Physiotherapists: Australian Examining Committee for Overseas Physiotherapists (AECOP)

If you intend to apply for migration to Australia under one of the General Skilled Migration categories, you must have a nominated occupation which is on the Skilled Occupations List at the time you apply. In order to make a valid application, you must have obtained a skills assessment from the relevant assessing authority for your nominated occupation.

AECOP is the assessing authority for the following occupation:

  • Physiotherapists

With the dissolution of the grouping system of eligibility, only New Zealand qualifications are now immediately acceptable for registration in Australia.

Intending Migrants with Qualifications Not Immediately Acceptable

In the majority of cases, the initial stage of the AECOP skills assessment will determine your eligibility to undertake the AECOP examinations process.

You will be assessed against 5 eligibility criteria. If deemed eligible to undertake the AECOP examinations process, you would need to undertake all exam components relevant to your case.

On successful completion of the AECOP examinations process, you would receive confirmation of your eligibility to apply to register to practise as a physiotherapist in Australia, and receive a statement confirming the suitability of your skills for the occupational category of Physiotherapist. You would then be eligible to proceed with your General Skilled Migration application.

AECOP Eligibility Criteria

The AECOP examinations procedure is available to overseas-qualified physiotherapists who, in addition to general requirements relating to their residency status, can demonstrate that:

  • The tertiary level studies leading to the physiotherapy qualification were equivalent in duration to no less than 3 academic years and the curriculum studied was sufficiently similar in theory and practice aspects (including clinical hours) to the curricula undertaken in Australia, and included a substantial element of supervised physiotherapy clinical practice. [Educational programs in Australia leading to a physiotherapy qualification involve a minimum of 4 years study and include substantial periods of supervised clinical practice.];
  • The course undertaken included theoretical and clinical components of cardio-respiratory, musculo-skeletal and neurological physiotherapy and of electrotherapy, similar in content and duration to physiotherapy education programs offered in Australia;
  • The course would qualify the candidate to be registered or licensed as a physiotherapist in the country in which the course was taken; and
  • If the candidate graduated 3 or more years prior to date of application, the candidate has practised as a physiotherapist for 2 out of the past 3 years, or the part-time equivalent. If the candidate graduated between 1 and 3 years prior to the date of application the candidate should have practised for at least two-thirds of the time period.

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