What is the Professional Year in Australia?

What is the Professional Year in Australia?

Are you an international student graduating from a university in Australia with a specialization in accounting, information technology, or engineering?

If so, you may have come across the term “Professional Year Program.” This structured professional development initiative integrates formal learning with hands-on workplace experience, tailored specifically for graduates in these fields.

Navigating the post-graduation landscape can be daunting, especially for those eyeing a permanent visa in Australia. The Professional Year Program offers a clear pathway toward professional growth and migration opportunities, serving as a pivotal tool for graduates aiming to accrue points for visa applications.

Why should you consider undertaking a Professional Year Program?

Below, we have listed several compelling reasons:

  1. Gain Valuable Work Experience: Participating in a Professional Year Program provides you with the opportunity to acquire hands-on work experience in an Australian company through an internship. This practical exposure is invaluable for enhancing your professional skills and boosting your employability.
  2. Enhance Cultural Understanding: Immersing yourself in an Australian workplace environment allows you to gain a deeper understanding of the local culture and professional practices. This cultural insight not only enriches your personal experience but also equips you with the adaptability needed to thrive in diverse work settings.
  3. Develop Professional Communication Skills: The Professional Year Program offers a platform to refine your communication skills within the Australian workplace context. Effective communication is key to building successful professional relationships and navigating complex business scenarios with confidence.
  4. Increase Visa Eligibility: Completing a Professional Year Program makes you eligible to claim five additional points on the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) ‘points test’ when applying for a Skilled Independent (subclass 189) visa.

These extra points can significantly enhance your chances of securing permanent residency in Australia, furthering your career prospects in the country.

Professional Year (PY) Enhances Career Prospects

The Professional Year (PY) program aims to furnish students with a thorough comprehension of the Australian professional landscape. Combining theoretical instruction with practical internships, the program affords participants the chance to acquire firsthand experience in their preferred field. Moreover, it emphasizes the cultivation of vital professional skills like networking, communication, and collaboration.

How to Maximise Your Opportunities With PY?

  • Validity:

The Professional Year program’s validity has been extended to four years from the completion date. The Department has implemented a more flexible approach to Professional Year eligibility. Applicants can now initiate the program up to 48 months before receiving an invitation, with completion defined as the date indicated on the official Record of Completion issued by the accredited body or program partner.

  • Duration:

Professional Year Programs span 12 months, comprising seven months of classes (offered once a week, with weekend options available) and a three-month guaranteed internship placement.

  • Internship:

Industry experts endorse the internship component as an excellent entry point into the Australian job market. Many talented graduates find employment opportunities upon successful completion of their internships.

The benefits of completing Professional Year:

  1. Gain 5 additional points for Australian PR application upon program completion.
  2. Develop professional skills and accrue valuable work experience within an Australian company through the internship.
  3. Enhance understanding of Australian workplace dynamics and cultural nuances.
  4. Cultivate professional communication skills tailored to the Australian workplace.
  5. Facilitate networking opportunities with peers and industry professionals.


Who Qualifies for a Professional Year Program?

To be eligible for a Professional Year Program, you should have successfully attained a degree in accounting, computer science, engineering, or a related field in Australia. Additionally, you must possess a Skilled — Graduate (Temporary) Visa (Subclass 485), enabling you to stay in Australia for 18 months post-completion of your degree.

This visa requires you to be under 50 years old, have completed a relevant qualification within the last six months, following at least two years of study in Australia, and possess the necessary skills and qualifications for an occupation listed on the Skilled Occupation List.

For engineering graduates who obtained their degree from a recognized institution outside Australia, eligibility for a Professional Year Program in engineering is still possible. In this case, they need to apply for a Skilled — Recognised Graduate (Temporary) Visa (Subclass 476).

What To Consider When Choosing The PYP?

When considering the Professional Year Program (PYP), it’s essential to make informed choices, especially given the abundance of institutions offering it. Accounting graduates, in particular, have a wide array of options due to their significant numbers annually.

However, it’s a common sentiment among graduates that they feel compelled to enroll in the PYP primarily for the five migration points it offers. While this is a valid motivation, astute graduates recognize the potential benefits of the program beyond mere points.

A critical factor to weigh when selecting a provider is the quality of their internship placements. Stories abound of graduates being placed in menial positions, like working as accountants in obscure establishments such as fast food or takeaways. Such placements fall short of the program’s intended purpose. A quality internship can significantly enhance employment prospects.


Before you decide on any program, it’s a good idea to visit the campus and talk directly with the program manager. That way, you can get a feel for what the program is like. Also, chatting with current students can give you real insights into the course and internships. Since these programs can cost a lot, it’s super important to make sure you’re getting your money’s worth.

And hey, be careful about who you go through to enroll. Some migration agents might offer tempting deals or free help with visa stuff, but they could be more interested in getting your future business than actually helping you out. So, it’s really important to avoid getting pressured into working with dodgy agents.

If you’re looking for a trustworthy educational consultant who can help with professional year programs, GMQ Global is a great choice. We can guide you through the process and make sure you’re set up for success.


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the completion of a professional year in Australia?

Professional Year, often referred to as the Job Preparedness program, is a structured career development initiative aimed at boosting a student’s capacity to secure employment in their chosen field by applying technical skills and knowledge within the Australian workplace environment and cultural context.

How do you get professional year points in Australia?

To qualify for extra points, your professional year must have been finished within four years in Australia before receiving an invitation to apply for a visa, and it should be in your designated occupation or a closely related field.

How much does py cost?

Our Professional Year costs begin at the following rates: Information Technology – starting from $6,999, Accounting – starting from $3,800, and Engineering – starting from $14,700.


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