Commonwealth Supported Place (CSP) is a higher education place partly funded by the Australian Government and partly funded by you. The part funded by you is your student contribution, which you can pay in full or partially up-front each teaching period, or defer and repay later with a HECS-HELP loan.

2024 student contribution bands

Annual student contribution amount for one Equivalent Full-Time Student Load (EFTSL)

Funding Cluster Fields 2024 maximum student contribution amount (per EFTSL)
Funding cluster 1 Law, Accounting, Administration, Economics, Commerce, Communications, Society and Culture A$16,323
Funding cluster 2 Education, Postgraduate Clinical Psychology, English, Mathematics or Statistics A$4,445
Funding cluster 2 Allied Health, Other Health, Built Environment, Computing, Visual and Performing Arts, Professional Pathway Psychology or Professional Pathway Social Work A$8,948
Funding cluster 3 Nursing, Indigenous and Foreign Languages A$4,445
Funding cluster 3 Engineering, Surveying, Environmental Studies or Science A$8,948
Funding cluster 4 Agriculture A$4,445
Funding cluster 4 Pathology A$8,948
Funding cluster 4 Medicine, Dentistry or Veterinary Science A$12,720

If you’re not offered a CSP, you can still get government assistance to pay for a full-fees place with a FEE-HELP loan.

You should also check other loans, discounts and scholarships that you may qualify for. You can read more about HECS-HELP loans on the Australian Government's StudyAssist website or download the StudyAssist booklet [PDF 752KB].

Expanded HELP loan limits

Since 1 January 2020, there is a new combined HELP loan limit in place, which includes HECS-HELP, FEE-HELP, VET FEE-HELP and Vet Student Loans.

The amount that you can borrow under HELP has a limit set by the government. You can read about HELP loans in detail on the Australian government StudyAssist website.

How do HECS-HELP loans work? 

Through HECS-HELP, the Australian Government pays some or all of your tuition fees to Swinburne on your behalf. 
You don’t need to pay for your course up-front. You start repaying this loan to the Australian Government through the tax system once your taxable income is higher than the minimum repayment threshold.

The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) calculates your compulsory repayment for the year and includes this on your income tax notice of assessment. On top of the compulsory repayments, you can also make voluntary repayments to the ATO.

You must supply your Tax File Number (TFN) when you apply for a HECS-HELP loan. If you fail to pay your student contribution up-front (or defer it via HECS-HELP) or supply your TFN by the census date, your enrolment will be cancelled.

The outstanding balance of your HECS-HELP loan will increase each year with the Consumer Price Index (CPI). 

HECS-HELP loans do not cover your Student Services and Amenities Fee (SSAF), which is compulsory for all local online and on-campus students and charged each teaching period.

SA-HELP loans are available if you need help paying your SSAF.

In each teaching period before your unit census date, you can:

  • defer all and incur your HECS-HELP debt if you have supplied your Tax File Number
  • pay your full student contribution amount owing for that teaching period
  • pay part of your student contribution amount and the balance will accrue to your HECS-HELP debt.

You can pay by logging in to My Finances. Check your Statement of Account for the amount and choose your preferred payment method.

Are you eligible for a HECS-HELP loan?

You are eligible for a HECS-HELP loan if you have been offered a Commonwealth Supported Place (CSP) for an undergraduate degree at Swinburne or a UniLink course, and you:

  • are an Australian citizen and doing at least one unit of your course in Australia; or
  • hold a permanent humanitarian visa and will be living in Australia for the duration of your course; or
  • hold a New Zealand Special Category visa and meet the special eligibility requirements for New Zealand citizens.

HECS-HELP up-front discount has been removed

On 1 January 2023, the Australian Government removed the HECS-HELP up-front discount. This means students will no longer receive a discount when making upfront payments for classes that start after 1 January 2023.

Students who are studying units with a census date in 2022 are still eligible to receive the HECS-HELP up-front discount. Find out more on the StudyAssist website.

How to apply for a HECS-HELP loan

You can apply for a HECS-HELP loan online, after you have accepted your offer of a Commonwealth Supported Place at Swinburne. 

Note: The HECS form is a mandatory requirement for a Commonwealth Supported Place. If you are paying your student contribution in full upfront or deferring your fees, you must submit the HECS-HELP form by the census date. 

When we submit your HELP loan data to the government, your TFN is verified against Australian Taxation Office data. Your TFN must be verified before your census date for you to be eligible to receive the loan.

To ensure your TFN can be verified, check that your Swinburne personal details match what you have supplied to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO). If your details do not match, you won’t be eligible for a HECS-HELP loan and you’ll be required to pay your fees upfront.

The personal details that must match are:

  • TFN
  • date of birth
  • given name, other given name(s) and family name
  • permanent address details.

To ensure your records match after completing the HECS-HELP loan application, please check your personal details in My Swinburne and in the ATO’s record via their online service.

Check your Swinburne personal details
  • Log in to My Swinburne using your student ID and password
  • Select the My Details tile
  • Check and update your personal details
Check your ATO personal details

If your TFN cannot be verified after you submit your HELP loan details to the government, we’ll alert you via email.


  1. Log in to your student portal, My Swinburne, using your student ID and password 
  2. Select the My Study tile 
  3. Select the Government Assistance tab on the left-hand side of the window 
  4. Click Add and select the HECS-HELP form in the dropdown menu 
  5. Read the form carefully and fill out all necessary details 
  6. Click Submit

Note: all government assistance forms must be received by the census date for your course. 

If you need to change, cancel or view the status of your HECS-HELP application, simply:

  1. Select the My Finances tile on your student portal homepage

  2. Choose ‘HELP Forms’ in the left-hand navigation.

Any previously submitted HECS-HELP applications are displayed when you log in, along with the status of your application.

Assistance and further information

If you need more assistance understanding HECS-HELP loans or have a question, we’re here to help.

You can: