Commonwealth Supported Places (CSPs)

Commonwealth Supported Places (CSPs)

  • Undergraduate

    Undergraduate students

    Information on undergraduate fees for bachelor degrees, and pathways, cross-institutional and Open Universities Australia students.

  • Postgraduate

    Postgraduate students

    Information on postgraduate fees for commencing, continuing, and Open Universities Australia students.

Fees for Commonwealth Supported Places

What is a Commonwealth Supported place (CSP)?

  1. Local students commencing Bachelor courses will be classified as Commonwealth Supported students (CSP).
  2. There are also a limited number of postgraduate courses which are Commonwealth supported.

As a Commonwealth supported student the Australian government will pay part of your fees directly to our University and the remaining amount is paid by you. This amount is called your student contribution. Your invoice will show the student contribution amount, payable by you.

You are eligible to be Commonwealth supported for a unit of study if you:

  • have received an offer of a Commonwealth Supported place for your course of study; and
  • enrol in the unit on or before the census date and remain enrolled at the end of the census date; and
  • the unit of study contributes to the requirements of a course of study in which the person is enrolled with the provider or another provider; and
  • submit a completed Request for Commonwealth Support and HECS-HELP form (CAF Form); and
  • have met the residency and citizenship requirements.

Can a student be Commonwealth supported for units they undertake which are additional to the award course requirements?
If a student can complete their award course of study, having satisfied all course requirements, without having to undertake the additional units, then the additional units are not eligible for HELP. This is because the additional units do not contribute towards the course of study.  Students may undertake additional units on a non-award basis and would need to make other arrangements to pay tuition costs.

Combined HELP Limit from 2020

From 1 January 2020 there will be a combined HELP limit for students using HECS-HELP and FEE-HELP.

In 2020 this will be:

  • $152,700 for medicine, dentistry and veterinary science students (as defined in the Higher Education Support Act 2003) and
  • $106,319 for all other students.

Only new HECS-HELP loans incurred from 1 January 2020 will be counted towards the limit. Any existing FEE-HELP Student Loans taken out prior to 2020 will count towards your new HELP balance.

Renewable HELP balance

From 1 January 2020, you can top up your HELP loan balance by making repayments on your debt. Only payments made after you lodge your tax return will count towards topping up your HELP Balance.

Repayments starting from the 2019-20 income year will top up a person's HELP balance.

Any compulsory or voluntary repayments can be re-borrowed in the future, up to the current HELP loan limit.

Once having exceeded these limits you must pay your fees upfront to the University by the relevant payment due date for each session of study.

It is your responsibility to monitor your HELP debt. You must advise the University before the relevant session census date if you believe you will exceed your limit. You can do this by sending an email to with the subject line: "Attention eCAF Team".

Students who reach their limit will be required to pay any overdue amount directly upfront to the University.

How to check your HELP balance

You can find your total usage through the ATO website on your MyGov account or via the Government’s MyHELPbalance website. Please note it will not show your current session usage so please check your Commonwealth Assistance Notices (CANs) for your latest usage.

You will need your CHESSN to access MyUniAssist. You can find this on your CANs or please email: with the subject line: "Attention eCAF Team".

What happens if you exceed your limit?

If you do exceed your limit, you will be required to pay the excess fees up front to the University. This may also mean that your account will be sanctioned and there will be restrictions placed on your enrolment and grades.

Residency requirements for CSP

  • An Australian Citizen, for students who commenced their course of study prior to 1 January 2013; or
  • An Australian citizen who will undertake in Australia at least one unit of study contributing to their course of study, for students who commenced their course of study on or after 1 January 2013
  • Permanent Resident AND be a resident in Australia for the duration of your subject.
  • New Zealand citizen AND be a resident in Australia for the duration of your subject.

If you are not residing in Australia (as indicated above) you are not eligible for a Commonwealth Supported place. This includes if you are studying at an overseas campus affiliated with Macquarie University. You will be assessed as a Domestic Fee Paying student.

Eligibility for New Zealand Citizens

Who is eligible?

You may be eligible to access HELP if you meet the criteria below by the relevant census date:

  1. Are a New Zealand citizen who holds a Special Category Visa (SCV).
  2. Began residing in Australia at least 10 years ago as a child under 18 years of age, and, at that time, you did not have a spouse or de facto partner; and\
  3. You have been in Australia for at least:
  • a total of eight out of the past 10 years; and
  • a total of 18 months out of the last 2 years

Please note: if you are, or become, an Australian permanent resident you will not be eligible for this HELP assistance by the Government.

How do I know if I am a New Zealand Special Category Visa (SCV) holder?

If you are unsure if you are a New Zealand Special Category Visa holder, you will be able to check this on the Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO) system, from the Department of Home Affairs.

You can also lodge a Request for your International Movement Records with the Department of Home Affairs, to check if you meet the above residency requirements (as advised in points 2 and 3). Remember requests can take between 14-28 days to be issued.

Please note: You must provide all the required documents and be assessed as eligible by the relevant census date, to be able to defer your fees for the particular session concerned. Otherwise, you will be required to make full payment of fees to the University for that session.

What do I need to do?

If you believe you meet all the SCV criteria, and you would like to request HELP assistance, you will need to do all of the following:

  1. Provide proof of your SCV status by sending a copy of your passport photo page by email to: with the subject line: "Attention eCAF Team". Please include your Student ID Number.
  2. Provide proof that you meet the long-term residency in Australia requirements (as advised in points 2 and 3 above). Examples of proof include:
    • Your International Movement Records
    • Australian academic transcripts (including VET transcripts) dated when you were a minor
    • School reports or certificates
    • Enrolment papers from when you were a minor
    • Australian proof of age card from when you were a minor
    • Australian student ID card or concession card
    • Stamped passport
    • Payslips or payment summaries from when you were a minor
    • Certificate of application for a Tax File Number, Tax File Number advice or notification of assessment of income tax dated from when you were a minor.
  3. Complete the relevant HELP form on eStudent (if you have not done so already).
    • You will then be advised whether or not you meet the requirements for HELP Assistance, once the University has assessed your documents.

Where can I get further information and assistance?

You can find out more or get some help by visiting Student Connect at 18 Wally's Walk, Level 2  MUSE,  ask a question online or call  us on 02 9850 6410.

You can also find further information on this on the government’s StudyAssist website.

Financial support available

HECS-HELP: available to assist with the cost of units of study.

SA-HELP : available to assist with the cost of the Student Services and Amenities Fee (SSAF)

You will need to provide your Tax File Number (TFN).

You are eligible for a HECS-HELP loan with the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) if you are enrolled in a unit of study as a Commonwealth supported student; and meet the citizenship or residency requirements. That is, you must be

  1. an Australian citizen AND studying at least one subject contributing to your course within Australia
  2. the holder of a permanent humanitarian visa who will be resident in Australia for the duration of the unit
  3. an eligible Special Category Visa (SCV) New Zealand citizen

HECS-HELP entitles a student to:

  • Defer any amount of unpaid fees as at the census date to the Australian Taxation Office for collection under the taxation system. This is dependent on the student having supplied a Tax File Number to the University by the relevant census date.

HECS-HELP is for unit(s) of study only and cannot be used to defer other costs.

Permanent Residents and New Zealand citizens (non eligible SCV holders) are not eligible for HELP loans and are required to make full upfront payments to the University by the Payment Due Dates.

Students who are liable for the Student Amenities and Services Fee (SSAF) can apply to defer their fees however they require a SA-HELP form which is different to the HECS-HELP form.

Deferring your fees

Log in to eStudent, click on following tabs:

My Offer  >  Submit Commonwealth Assistance  >  HECS-HELP eCAF  >  followed by a new SA-HELP (optional).

Students who commenced in 2009 or earlier (Pre-2010) in Education subjects

With the passage of legislation, the National Priority Rate of student contribution (tuition fees) was removed from 1 January 2018.

If you are a CSP student who commenced your course before 1 January 2010, from 1 January 2018, you will now be liable for the current year’s student contribution amounts (between Bands 1 – 3).

You may need to look at the full list of student contribution bands for each unit from 2018.

Paying fees

Step 1 - Know the due date

If you are required to pay the student contribution amount/tuition fees to the University or you are a HECS-HELP student wishing to pay some or all of your contribution to the University then:

  1. Any payment made to the University after the Payment Due Date will attract a $200 late payment fee imposed by the University. Please note: this date is different to the Academic Census Date.
  2. Failure to make payment to the University by the census date may result in cancellation of enrolment in unpaid units - this will not occur if HECS-HELP students have supplied their Tax File Number to the University by the relevant Census Date.

For students enrolled in session based units the "Payment Due Date" is the Friday before the session begins. The "Payment Due Date" is about 4 weeks before the census date for these sessions.  See Payment due dates for a list of Due Dates and Census Dates for non-standard session based courses.

Your specific Due Date will be listed on your Statement of Outstanding Charges which you can print out once you enrol into units.

Step 2 - Pay my fees

Each session, once you’ve enrolled into unit(s), you can check your fees in eStudent, selecting the “My Finances” menu. Please note: Invoices are not sent to students, all payment details are found in your eStudent.

Please refer to the following information for the relevant due dates.

As well as being able to view your statement of fees in eStudent, you can also email your Statement of Outstanding Charges to your official student email address by:

  • Log in to eStudent
  • Select > “My Finances” tab
  • Select > “Email my Statement of Outstanding Charges”.

Please arrange for full payment of your tuition fees and student services and amenities fee (if applicable) by the relevant payment due date.

A $200 late payment fee will be incurred on all payments made after your payment due date. This includes Commonwealth Supported Students making voluntary payments (if eligible to defer fees).

Payment options
  1. Pay your fees upfront directly to the University by the due date using one of the methods detailed below.
  2. If you are an eligible student, defer your fees to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) through the Higher Education Loan Programme scheme (HELP). Eligible students are:
  • Australian Citizens, or
  • Permanent Humanitarian visa holders, or
  • New Zealand citizens who have been assessed as meeting the above eligibility criteria.
  • To be eligible to defer your fees you must complete the following by the relevant Census Date:
    • Lodge a HECS-HELP application form (with tax file number) to defer your tuition fees only if you are in a Commonwealth Supported place AND
    • If you have an outstanding Student Services and Amenities Fee (SSAF) you may also like to defer this to the ATO by completing a separate SA-HELP application.

The SSAF you are required to pay may vary depending on your student status and study load. The SSAF is adjusted daily in your account. You will be liable for any changes that you make to your student status and study load at the census date.

Please Note: the SSAF does not trigger into your account until one day after you action an enrolment in units. Don’t forget to check your > My Finances account at this time to check how much SSAF you may owe.

All eligible students who wish to defer fees can complete the relevant online Commonwealth Assistance Forms (eCAFs) on eStudent.

For help on "How do I complete an eCAF" or to check your New Zealand eligibility, please refer to our How to complete an eCAF guide.

Note: If you have already submitted the relevant approved HELP eCAFs, this will cover your program of study as long as the program has not changed. The fee charges will be transferred from your student account approximately two weeks after each census date.

How to pay

You can pay your fees directly to the University using one of the methods below. Please note that if you have recently made a payment, your account will be updated within 3 business days.

Use Visa, MasterCard via the University's new online payment facility in eStudent  >  My Finances. Computer facilities are available on campus.

Biller Code: 50443
Reference number: Your 17-digit reference number is printed on your Statement Of Outstanding Charges. Contact your participating bank to make a payment directly from your cheque, savings account or credit card (Visa, MasterCard or American Express).


UnionPay card is accepted at the Cashier's Office, 18 Wally's Walk, Level 2  and Western Union.

Use Visa, MasterCard or American Express by telephone on 1300 301 043 (for the cost of a local call within Australia). This service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Please have ready your 17-digit Reference Number (printed on your Statement Of Outstanding Charges), your credit card number and a pen ready to record your receipt and date paid.

Paying Course Fees from Outside of Australia (Western Union)


Make cheques or money orders payable to Macquarie University and mail to:

Revenue Services 
18 Wally's Walk, Level 2
Macquarie University   NSW 2109

Please write your student ID on the reverse of your cheque/money order and allow sufficient time for mail delivery. The University accepts no responsibility for delays in the mail.

You may pay your student account at:

Cashiers Office: 18 Wally's Walk, Level 2, Macquarie University,

Monday to Friday Normal Hours:  9.00 am to 4.00 pm

Peak Time: 9.00 am to 5.00 pm

You may pay using EFTPOS, MasterCard, Visa, American Express, cheques, money order.

Further information on HECS-HELP places

For more information regarding HECS-HELP and Commonwealth Supported Places please refer to the Study Assist Webpage published by the Department of Education.

Additional financial support

The Department of Human Services (formerly known as Centrelink) offers many financial support options to students such as Youth Allowance, Austudy and ABSTUDY. More information can be found on their website.

Income support for Masters degrees

In 2008, Youth Allowance and Austudy assistance was extended to eligible students undertaking masters by coursework study in approved courses.

The Macquarie University courses approved for full-time domestic students are:

  • Doctor of Medicine
  • Doctor of Physiotherapy
  • Juris Doctor
  • Master of Professional Accounting (pending approval for 2020)
  • Master of Professional Accounting and Leadership (pending approval for 2020)
  • Master of Actuarial Practice
  • Master of Biotechnology
  • Master of Biotechnology and Business
  • Master of Chiropractic
  • Master of Clinical Audiology
  • Master of Clinical Neuropsychology
  • Master of Clinical Psychology
  • Master of Organisational Psychology
  • Master of Planning
  • Master of Professional Psychology
  • Master of Public Health
  • Master of Radiopharmaceutical Science
  • Master of Speech and Language Pathology
  • Master of Teaching (Birth to Five Years)
  • Courses no longer eligible for this benefit are:

  • Master of Accounting
  • Master of Environmental Planning
  • Master of Geoscience
  • Master of Information Technology
  • Master of Special Education
  • Master of Surgery
  • Courses which are pending approval from 2021 are:

  • Master of Engineering in Electronics Engineering
  • Master of Engineering in Networking and Telecommunications Engineering
  • Master of Engineering in Environmental and Safety Engineering
  • Master of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering

The Department of Education conducts an annual application round to review/approve courses under this program usually in June/July. To be eligible, the Masters by coursework courses must be:

  • required for entry to a profession; or
  • the fastest pathway to professional entry; or
  • the only pathway provided by the higher education institution following a restructure of existing course delivery.

For information about their eligibility, Masters by coursework students should contact Department of Human Services (Centrelink) or look at this webpage.

Macquarie does not have any postgraduate Diploma or Certificate level courses approved for benefits.

If you would like to discuss this further please send an email to and include "PG courses for Centrelink- Governance Team" in the subject line.

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