Background

In October 2011, the Australian parliament passed legislation to allow Universities and other higher education providers to charge a compulsory Student Services and Amenities Fee (SSAF). During 2012 Australian universities, including the University of Newcastle, introduced a SSAF to improve services to students. The government has clearly set out what the funds can be spent on: http://www.innovation.gov.au/HigherEducation/StudentSupport/Pages/StudentServicesAndAmenities.aspx

The SSAF Student Consultative Group (SSAFSCG) and the SSAF Management Group (SSAFMG) were both established by the Vice-Chancellor in April 2012. The Vice-Chancellor approved amendments to the Terms of Reference for both groups in April 2013, to reflect the changes in organisational structure and responsibilities, and to increase the representation of undergraduate students on the SSAFSCG to better reflect the number of undergraduate students at the University.

The latest Terms of Reference can be accessed here:
SSAF Student Consultative Group
SSAF Management Group

The University is spending every dollar on student services - either completely new services or improvements to existing ones.

2012

Students were charged SSAF from Semester 2 2012 and extensive consultations were undertaken with students, representative and student associations, to determine what services students needed.

A full summary of SSAF Expenditure for 2012 can be found here.

2012 Terms of Reference - SSAF Student Consultative Group.

2013

Applying the Principles for Assessment of SSAF fund allocations, and after consultation with students and consideration of proposals from student associations, entities and other organisational units involved in delivery of services to students,a range of priority areas proposed for funding under the SSAF for 2013 have been approved.

Recent media enquiries have focused on SSAF expenditure at the Ourimbah campus. The SSAF priorities and areas of focus at Ourimbah campus for 2013, as approved by the University Executive Committee are available here.

Your feedback is important and if you would like to comment, raise suggestions or meet with senior University staff to discuss any of the projects, you can email fees@newcastle.edu.au, or go to the website Experience Newcastle, or tell us confidentially through feedback on AskUoN.

For 2013, the maximum amount a student can pay is $273 per year and may be less depending on your mode and study load. The SSAF will be charged per term to a maximum payment of $136.50 per 6 month period.

Level of Study Type of student CampusLocation Enrolment Annual maximum SSAF 2013
Undergraduate OR Postgraduate Coursework Domestic On-campus FT $273
PT $204
Domestic Off-campus / Online / Distance / Port Macquarie FT and PT $204
Domestic Through UON partner FT and PT $204
International On-campus FT $273
PT $204
International Off-campus / Online / Distance FT and PT $204
International Offshore through UON partner FT and PT No charge
Research Domestic On-campus FT $273
PT $204
International On-campus FT $273
PT $204
Domestic Distance FT and PT $204
International Distance FT and PT $204
Enabling program Domestic On-campus FT and PT No charge
International
Other studies Exchange (inbound) On-campus FT No charge
Cross-institutional (inbound) On-campus FT $273
PT $204
ELICOS On-campus FT No charge
Exchange (outbound) On-campus FT $273
Non-award On-campus FT $273
PT $204
Study Abroad (inbound) On-campus FT No charge

Billing

The 2013 SSAF will be invoiced upfront, seperately from your course fees in each term you are enrolled. Once the SSAF bill is generated you will be notified via email that your SSAF bill is available in myHub.

SSAF Billing and Payment Schedule 2013
Billing Cycle SSAF Bill Generated SSAF Payment Due Date
Trimester 1, 2013 4 February 2013 25 February 2013
Semester 1, 2013 4 March 2013 31 March 2013
Trimester 2, 2013 27 May 2013 17 June 2013
Semester 2, 2013 29 July 2013 31 August 2013
Trimester 3, 2013 9 September 2013 30 September 2013

2014

In 2014 SSAF will be charged each term of study to a maximum of $281 for the year (full time study) and $210 (partial fee).

Your input and feedback is invited for the 2014 proposed SSAF expenditure. Please see details of the proposals below and respond by emailing us at ssaffeedback@newcastle.edu.au

The University has recently advised the student presidents and managers of student entities and associations that the process of consultation with elected student representatives to inform the areas of focus for SSAF in 2014 is getting underway. This will be concentrated over the coming weeks to enable maximum student input during Semester 2, 2013.

The primary focus of consultation for SSAF 2014 will occur through the SSAF Student Consultative Group (SSAFSCG) and will be further informed by review of the Student Feedback at University of Newcastle (SFUN) survey conducted late last year. Input will also be sought via social media and other formats.

Discussion and consultation with the elected student representative boards and committees of the student entities and associations will also inform the priorities and decisions for 2014.

Your feedback and input into the SSAF process at the University of Newcastle is important and will play an integral part in determination of priorities and areas of focus for SSAF expenditure 2014.

Student entities and campus service providers at Callaghan and Ourimbah recently provided an initial list of capital amenity projects at the respective campuses, for consideration under the SSAF for 2014.  In addition, students at Sydney, Tamworth, Port Macquarie and other, smaller locations have been consulted to identify particular needs or ideas at those locations.  A summary of these initial ideas is located below for comment by all students and entities.  Additional ideas and priorities may be identified through the formal consultative mechanism with the SSAF SCG (see above), with entities or directly from your input and feedback.

The University will apply the same principles for assessment as have informed decisions for 2012 and 2013, and the process of consultation will follow a similar format, as described above.

Proposed 2014 Student Services

Proposed 2014 Student Amenities

Provide feedback here: ssaffeedback@newcastle.edu.au

Payment Options

If you are an Australian citizen or a permanent humanitarian visa holder (resident in Australia), who is enrolled in a program of study with UoN, you may choose to:

  • pay the full SSAF amount upfront;
  • pay some of the SSAF upfront and get a SA-HELP loan for the remainder; or
  • apply for a SA-HELP loan for the full SSAF amount

All other students must pay the SSAF upfront by the payment due date on their SSAF bill. SSAF bills will be issued each term of study and can be accessed via myHub.

Please note: Students who are enrolled in non-award and cross-institutional study are not eligible for SA-HELP loan assistance and must pay the SSAF in full to the University.

SSAF bills will be issued each term of study and can be accessed via myHub.

Enabling (Open Foundation, Newstep, Yapug and International Foundation), and incoming International Study Abroad students will not be charged SSAF in 2013.

SA-HELP 

Eligible students can request assistance from the Commonwealth government to defer the fee payment through the Higher Education Loan Program (HELP) known as SA-HELP.

To be eligible for SA-HELP, you must meet all of the following conditions:

  • be an Australian citizen or permanent humanitarian visa-holder, resident in Australia
  • be enrolled in a course of study (including bridging study for overseas-trained professional or enabling courses) with a higher education provider
  • meet the Tax File Number (TFN) requirements, and
  • complete and submit a Request for SA-HELP Assistance form (eCAF) by the census date.

To access SA-HELP you must apply for it, even if you have deferred your tuition fees using HECS-HELP or FEE-HELP.

Students who want to take up the SA-HELP loan option will need to complete a SA-HELP Commonwealth Assistance Form (eCAF) as a part of the enrolment process. Find our more about SA-HELP.

Please note: Students who have already completed an eCAF for either HECS-HELP or FEE-HELP will still need to complete a new eCAF for SA-HELP.

Students who wish to take advantage of this option for study need to:

  1. Log in to myHub during the re-enrolment period
  2. Click on 'View My SA-HELP eCAF' on the left hand side of myHub under the 'my Finances' tab.
  3. Complete the 'Request for Commonwealth Assistance - SA-HELP' form (you will need to enter your Tax File Number if you have not previously supplied this to the University)

Students who don't complete a SA-HELP eCAF by census date will be required to pay the fee up front

View a video on how to complete the eCAF form for SA-HELP.

SSAF Refund

Please refer to the Student Fees Refund Procedure.

For more information why not AskUoN or contact fees@newcastle.edu.au