Student Services and Amenities Fee

The compulsory Student Services and Amenities Fee (SSAF) contributes to the provision of many support, development and campus life services.

The Department of Education has advised the maximum annual charge is $303.00 in 2019 and $308.00 in 2020.

Eligible students have the option of a SA-HELP loan to pay the SSAF fee.

Please note, the SSAF is due by the incurral date each term/semester/hexamester. 

See the SSAF fee for:

UNSW Sydney coursework students


  • The Full-time fee is $101.00 per term
  • The Part-time fee is $75.75 per term


  • The Full-time fee is $102.65 per term
  • The Part-time fee is $76.95 per term

UNSW Canberra students


  • The Full-time fee is $151.50 per semester
  • The Part-time fee is $113.60 per semester


  • The Full-time fee is $154.00 per semester
  • The Part-time fee is $115.50 per semester

Research students


  • The Full-time fee is $75.75 per term
  • The Part-time fee is $56.80 per term


  • The Full-time fee is $77.00 per term
  • The Part-time fee is $57.75 per term

Please note, from 2020 this fee will be charged 4 times annually (includes the mandatory Summer term enrolment).

Students studying online courses


The SSAF fee for the 3 term model (3+) is:

  • $101.00 per term for Full-time study
  • $75.75 per term for Part-time study

The SSAF fee for the 6 term model (Hexamester) is:

  • $50.50 per term for Full-time study
  • $37.87 per term for Part-time study


The SSAF fee for the 3 term model (3+) is:

  • $102.65 per term for Full-time study
  • $76.95 per term for Part-time study

The SSAF fee for the 6 term model (Hexamester) is:

  • $51.30 per term for Full-time study
  • $38.45 per term for Part-time study

Please note UNSW reserves the right to vary student fees at any time during enrolment in line with relevant legislation.

More information

Incurral Dates

UNSW has determined the following dates where the SSAF is payable and/or where the SSAF debt is incurred:


Term 1                 17 March

Term 2                 30 June

Term 3                 13 October

Semester 1           31 March

Semester 2           18 August

Hexamester 4       18 July

Hexamester 5       12 September

Hexamester 6        7 November

The incurral date is the date in which the debt is incurred. There is no capacity under HESA 2003 to remit a SA-HELP debt incurred. UNSW will not refund this amount after the incurral date, even in cases where a student has met the remission requirements for special circumstances.


Detailed explanation about SSAF

1. The Student Services and Amenities Fee (SSAF) fee was established through the Student Services and Amenities Bill 2011. The Bill amends the Higher Education Support Act 2003.

2. UNSW has determined that it will charge the Fee to all students with the following exceptions:

  • Students enrolled in cross-institutional, PLuS Alliance or exchange programs studying with UNSW (where UNSW is not the ‘home’ institution). Students on exchange or cross-institutional at another institution where their primary degree is with UNSW (the ‘home’ institution), will still be subject to the SSAF charges.
  • All Defence-funded and non-Commonwealth supported students enrolled in a program at UNSW Canberra/ADFA.

Table 1 (below) provides more detail on liability.

3. The fee is levied on eligible students by the University as a contribution towards services and amenities for the whole student population. Unless explicitly exempted, all students are expected to contribute towards amenities and services. There is no provision to exempt students on the grounds of study or attendance mode (e.g. online or distance delivery; teaching hospital attendance), or that they might not personally use the services and amenities provided.

4. The SSAF maximum rate is published annually by The Department of Education & Training. Institutions can choose to charge up to that rate. The guidelines state that a student defined as part-time cannot be charged more than 75% of the maximum fee.

5. The fee is charged and payable on a term or semester basis, dependent on the student’s primary campus of study, study period model, career and study load (EFTSL).

To view the charges that may apply to you for a semester or term please refer to What you pay (above).

6. The incurral dates are set for each semester or term. All students are liable for the SSAF calculated based on their enrolment as at the incurral date for the semester or term. Incurral dates can be found on your Fee Statement each semester or term, or on this SA-HELP loan page.

7. Eligible students can elect to pay part of the full SSAF upfront to UNSW, or apply for a SA-HELP loan for the remainder or full value of the fee. If you choose to defer part or all of your fee, you are required to apply for a SA-HELP loan prior to the Incurral Date.

8. If you have elected to defer your SSAF you are still eligible to pay part or all of the liability up to the Incurral Date. After the Incurral Date has passed you can no longer make a SSAF payment to the University for that Semester or Term and must arrange payment to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) directly.

9. If you successfully apply for fee remission after the SSAF Incurral Date, you cannot have your SSAF refunded or remitted.

Table 1 - SSAF liability

Program / CareerFee / Funding TypeSSAF Liable?Comments
UndergraduateCommonwealth SupportedYesIncludes Undergraduate Commonwealth supported students at UNSW Canberra
PostgraduateCommonwealth SupportedYes 
ResearchResearch Training SchemeYes 
UndergraduateEnabling Programs (including UPP)Yes 
Non-AwardExcluding Cross-InstitutionalYesCross-Institutional students where UNSW is the home institution are not exempt.
UndergraduateInternational Fee-payingYes 
PostgraduateInternational Fee-payingYes 
PostgraduatePostgraduate Domestic Fee-payingYes 
UndergraduateUndergraduate Fee-payingYes 
Unless specified above, all students at UNSW Canberra are exempt from the SSAF charges.

Summary of SSAF income and expenditure

In 2017 UNSW contributed $16.5 million of expenditure towards the provision of student services captured by the SSAF legislation. A significant portion of that spend went directly to UNSW student organisation (ARC), totalling $4.864 million. At the time of notification (9 February 2018), the University received $12.4 million in SSAF income.

Below is a summary of expenditure, identified against the SSAF allowable categories of expenditure.

Summary of ExpenditureTotal Costs
Advocating students' interests in matters arising under the higher education provider's rules - contribution to Arc services$4,364,000
Supporting a sporting or other recreational activity by students:
- Sports services contribution to Arc$500,000
- Maintenance of Lifestyle Centre$331,000
- Maintenance of sports fields$494,000
Supporting a sporting or other recreational activity by students$426,000
Helping students secure accommodation$63,600
Helping students obtain employment or advice on careers$1,425,000
Advising on matters arising under the higher education provider's rules$911,500
Helping meet the specific needs of overseas students relating to their wellbeing, accommodation and employment$2,035,000
Promoting the health or wellbeing of students$2,233,000
Helping students develop skills for study, by means other than undertaking courses of study in which they are enrolled$1,291,000
Supporting Artistic activity by students$1,283,000
Giving students information to help them in their orientation and enrolment$1,153,000

*In 2017, UNSW contributed approximately $20 million to the refurbishment of the Roundhouse building which is the main heart of student life on campus.


Student consultation

The University is committed to consultation with student representatives about the provision of student services and met regularly in 2017 with democratically elected student representatives including student members of University Council, Arc and the Student Representative Council.

This consultation will continue in 2018 in a new format devised by the Student Leadership Group, endorsed by the DVC Academic and four meetings will be scheduled. The new format allows for broader range of student input into the SSAF spend and allows for a $250k specific SSAF fund to be annually allocated by Arc.

The dates for 2018 consultation are to be determined. You can provide your feedback to the Arc student representatives via the Arc website or to the student members of University Council via email: