Australian Qualifications Framework

The Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) regulates all Australian qualifications and officially defines the level of education that each qualification title represents. Each qualification generally leads into the next qualification (see below) in the education framework.

Having a nationally standardised system makes it easier for students to pursue their education, as there is a clear pathway to follow. It also makes transferring between different states and territories or universities much easier, as there is no confusion caused by differing qualification titles and education levels.


The AQF is made up of ten levels:

AQF levelQualification Type
Level 1Certificate I
Level 2Certificate II
Level 3Certificate III
Level 4Certificate IV
Level 5Diploma
Level 6Advanced diploma
Associate degree
Level 7Bachelor degree
Level 8Bachelor honours degree
Vocational graduate certificate
Vocational graduate diploma
Graduate certificate
Graduate diploma
Level 9Masters degree (research)
Masters degree (coursework)
Masters degree (extended)
Level 10Doctoral degree
Higher doctoral degree


Accredited courses undergo a government-administered process of review, either directly through relevant authorities or indirectly through universities that are appointed ‘self-accrediting’ entities.  Private colleges must register with the AQF to be eligible to offer higher education qualifications. 

A list of all registered courses and providers; further information on AQF qualifications and learning pathways; and direct links to other relevant websites can be found on the AQF website.

You can find a list of all recognised Registered Training Organisations, accredited courses and training packages on the website.