Higher Education Regulation

Decision-making, regulation and governance for higher education are shared among the Australian Government, the State and Territory Governments, and the institutions themselves. Higher Education Providers must be established or recognized by or under the law of the Commonwealth, a State, or a Territory, and be approved by the Australian Government Minister for Education before they can receive grants or their students can receive assistance from the Commonwealth, under the Higher Education Support Act 2003 (HESA).


The Tertiary Education Quality Standards Agency (TEQSA) is the national accrediting body which:

  • Accredits qualifications developed by non-self-accrediting organisations and authorizes non-self-accrediting organizations to issue qualifications, and
  • Authorizes universities and designated higher education providers to accredit AQF qualifications which they themselves issue.


TEQSA maintains the National Register of Higher Education Providers which lists all providers, including authorized self-accrediting higher education providers and the qualifications they are authorized to issue. All Australian universities and other higher education providers must be registered by TEQSA and meet the Higher Education Threshold Standards.


The Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) is the national policy for regulated qualifications in Australian education and training which incorporates the qualifications from each education and training sector into a single comprehensive national qualifications framework.