How to apply for a skills assessment with ACS?

Australian Computer Society (ACS) is the peak IT representative in Australia. ACS has been delegated the authority to assess prospective migrants with ICT background to ensure that they meet the required standards needed for employment in Australia.

Some of the occupations that require an ACS skill assessment include:

Eligibility Criteria

There are different criteria depending on the level of your educational background, as well as your work experience.

  1. Temporary Graduate

You have to complete an Australian Bachelor Degree or higher, and the degree must be an ICT major and closely related to your nominated occupation. You are not required to have worked in the field.

  1. Post Australian Study Skills Assessment

You must hold an Australian Bachelor Degree or higher. The Australian qualification must but an ICT major and closely related to your nominated occupation. You must also complete 1 year of relevant post-study work experience or complete the ACS Professional Year program.

  1. Skills
    1. If you have a Bachelor Degree or higher and the degree is closely related to your occupation, and it is an ICT major, you must show 2 years of relevant work experience in the last 10 years or 4 years relevant work experience anytime in the past.
    2. If you have a Bachelor Degree or higher and the degree is not closely related to your occupation, and it is an ICT major, you must show 4 years of relevant work experience anytime in the past.
    3. If you have a Bachelor Degree or higher and the degree is closely related to your occupation, and it is an ICT minor, you must show 5 years of relevant work experience in the last 10 years or 6 of years relevant work experience anytime in the past.
    4. If you have a Bachelor Degree or higher and the degree is not closely related to your occupation, and it is an ICT minor, you must show 6 years relevant work experience anytime in the past.
    5. If you have a Diploma, Advanced Diploma or Associate Degree and the qualification is closely related to your occupation, and it is an ICT major, you must show 5 years of relevant work experience in the last 10 years or 6 years relevant work experience anytime in the past.
    6. If you have a Diploma, Advanced Diploma or Associate Degree and the qualification is not closely related to your occupation, and it is an ICT major, 6 years relevant work experience anytime in the past.
  2. RPL
    1. If you have a non-ICT Diploma or higher, you must have 6 years of relevant work experience plus a successful RPL application.
    2. If you do not have any tertiary qualification, you must have 8 years of relevant work experience plus a successful RPL application.

For RPL, you must demonstrate how you acquired your ICT knowledge. This involves submitting 2 project reports. The report must contain details on your career episode and must show ICT knowledge in a working situation.

ICT Major vs ICT Minor

If you have a Bachelor Degree or above, you must complete at least 33% of your studies in computing to be considered ICT Major. For Diploma, Advanced Diploma of Associated Degree, at least 50% of the classes must be in computing to be deemed an ICT Major. A Bachelor Degree or higher qualification is assessed as ICT minor when the computing content is at least 2/3 of the requirements for a major.

Work Experience

To be eligible, the employment has to meet the following criteria:

  • You must work at least 20 hours per week.
  • You must be remunerated for your work.
  • Your employment has to be post-qualification.

Thus, volunteering or research work that is entirely based on thesis will not be accepted as work experience.

The table below will summarise the criteria requirement.

What documents do you need to apply for an ACS skills assessment?

In addition to identity documents, you are required to provide documents to show your qualifications and work experience. ACS has strict criteria on the details to be included in the work reference letter (see sample here). The employment reference letter should include:

  • Start and finish date of the employment (DD/MM/YYYY)
  • Position title
  • Description of the duties
  • Breakdown of any earlier roles
  • Hours worked per week
  • The country where the employment was undertaken
  • Company letterhead and signed by an authorised person for the organisation.

You must also provide pay evidence to substantiate your claims. Payment evidence can include:

  • Official government tax records
  • Payslips with your name and your employer’s name
  • Bank statement with your name and your employer’s name
  • Employment linked insurance/superannuation
What happens if you cannot provide the relevant work reference letter?

Sometimes applicants are not able to provide work reference letter from their employer, which meets the above criteria. There is a range of reasons, but in most cases, it is because the company has ceased operation. In this case, ACS accepts statutory deceleration or an affidavit. However, you must explain why an employment reference letter cannot be provided.

Costs and Processing Times

It takes approximately 8 -10 weeks for the skills assessment to be completed. However, if ACS requires additional documents, it may take longer than the standard processing time.

Temporary Graduate $475
Post Australian Study Skills Assessment $500
Skills (general application) $500
RPL $550

Above are some of the critical information you will need to apply for a skills assessment with ACS.

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