Getting your skills assessed is a mandatory requirement for skilled migration to Australia under the points tested, employer-sponsored, graduate migrant and temporary graduate visas. While the technicalities of Australian Immigration policy are complex, trying for a visa under these skilled migration pathways is far easier than general category migration pathways.
So, what exactly is Skills Assessment? You must secure a positive skills assessment as the very first step in any Australian emigration project. This requires that your occupation experience and related qualifications should be benchmarked against several pre-determined factors.
Occupations are grouped into two: general professional occupations or trade occupations. Before starting on your application process, you should determine whether your occupation is considered general or trade. Basically, what they are trying to determine is whether your skills and education for your nominated occupation match those that an Australian Citizen in a similar role would possess.
There are separate Skills Assessment bodies for each occupation on the list, and you must first identify which skills assessment body is the right one. Make sure that you follow their documentation rules very clearly. If you are unable to satisfy the requirements of the Skills Assessment boards, then you cannot go down this route.
As a rule, Skills Assessments can be expected to take 8-20 weeks depending on the assessment body, and you will have to pay between $400- $1800 AUD. For example, the skills assessment for an electrician could cost around $1800 AUD and Nurses or Teachers would have to pay less than $1000 AUD.
Calculation of Points
You will be required to demonstrate 65 points on the Australian Points System Matrix.
Age 18 – 24 = 25 points
Age 25 – 32 = 30 points
Age 33 – 39 = 25 points
Age 40 – 44 = 15 points
If you are 45 or over, you are no longer eligible to move to Australia under the skilled migration stream. Older applicants could secure an employer-sponsored TSS visa although this visa will always remain temporary and cannot be converted to Permanent Residency after the maximum age limit of 45.
Points for Marital Status
10 points are awarded to single applicants (without a spouse or partner)
Points for STEM Qualifications
10 points are awarded for qualifications in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths
Points System for Qualifications
PHD = 20 points
Degree = 15 points
Trade Qualification = 10 points
Points for Work Experience
3 to 5 years’ experience in the last 10 years = 5 points
5 to 8 years’ experience in the last 10 years = 10 points
8 years + experience in the last 10 years = 15 points
The emigration points for work experience are calculated as the number of years of experience after qualification. However, for skilled trades such as electricians, welders, carpenters, plumbers and mechanics, time spent during training can count towards overall work experience points.
Points for English Language
Good = 20 points
Medium = 10 points
Basic = 0 points
Points for Partner’s English Language
If your partner has at least an average English test mark then you’ll gain an extra 5 points.
These points can only be added after taking an approved English exam such as the IELTS or the Cambridge English test.
Points for 190 State Nomination
The 190 State Nomination Visa adds an extra 5 points at the time of invitation to apply.
You can get 15 points for the 491 Regional Visa.
Partner Skills Points
If your partner is skilled on either the MLTSSL or the STSOL, then if they are younger than 45 they too can complete a skills assessment for Australia. This helps if you’re coming up short for immigration points, as a Partner Skills Assessment can add a further 10 to your overall total.