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Genuine Student Test vs Genuine Temporary Entrant

April 11, 2024by admin

The Genuine Student Test (GST) and Genuine Temporary Entrant (GTE) are important concepts for international students applying for an Australian student visa. While both aim to assess the genuineness of studying intentions, there are some key differences between the two. This guide provides a detailed comparison of the GST vs GTE to help students better understand the visa assessment process.

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What is GTE?

The Genuine Temporary Entrant (GTE) criterion was previously applied by the Department of Home Affairs (DHA) to ensure student visa applicants genuinely intend to stay in Australia temporarily for study purposes only. Key factors considered under GTE include:

  • Immigration history and compliance
  • Relevance of chosen course
  • Personal circumstances like family ties
  • Potential migration pathways post-study

Visa officers would thoroughly analyze documentation and circumstances to confirm intentions of temporary stay as required by a student visa.

What is GST?

Introduced in 2023, the Genuine Student Test (GST) replaces GTE. It aims to determine if the intention to study in Australia is genuine and aligned with the objectives of the student visa program. It seeks to deter misuse and prevent non-genuine students. Key focuses under GST assessment are:

  • Immigration history and compliance
  • Relevance of chosen course to academic goals
  • Financial capacity to pay tuition and living costs
  • Ties to home country ensuring return upon completion

Detailed Comparison

Below we cover different aspects of GST and GTE that differentiate them. Read on.

Documentation under GTE and GST

Both systems require supporting documents demonstrating profile, preparedness and purpose. However, some key expected documents vary:

  • Under GTE, statements of purpose, evidence of funds, and academic records were primary.
  • Under GST, the above remains important. Additionally, proof of English language ability through IELTS/PTE, course admission letters, formal undertakings for funding, and family support letters are strongly recommended.

Assessment process differences

While factors evaluated remain similar, process flow has key changes:

  • GTE involved a separate assessment post-application by DHA.
  • GST forms an inherent part of the visa application wherein the assessing officer interviews the applicant and scores various parameters holistically.
  • GTE outcome was a pass or fail based on documentary assessment.
  • Under GST, the interview provides a platform for the applicant to explain circumstances, resolve conflicting information and strengthen the case in person.

Overall, both systems aim to verify the genuine study intentions of international students. However, GST envisions a more comprehensive, transparent and stricter assessment approach than the previous GTE criterion. Strong preparation covering all evaluation parameters remains crucial for visa success.

Intended course relevance

Both GTE and GST evaluation places importance on the relevance of the selected Australian course to an applicant’s profile, qualifications, prior experience and career goals. Some key aspects explored are:

  • Appropriateness of the educational level, field/discipline for professional aspirations
  • Logical progression from prior academic attainments
  • Value addition provided by the Australian qualification
  • Establishing clear links between course completion and plans
  • Justifying reasons for not pursuing alternative options in the home country

To satisfy intended course relevance, it is advisable to research comprehensively and clearly explain these dimensions cohesively in application statements and interviews. Supporting documents like career counsellor notes can also strengthen cases.

Financial Considerations

Evaluating an applicant’s financial standing to support studies forms a prominent criterion. Key differences in evaluation under GTE vs. GST are:


  • General funds requirement was stated without timelines
  • Informal undertakings and partial documents were accepted


  • Clearly defined living costs for each study duration
  • Formal undertakings bearing the sponsor’s details are needed
  • Latest bank statements with sufficient balance must be provided
  • Extra funds for dependents also require proof

Under GST, applicants are expected to thoroughly demonstrate feasible financial plans through credible documents like bank statements, awards, scholarships, and formal sponsorship agreements bearing greater scrutiny. Careful fund planning is vital.

Immigration history and compliance

Past visa application and grant details are important parameters considered during assessment. Some of the prominent factors looked into are:

  • Previous study stints in Australia on student visas
  • Overall time spent in Australia on various visas
  • Leave duration observed between programs
  • Adherence to visa conditions and limitations as applicable
  • Gaps in education and work explained clearly
  • Future migration intentions after the current course

While both systems assessed immigration history closely, under GST non-compliance could be a red flag. Applicants must disclose their full history truthfully and satisfactorily justify any past lapses or inconsistencies.

Ties to home country

Strong residential, social, financial and occupational ties to the home country work as an assurance for return upon study completion. Some of the primary indicators evaluated are:

  • Nature of accommodation (owned/rented/with parents etc)
  • Family (nuclear/joint) financial dependency
  • Career (job pending return/business ownership etc)
  • Community engagements
  • Assets and insurance in the home country

While these factors were examined under both systems, applicants under GST need to have very strong evidential ties through detailed family and sponsor letters, property/business documents etc. to ensure temporary migration intentions.

Final Thoughts

In summary, while the GTE and GST share a review of similar core parameters, the approaches differ to a great extent. The GST aims for more extensive applicant suitability screening through a rigorous holistic process compared to GTE’s documentary assessment. Thorough research and authentic preparation tailored to each assessment criterion hold the utmost importance for visa approval success under the GST system. Engaging professional help can significantly boost prospective students’ chances. If you desire to know more about the same, then you can always reach out to the experts at Cliftons Study Abroad and get complete clarity. Good luck!


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INDIAKochi Office
Cliftons Study Abroad
2nd Floor, Kudiyirickal Towers
Metro Pillar No 528, Palarivattom
Kochi, Kerala - 682025
UKLondon Office
71-75 Shelton Street,
Covent Garden,
London, United Kingdom,
OUR LOCATIONSWhere to find us
GET IN TOUCH Social Links
Like and follow us on our Social links to know us better

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