Understanding mid-year entry

Considering a mid-year start in Australia? Here’s what you need to know.

25 April 2023

Three international students walk through a university campus

Australia’s academic year starts in February or March and ends in November. However, there’s also the option to start your studies mid-year, in July. Depending on your circumstances, a mid-year start might even work out better for you and won’t impact your progress.

If you’re considering a mid-year start in Australia, here’s what you need to know. 

What is a mid-year start? 

Australia’s tertiary system usually runs on a semesterly basis, with the academic year split into two half-year study periods. This means you can apply to start your studies in Semester 1 (February or March) or Semester 2 (July) each year.

So, a mid-year start can allow you to start your studies in the middle of the academic year, in July. Applications for mid-year enrolment usually open around April each year, in time to begin studies in July.  

Many education providers in Australia offer mid-year intakes for different types of study. However, this may depend on your area of study, level of study and the qualification you plan to complete.

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Tip!

Some Australian education providers also offer trimester or term-based start times.

When should I apply? 

You should contact your education provider to find out whether mid-year enrolment is possible for your course, and when you should apply. Application deadlines are important. They make sure you have enough time to plan and prepare to arrive in Australia before you studies begin.

Your education provider can also give you information on whether you should apply directly to them or through an education agent. If applications need to be made through an education agent, your chosen education provider will be able to help you find one near you. 

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Check out any semester break ‘intensives’ or summer school options that might allow you shorten your total length of study. If you have completed any relevant work experience before applying, you might also be able to seek study credits as Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL).

Will I miss out on orientation events?

It’s true that many orientation events happen at the start of the academic year, but starting mid-year in July means you will still have access to fun and welcoming orientation events too.

Given that some of your peers will have already formed friendships in Semester 1, consider joining some clubs, student associations or sports teams to meet new people when you arrive.

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Even before you arrive, find out if your education provider offers a virtual open day that you can attend to get to know your new campus.

What are the benefits of a mid-year start? 

There are many reasons you might consider a mid-year enrolment, including:

  • If the academic year of your previous studies ends in June, and you don’t want to wait to get started on your next study step.
  • If the course you enrolled in for Semester 1 is not a good fit for you, you could consider changing to another course mid-year, to save you waiting until the next year.
  • If you’ve missed out on your first preference, a mid-year enrolment might give you another chance if you’re able to transfer into the course of your dreams.
  • If you would prefer to gain some work experience or you have landed an internship in your potential career area.
  • If you would just rather take a break or travel between study levels.

No matter the reason you’re interested in a mid-year enrolment, your education provider can support your application process and provide guidance along the way.

Enjoy your new study experience!