Go to top of page

Before you submit a complaint

Before you can submit a complaint to ASQA about a training provider, you will need to:

  • submit a formal complaint to your training provider, and
  • confirm that ASQA can consider all or part of your complaint.

Submit a formal complaint to your training provider

If you have a problem with your training provider, you must seek to resolve this problem by following your provider's formal internal complaints and appeals process.

  • Your training provider is required—under the National Code 2017—to have a complaints handling and appeals process in place. This process should ensure that your complaint is addressed effectively and efficiently.
  • ASQA will only consider your complaint if you include evidence that you have already exhausted your provider's complaints and appeals process. (In exceptional circumstances, ASQA may be able to consider your complaint without this evidence. Contact us on 1300 701 801 for more information.)

Find out which agency can consider your complaint

Which complaints can ASQA address?

If you are an overseas student studying in Australia on an overseas student visa, ASQA can investigate complaints about:

  • the quality of the training that you receive
  • registered training organisations that you believe have breached the required standards
  • training providers delivering English Language Intensive Courses for Overseas Students (ELICOS) that you believe have breached the required standards
  • the marketing/advertising practices of organisations claiming to be registered training organisations, or to offer nationally recognised training.

Which complaints can ASQA not address?

ASQA's legislation allows us to investigate certain types of complaints about registered training organisations and providers offering ELICOS where those providers breach the required standards.

However, you may have a valid or serious complaints about a training provider which does not involve the provider breaching the relevant standards. In this case, ASQA may consider the information you have reported, and refer all or part of your complaint to another agency. ASQA may also recommend that you directly contact another agency or seek legal advice.

If your complaint does not fall within ASQA's jurisdiction, it may be resolved more quickly if you directly contact the relevant agency from the list below.

Examples of complaints that may be addressed by other agencies include:

Type of complaint Relevant agency More information

If you wish to report a problem with:

  • being refused admission to a course
  • fees and refunds
  • course or provider transfers
  • course progress or attendance
  • cancellation of enrolment
  • accommodation or work arranged by your provider
  • incorrect advice given by an education agent
You will be advised to contact the Overseas Students Ombudsman if your complaint is about a private training provider or the State or Territory Ombudsman if your complaint is about a public training provider.  
If you wish to report fraud against the visa system in relation to a student: Your complaint will be referred to the Department of Immigration and Border Protection.  
If you are seeking a refund from your training provider:

You can contact the consumer protection agency in your state or territory.

ASQA cannot act on behalf of consumers to resolve disputes with providers over fees and refunds. If you have a contractual dispute with your provider and are seeking a refund, contact the consumer protection agency in your state or territory.

If you are seeking a refund because of the quality of training and assessment, you can lodge this part of your complaint with ASQA.

If you are seeking to report criminal activity such as theft or assault: Your complaint will be referred to the police in your state or territory.  
If your providers stops providing, or does not start providing, your course: You may contact the Tuition Protection Service.  
If you want to make a complaint about an organisation offering training that is not a registered training organisation (RTO) or not offering nationally recognised training: You can contact a consumer protection organisation, or seek legal advice. Unless the complaint relates to marketing and advertising that states or implies the organisation is an RTO or is offering nationally recognised training, ASQA has no jurisdiction in relation to other organisations offering training.
If you want to make a complaint about an RTO not registered with ASQA:

Submit complaints about registered training organisations:

If your complaint is about discrimination on the grounds of sex, disability, race or age: You can report your complaint to the Australian Human Rights Commission.  
If your complaint is about other discrimination: You may wish to find a legal representative to assist you with your dispute.  

Please submit your complaint using the online complaints form. This form asks you for information that ASQA requires to consider your complaint.

If you are unable to use the form, please contact the ASQA Info line on 1300 701 801.