International Education Sector Peak Bodies and Allied Groups

Australian International Education peak bodies advocate for the improvement of the industry by partnering with organisations within it.

Education sector peak bodies

Universities Australia

Universities Australia (UA) was established on 22 May 2007 as the peak body representing the university sector and replaced the Australian Vice-Chancellors’ Committee (AVCC).

The AVCC dates back to May 1920, when Vice-Chancellors at Australia’s then six universities met in Sydney and established a committee and secretariat. The Review of the AVCC in 2006 recommended the establishment of Universities Australia to represent Australia’s universities.

UA aims to influence the national policy framework in which Australia’s universities operate in ways that affirm Australia’s position as a highly innovative and educated nation. Based in Canberra, UA produces an extensive research and advocacy portfolio.

TAFE Directors Australia

Australia’s TAFE Institute network is the largest and most diverse tertiary education sector in Australia with more than 1000 campuses located across Central Business Districts (CBD), suburban, regional and remote locations, with many institutes offering further services throughout the Asia-Pacific and other offshore regions.

TAFE Directors Australia (TDA) was established in 1998. It is the peak national body incorporated to represent Australia’s 58 government owned Technical and Further Education (TAFE) institutes and university TAFE divisions, and the Australia-Pacific Technical College (APTC).

The core business of TDA is supporting its member institutes, advocating for quality skills in Australia, and managing a range of international education and training projects.

Independent Tertiary Education Council Australia

The Independent Tertiary Education Council Australia (ITECA) is the peak body representing the private education and training sector in Australia.

Founded in 1992, ITECA was known as the Australian Council for Private Education and Training (ACPET).  The transition from ACPET to ITECA reflects the commitment of providers from across the sector to create one single organisation that represents the independent higher education, vocational education and training sectors.

The ITECA Higher Education Network brings together more than half of the independent providers in the higher education sector.

The Independent Tertiary Education Council Australia (ITECA) is a membership-based peak body bringing together independent providers in the higher education, vocational education and training sectors. Individually and collectively these providers share a commitment to providing students and their employers with the quality outcomes they are looking for.

The ITECA Vocational Education and Training Network provides the membership vehicle for independent providers that deliver training to around two-thirds of all students undertaking vocational education and training in Australia.


English Australia

English Australia (EA) is the national peak body for the English language sector of international education in Australia.

It represents over 120 member colleges throughout Australia that provide quality English language programs to students and professionals from around the world. Over 80% of international students learning English in Australia study with an English Australia member college.

As an association, English Australia has a focus on representing member colleges whose core business is English language teaching, delivering best practice support and expertise to member colleges; and providing the English language sector with global leadership.

Independent Schools Council Australia

Independent Schools Council Australia (ISCA)

The Independent Schools Council of Australia (ISCA) represents the interests of the Independent school sector on a national basis such as in relation to Australian Government funding and representation on national policy making bodies. ISCA represents independent schools, working with its member associations to promote choice, diversity and partnership in education and advocating for the provision of ongoing, sustainable levels of Australian Government support.

The Council of Private Higher Education

The Council of Private Higher Education (COPHE) was established in 2001 to highlight the contribution made by the private sector to higher education in Australia.  COPHE represents 50 private higher education providers, including private universities, which enrol almost 10 per cent of Australian higher education students across 80 campuses across Australia. COPHE members are both for profit and not-for-profit institutions and educate domestic and international students in undergraduate and postgraduate programs.

International education groups

The Council of International Students Western Australia is an independent, voluntary, non-profit group promoting the wellbeing of international students studying in Western Australia.

All CISWA activities are directed by a voluntary Executive Council consisting of current/retired staff from a variety of WA Education Providers. The Executive Council meets on a monthly basis.

Originally funded by AusAid, CISWA was established in1963 in response to the demand for support services for the 1000 international students studying in Western Australia. Over fifty years on, CISWA remains the only organization of its kind in Australia, though the number of international students in WA has grown to over 50,000.

CISWA supports the staff who work with international students, running an affordable Professional Development (PD) Program and an Annual Winter Conference currently in its 24th year.

VISION International

Vision International (An Association of Australian Schools) was established as VISION (Inc) in 1993 in response to the need for people in schools that enrol full-fee paying students to network and provide mutual support in dealing with students from other cultures. VISION International aims to enhance the quality of the educational experience of international students in schools.