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Defer your offer

Received an offer, but not ready to dive into study?

Depending on your course, you may have the option to defer your offer for up to one year. This means we’ll hold a place for you to enrol in your course the following semester or year.

Deferment is open to most students: Coursework or research, domestic or international students are able to request to defer, though not all courses can be deferred. International students on a student visa can only defer subject to conditions outlined in the National Code

All applications for deferral are assessed on a case-by-case basis.

How to apply to defer

You can request a deferral through Sydney Student during the process of accepting your offer.

You will receive the outcome of your request by email:

  • if your deferral application is accepted, a new offer will be issued
  • if your application to defer is rejected, you can still accept your offer by following the instructions provided with your outcome response
  • if you wish to delay the start of your course for longer than a year, you will need to reapply to the University.

If you're a domestic student, and you have already accepted your offer, you will need to contact our admissions team at

If you're an international student, and you have already accepted your offer and paid your tuition fees, you can still apply to defer if you have not applied for your student visa. Contact our admissions team at If your application to defer is approved, we do not hold your place – we make you an offer for the following semester or year. A new electronic Confirmation of Enrolment (eCOE) will be issued when you accept your second offer. If you are on a packaged visa (with USFP or CET) you will need to submit the ‘Break of Package Request Form’ to the Compliance Team at

Postgraduate research students should be aware that funds to support your project may only be available for a limited amount of time, and deferment may impact your access to funding.

Already started your course?

You still have options.

While it’s too late to defer your offer once you’ve commenced your course, you can apply to suspend your studies. See our information on suspending your studies.

International students on a student visa can only defer their enrolment on the grounds of compassionate or compelling circumstances. For further details, please refer to the National Code link at: Standard 9 - Deferring, suspending or cancelling the overseas student's enrolment.

Four reasons to consider deferring:

1. Start uni refreshed

Taking time off to travel, work or volunteer abroad may come as a welcome break after the rigours of your HSC. Some time out will give you the opportunity to think about where you really want to go in life.

2. See more of the world

Taking a gap year to explore other cultures can make a big difference to your personal development and future employment prospects. Travelling or working abroad will introduce you to people from all walks of life, teach you new skills and develop your confidence.

3. Boost your grades

A study by the Sydney School of Education and Social Work in 2013 showed that students who took a gap year achieved higher marks at university than students who entered straight after school.

4. Earn some cash

Taking a year to work full time and build up your savings account is a great way to ensure financial stress won’t impact your studies once you get here.

International student visa holders should note that there are specific conditions relating to deferment and all of the above reasons may not be applicable.

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