system of external complaint and appeal bodies meets the needs of international students and the sector.
  • External complaint avenues for international students - Discussion paper
    Overseas Students Ombudsman: This discussion paper summarises the current external complaint avenues for international students with a view to generating discussion on whether the current system best serves the needs of international students and the international education sector
  • Problems with written agreements between overseas students and registered education providers
    Overseas Students Ombudsman: After investigating complaints we sometimes determine that a written agreement is not compliant with legal requirements and recommend that the provider pay a refund or cease pursuing a student for outstanding fees. This has a financial impact for the education provider. When a written agreement is non-compliant, unclear or poorly written, it can also be difficult for overseas students to understand their rights and responsibilities.
  • Written Agreements Checklist - January 2016
    Overseas Students Ombudsman: This checklist is designed to assist registered education providers to develop and maintain written agreements which comply with the ESOS framework.


  • Course Progress and Attendance Issues Paper - May 2015
    Overseas Students Ombudsman: To maintain the integrity of the Australian Government’s student visa program, education providers are required to report overseas students who fail to achieve satisfactory course progress and/or attendance to the Department of Education and Training and the Department of Immigration and Border Protection.
  • April 2015: Overseas Students Health Cover - Outcomes
    Overseas Students Ombudsman: In August 2014, we published an OSHC issues paper, which discussed these issues and made a number of recommendations for the Department of Education, the Department of Immigration and Border Protection and the Department of Health to consider. This paper provides an update on the outcome of those recommendations.


  • August 2014: Overseas Students Health Cover
    Overseas Students Ombudsman: The Overseas Students Ombudsman investigates complaints about the actions of private registered education providers in connection with intending, current or former overseas students. We have investigated several complaints from overseas students concerning the actions of private education providers in relation to the students’ Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC).


  • November 2009: Mistakes and unintended consequences - a safety net approach
    Commonwealth Ombudsman: Complaints have highlighted a problem in how some legislation operates. Instances arise in which government agencies acknowledge that a mistake occurred in making a decision, but the error cannot be corrected. The legislation prevents this happening, usually because it is tightly drafted and leaves no room to change the outcome. A similar problem is that legislation that is tightly drafted can have an unforeseen and harsh consequence for an individual. Once again, an agency may have no discretion to cater for unexpected and deserving cases. This issues paper questions whether there is a need for more flexibility to be built into legislation.