HELP loans and VET Student Loans

Find out about HELP loans and VET Student Loans, including eligibility and how to apply.

What is a student loan?

A HELP loan or VET Student Loan (VSL) is a government loan that allows you to defer part or all of the cost of your studies. If you have an approved HELP loan or VSL, your fees will automatically defer to your loan shortly after each census date. You pay back your loan (debt) through the tax system once you earn above the compulsory repayment threshold or you can make voluntary repayments to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) at any time.


Your eligibility for a HELP loan or VET Student Loan depends on criteria such as your citizenship status, your residency during study,  and whether you're in an undergraduate, postgraduate or vocational education program. 

Find out what you may be eligible for on the Australian Government's Study Assist website.

If you’re an Australian Permanent Resident, Permanent Humanitarian Visa holder (or eligible former Permanent Humanitarian Visa holder) or New Zealand citizen (or eligible former New Zealand Special Category Visa holder), find out about your eligibility on the Non-Australian citizens page.

New Zealand students on a Special Category Visa (or former SCV holders)

If you're a New Zealand citizen on a Special Category Visa (SCV), or a Permanent Resident (who was formally an eligible NZ SCV holder) studying in Australia, you may be eligible for a HELP loan or VET Student Loan if you meet the long-term residency requirements. For details on these requirements, please visit the Non-Australian citizens page.

To assess your eligibility, RMIT requires a copy of your International Movement Record. You can request a copy of this document by visiting the Department of Home Affairs website. We recommend applying for this document immediately after enrolment to allow the department time to process the request, and RMIT to assess your eligibility before your first census date.

RMIT may also accept other documents which prove you meet the long-term residency requirements. This includes, but isn't limited to, the following:

  • Australian academic transcripts (including VET transcripts). 
  • School reports or certificates. 
  • Australian student ID card. 

Students who choose to supply documents from the above list must supply one document per calendar year, with 8 documents supplied in total from the previous 10-year period.

Please submit your documents via Student Connect at least 5 business days before your first census date for assessment of your eligibility and resubmission of your updated eCAF if deemed eligible. 

50% pass rate requirement removed

The Australian Government will remove the Job Ready Graduates Low Completion Rate legislation from universities on 1 January 2024. RMIT adopted this change ahead of Semester 2 2023 results release on Monday 27 November so that affected students would no longer need to maintain a more than 50% pass rate to keep their Commonwealth supported place (CSP) or defer fees via HECS-HELP or FEE-HELP loans. See our FAQs for more information.

Apply for a loan

Select which type of loan you'd like to apply for below.

View your HELP loan or VET Student Loan status

If you have a HELP loan or VET Student Loan, you'll find the below information in Enrolment Online under the Financial details menu.



View Commonwealth Assistance (eCAF)

View the status of your loans for your program or request an invitation to apply for a loan.

View Commonwealth Assistance approval letters

View the letter from RMIT confirming the approval of your loan.

View Commonwealth Assistance Notices (CANs)

View the CANs for your program. The CAN shows the HELP debt for each of your enrolled courses, as well as your total HELP debt for your program.  

Your Commonwealth Assistance Notice (CAN)

Your Commonwealth Assistance Notice (CAN) outlines the loan debt you've incurred and any upfront payments you've made towards your fees.

RMIT will issue you with a Commonwealth Assistance Notice (CAN) within 28 days of each class census date. A notification email will be sent to your RMIT student email account and your nominated personal email when your CAN is available.

If there are any discrepancies between your loan debt and the amount you were expecting to pay, you have 14 days from the CAN issue date to submit a written request for a correction.

To view or print your Commonwealth Assistance Notice

Loan limit

There's a combined limit to how much you can borrow under HECS-HELP, FEE-HELP and VET Student Loans. This is called your HELP loan limit.

If you’ve reached your combined HELP loan limit, you’ll need to pay your student contribution (tuition fees) before the census date. If you don’t pay your remaining fees, your enrolment will be cancelled after the census date for failing to meet the requirements of your CSP.

How to check your combined HELP loan limit

Go to the myHELP balance portal to find out your current HELP limit and how much of your HELP balance you have left to borrow. For more information about the combined HELP limit, go to Study Assist.

For more information about your specific loan, see the HECS-HELP, FEE-HELP, SA-HELP or VET Student Loans webpage. 

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torres strait flag

Acknowledgement of Country

RMIT University acknowledges the people of the Woi wurrung and Boon wurrung language groups of the eastern Kulin Nation on whose unceded lands we conduct the business of the University. RMIT University respectfully acknowledges their Ancestors and Elders, past and present. RMIT also acknowledges the Traditional Custodians and their Ancestors of the lands and waters across Australia where we conduct our business - Artwork 'Luwaytini' by Mark Cleaver, Palawa.