Student Registration with Professional Boards

Important information for students in Medical Radiation Science, Midwifery, Nursing, Occupational Therapy, Pharmacy, Physiotherapy and Podiatry undertaking the following:

  • Undergraduate Bachelor degrees;
  •  Graduate Entry Masters; and
  •  The Australian Registered Nurse/Midwife Training Programs.

Students studying in the above programs have Student Registration requirements under national legislation governing registration in health professions. Legislation requires students enrolled in these programs to have Student Registration with the relevant National Registration Board. The Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) manages registration for all of these Boards.

What does Student Registration mean?

Students studying in the above programs are required by legislation to be registered on the Student Register of the relevant Registration Board. No student may remain active in the program (even if not enrolled in courses/on leave) in any year without a current student registration.  The University is required by legislation to ensure that no student without the required Student Registration is enrolled in these programs. Students unable to achieve Student Registration or who have their Student Registration removed by a Board will lose their place in the program.

Is there a fee for Student Registration?

No, legislation requires that Student Registration is free. 

Do I apply for Student Registration?

No. The University provides AHPRA with lists of enrolled students. It also notifies AHPRA if a student withdraws from the program, is discontinued or otherwise ceases to be enrolled in the program. 

For how long does the initial Student Registration apply?

Student Registration applies for the duration of the student's enrolment in the program. Renewal of student registration is not required during the program. However, if a student ceases to be enrolled and subsequently returns to the program then Student Registration must be reactivated and that is done by the University by notifying AHPRA.

I was on the Student Register of a State board before national registration came in. Does that registration still apply?

All students registered with State boards were automatically transitioned to the relevant national Student Register and are also on the lists supplied to AHPRA by the University. State student registration no longer applies.

Does the University have a legal right to provide my details to AHPRA for Student Registration and other legislated reasons?

Yes. The University is required by legislation to submit details to registration Boards when requested/required and is therefore not in breach of the Privacy Act in doing so. 

How do I know that I'm registered and do I get a registration card?

Once AHPRA processes student registration for students listed on the enrolment lists provided to them by the University, they notify the University that all students on the list are registered. The students are then notified of their registration by an email from their School to the student's official University email address. AHPRA do not provide student registration ID cards to students, nor do they provide student registration ID numbers. [Students who received a Student Registration ID card from a State Board please note that the card is no longer valid.] 

Does Student Registration require meeting the English language standard of the Board?

No.  The Board's English language standard does not apply for Student Registration. The English language requirement of the University program must be met by international Students.  However, it is important for all students (domestic and international) to note the English language requirements for registration in the profession on completion of your program.  These can be checked by going to the Board website/Registration Standards/ English Language Standard. The English language standard for entry to the profession is generally higher (in most cases) than the University's English requirements for entry to the program. Students are encouraged to therefore take seriously the need to develop their English language skills at every opportunity throughout the degree.

Is Student Registration the same as Limited or Transitional Registration?

No. Student Registration is for students who are in a program leading to initial entry to a profession. Limited or Transitional Registration is for a person (including a postgraduate student) who is already a registered health professional in another country but is required to hold registration as a health professional in Australia while they complete a postgraduate program involving placement. Limited or Transitional registration is also for a person who has completed a degree leading to entry to a profession but needs to complete an internship before full registration (such as in Pharmacy).

What are the options should the registration Board refuse to register a student or remove a student's registration?

The legislation allows for an appeal process should registration be refused or removed. If a student receives notification from a Board that their registration has been refused, modified to include restrictions, or removed, they should immediately contact their Program Director (name available on the program website) or the following:

Dr Rhys Williams
Division Director: Services, Division of Health Sciences
Emailrhys.williams@unisa.edu.au        Tel: (618) 8302 2288

If student registration is refused or removed, the University may offer the student a place in a program where registration is not required, if a place in such a program is available and the student meets that program's entry requirements.

Does withdrawal from the program require notification to the Board?

Yes. The legislation makes this a responsibility of the University. Students who decide to permanently discontinue their studies (as opposed to taking leave) must formally withdraw as follows:

IF YOU DECIDE NOT TO CONTINUE YOUR PROGRAM OF STUDIES, THEN YOU MUST COMPLETE A "WITHDRAW FROM PROGRAM" FORM - AVAILABLE AT CAMPUS CENTRAL or at the following site:http://www.unisa.edu.au/student/forms/default.asp 

If a student does not formally withdraw from a program, but takes no part in it for a period of time, they can be "deemed" to have withdrawn in conditions outlined in the University's Enrolment policy A48.5. The link to the policy is below.

http://www.unisa.edu.au/policies/policies/academic/A48.asp 

Medical Fitness requirements under the legislation

Under the legislation the University and individual health professionals (which includes University staff who are health professionals) are required to notify the Board if they consider a student to have an impairment that may put the public at substantial risk of harm.  The University has processes to fairly handle this situation. These are outlined in the Assessment Policies and Procedures Manual (APPM), under "Practicum, Field and Clinical Placements".  (The APPM is annually reviewed.)http://www.unisa.edu.au/policies/codes/academic/default.asp 

The final decision about "medical fitness" of a person is taken by the Registration Board, not the University. One of the options the Registration Boards have under the legislation is to provide student registration with specific limitations.  In situations where a medical fitness issue has caused the Board to refuse student registration the University will discuss the available options with the student. These may include internal transfer to a program with no student registration requirements.

Important regarding student responsibilities

Students have defined rights and responsibilities under the legislation. It is important that students are aware of the content of the legislation and their rights and responsibilities under it. For example, students have a mandatory responsibility (clause 131 of the legislation) to notify their Board if they:

  • Have been charged with an offence, or convicted or have been found guilty of an offence punishable by 12 months imprisonment or more;
  •  Had their registration suspended or cancelled under the law of another country that provides for the registration of students.

Students must keep the University informed of any change in relation to their registration status. This includes refusal of initial registration, removal of registration or imposition of limitations on registration. Notification of any of these events should be made to your Program Director or the Division Director: Services. 

Professional Registration on graduation

Final year students must monitor their national Board website for details about graduate registration. National Boards invite students to pre-register 4-6 weeks before they are due to complete the program. The University's responsibility in graduate registration is limited only to providing a report to AHPRA of students who have met all the requirements of the education program and are therefore eligible to graduate. Students must ensure they complete all the graduation requirements requested of them by Campus Central - eg, confirming name on parchment.  The report to AHPRA is generated only when all this information is received from the student.

Once the report goes to AHPRA, registration cannot be confirmed by AHPRA until all the requirements of eligibility for professional registration are met - eg English language standard. The University plays no part in this process.