Under 18 Care Program

A guide for Under 18 students applying to UNSW College.

Student (Natalie) walking through the L5 courtyard with backpack and tablet

Over the years, we have cared for and supported thousands of young international students like you. Our dedicated team is highly trained to help with all aspects of life in Australia – whether it’s arranging the right accommodation, supporting your studies or looking after your health. And we set some simple rules to make sure you stay safe and make the most of your studies.

Are you under 18?

If you are under 18 without a parent or a guardian in Sydney, there are additional visa requirements you need to meet. You have two options: 

  1. Join the UNSW College Under 18 Care Program and receive Confirmation of Appropriate Accommodation and Welfare (CAAW). 
  2. Live with your parent or nominated guardian in Sydney. For this, you will need approval from the Australian Department of Home Affairs. For more information, visit the DHA website search for ‘Welfare arrangements for students under 18’. 

It is important that you have certain arrangements in place for your welfare while studying and living in Australia, because it forms part of the visa requirements for under 18 International Students. Your visa won’t be approved without meeting the requirements. Students who are in Australia at the time of application must provide Guardianship Approval Confirmation from DHA.

What you will experience 

If you join the Under 18 Care Program, you’ll have access to additional specialised support from our team of Student Advisers. You are offered lots of support and must follow set of specific rules to ensure your safety and to maximise your study experience. 

This includes: 

  • An orientation session specifically designed for under 18 students. This gives you the opportunity to meet your Student Advisers, get familiar with Under 18 Student Rules and find out what support is available 
  • Regular meetings with Student Advisers to help keep your studies on track. They will also check in on your health and wellbeing, social life and accommodation, so it’s the perfect time ask any important questions 
  • Accommodation assistance to help you resolve any issues or change your living arrangements 
  • Regular workshops to help you develop skills to study more effectively and live independently 
  • Assistance with your transition to UNSW to help you plan for university, such as addressing any gaps between programs and arranging accommodation 
  • 24/7 support for emergencies, if you need our help. 

Contact our Admissions Team to apply 

Contact Admissions

For parents 

We understand that sending your child, in particular when they are under 18, to study internationally, while very exciting, can also be stressful. This is why we have a dedicated Student Support team to provide care and support for students and their families.   

Parent information sessions 

If your child is Under 18, we hold information sessions and webinars with our Student Support team and Academic Heads for parents. These sessions help you understand visa and enrolment requirements, university processes and expectations, learning processes and offer support if your child is studying online. This is the perfect time to ask lots of questions. 

Student Advisers will communicate with parents about academic progress, health and welfare. You can contact them via the email below at any time. They also work closely with various teams and services to make sure your child feels supported and safe throughout your UNSW journey.

Contact Student Support

How to apply for your CAAW 

All under 18 students are required to complete a Care and Appropriate Welfare form (CAAW) on application to UNSW College. On this form you will tell us where you are planning to live and when you plan to arrive in Australia. Here are the steps to apply: 

  1. When you receive your Letter of Offer, complete your Confirmation of Appropriate Accommodation and Welfare Arrangements (CAAW) form​. 
  2. Choose one of the UNSW College approved accommodation options such as a residential college or homestay. Pay for your accommodation and obtain confirmation of placement.​ 
  3. Submit your completed CAAW form and proof of payment for accommodation together with your acceptance. Send it to admissions@unswcollege.edu.au  
  4. After careful consideration, we will send your CAAW letter, confirming that we have approved your accommodation and will provide support and care​.  
  5. Apply for a student visa using CAAW approval letter​. 


Under 18 indicative Student Fees:

  • CAAW Administration fee: $A150

  • Under 18 Students weekly welfare monitoring fee: $A49 per week

If you need assistance with your application, contact our Admissions team. 

Contact Admissions

Teams to support you

We have teams of dedicated staff who are here to make your UNSW College experience the best it can possibly be, whatever you need help with. 

  • The Future Students Team: This team can answer your questions when you’re in the process of applying and enrolling in your UNSW College program. 
  • The Admissions and Enrolment team: Need help with your Under 18 application or your offer? Our friendly Admissions Team will support you through the process. 
  • The Student Services Team: Once you’re a UNSW College student, this team is here to answer all your general questions.
  • Student Advisers: If you have some academic or personal issues that you need some help with, you will be able to book an appointment with a student adviser for support.
  • The Academic Services Team: This team is here to help you with exams, timetables, course documentation etc.

Under 18 Student visa requirements & care arrangements

Download the Under 18 Student and visa requirements & care arrangements document for more information on:

  • Visa requirements - demonstrating adequate welfare arrangements
  • Application to enrolment process
  • UNSW College U18 Care Program
  • Additional support offered to parents

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