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Hi Victoria, welcome to the expatforum!

The first thing you will have to determine is how many points you currently qualify for. Australian immigration requires a minimum of 65 points for most visas. There are many factors, here is a link to the explanation of the points categories:


For me, as an example:
Age: 40 --> 15 pts
Experience: 8+ years --> 15 pts
Recognised education ---> 10 pts
IELTS superior score (yet to achieve this one) ---> 20 pts

Those are the points I could get on my own - which totals 60. So I need at least 5 more points. This is why I have to go for the state sponsored visa (176) because that gives you 5 points. If I had 65 points on my own, I would have gone for the 175 instead.

If you can find an employer who will sponsor you, you don't have to meet any points requirement. This may be the best path for you, but take a look at the various points categories in the link above to see how you fare.

re: state sponsorship, you have to check the state you are interested in to determine if your occupation is on their SOL (skilled occupation list). Here's a link to the Queensland one:

Looks like there are several different types of Registered Nurses on the list (good news!). You'll notice that they all do have a minimum IELTS score of 7 required (so you would have to site the IELTS test if you go the 176 visa route).

Best of luck to you!

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