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Transforming the Collection of Student Information

TCSI.SUPPORT [at] servicesaustralia.gov.au (subject: TCSI%20enquiry) ()

This page outlines everything you need to know about Transforming the Collection of Student Information (TCSI).

Use the tabs below to navigate this page and remain up to date about all things TCSI. Use the tiles, top right, to navigate away from this page to the collection of TCSI webinars and or to contact us directly.


What's New?

TCSI is a program driven by collaboration and innovation and as a result things are constantly evolving. For your convenience all of the TCSI team's latest advancements and achievements will be listed below, with reference to the date they were published.

26 March 20: Keep up to date with our eNews. Our latest Higher education TCSI update includes information about reporting your 2019 higher education course completions and 2020 higher education student data.

20 March 20: Extension to the TCSI transition period - Following concerns raised with the TCSI team relating to COVID-19 and how this continues to cause major disruptions to education providers and TCSI developers, we will be extending the transition period for providers to on-board to TCSI. - Read more.

16 January 20:TCSI system updates have been scheduled for the afternoon of Friday 17 January. Providers may experience outages over the weekend for TCSI Data Entry and TCSI APIs. Other systems are not impacted, including HEPCAT, HEIMS, myHELPbalance, and eCAF.

02 October 19:The newly released TCSI testing fact sheet includes information on how you can test your TCSI compatible solution at different stages of the project. Get your copy of the Opens in a new window: fact sheet (PDF) from the "Transition" tab.

The file templates for uploading data in TCSI have been updated. We also have a new guide for both higher education and VET Student Loans providers. Check them out at:

24 September 19: An update to the Ministerial Notice is now available in the "2020 Reporting Requirements" tab under the Higher education requirements.

25 July 19: The VET Student Loans 2020 file templates are now available in the "2020 Reporting Requirements" tab under the VET Student Loans requirements.

24 July 19: The Higher education 2020 file templates are now available in the "2020 Reporting Requirements tab" under the Higher education requirements.

25 June 19: The Ministerial Notice is now available in the "2020 Reporting Requirements" tab under the Higher education requirements.

13 June 19: The latest versions of the 2020 Data element specifications and the Higher Education data framework are now available under 2020 Reporting Requirements. We have provided each of the documents with a track changes version so you can see what has changed since your feedback was submitted in March.

24 May 19: The latest versions of the 2020 VSL Reporting Requirements are now available under 2020 Reporting Requirements. We have provided each of the documents with a track changes version so you can see what has changed since your feedback was submitted in March.

3 Apr 19: Our recent webinar presentations and recordings are available in our TCSI webinar gallery.


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What is TCSI?

TCSI (pronounced 'taxi') is a joint project to transform how student information is collected.

The Department of Education (the department) and the Department of Human Services (DHS), are working together with education providers and software developers to build a compatible solution that will provide a seamless experience for providers and students.

For education providers it will: reduce duplication, be simpler and more intuitive to use, resolve system deficiencies and improve data availability. For students it will: Make DHS student claims simpler, improve payment accuracy and help maintain their student payment to complete their studies. TCSI

The TCSI solution will replace the Higher Education Provider Client Assistance Tool (HEPCAT) for all education providers and the Centrelink Academic Reassessment Transformation (CART) for universities.

2020 Reporting Requirements

These documents are working and therefore subject to change, update and alteration.

Data element specs

Higher education requirements

VET Student Loans requirements

A summary of changes from version 0.1 are listed in the June TCSI newsletter article.

TCSI Validations

The TCSI validations are subject to change until testing is complete on the TCSI solution. Any changes will not be tracked between versions.

Notifications and Scheduled Validations

Fact sheets on the TCSI notifications and scheduled validations are available in the "Fact Sheets" tab.

Earlier versions of documents can be found in the "Archive" tab.


The department held workshops in 2016 and 2017 to develop the business plan for a new data solution. These workshops invited feedback from co‑design contributors (CDC) nominated by Universities Australia, ANUPCOPHE and ACTPET. We released our discussion paper in January 2019 and received 60 responses, which informed the TCSI solution as it exists today.

The Solution

The Department of Education and DHS are working with the CDC to prepare advice and recommendations on:

  • the purposes and uses of data and scope of the collection
  • preferred methods and location of collection
  • data governance, privacy and access issues
  • resourcing and costs associated with the collection
  • co‑ordination and interaction of existing data and related initiatives

Our cohort of co‑design contributors was expanded in March 2018 to include:

  • Representatives from each group of universities, including the non‑affiliated universities
  • 4 Oracle (Peoplesoft) providers, 4 Tribal Callista providers, 4 Technology One providers and 5 providers who develop their own solutions internally
  • 5 non‑university providers
  • 7 dual providers, including 4 TAFEs

Since this time, the CDC and the wider sector has continued to play a vital role in shaping the TCSI solution.

Prior to 6 March 2019, the TSCI team called for sector feedback pertaining to the 2020 Reporting Requirements. The insightful ideas and suggestions offered by the sector have informed recent changes to the 2020 Reporting Requirements.


The origins of the TCSI project began in September 2016, the project has made significant advancements since this time and is quickly approaching conclusion. All documents pertaining to the timeline and transition period can be found below and will continue to be revised and updated until TCSI has replaced HEPCAT and delivered us to the 'new world' of data collection and management.

TCSI journey maps and transition checklist

The new TCSI provider journey map was released at the 2019 Roadshow along with the transition checklist. Download your copy to support planning at your organisation as we all transition to TCSI.


PRODA is the authentication method for TCSI and facilitates the secure access to government services online.

Preparation for PRODA will take place in three phases.

If you have any questions regarding PRODA please send them through to TCSI.SUPPORT [at] servicesaustralia.gov.au.

TCSI testing

The "TCSI – testing for providers" fact sheet includes information on how you can test your TCSI compatible solution at different stages of the project.

TCSI Release 1 – October 2019

This release delivers the APIs and portal functionality to report student, reference and enrolment data. This includes:

  • Higher education courses of study, courses, students, course admissions, units of study, unit enrolments, campuses and courses on campus.
  • All VSL data groups

The APIs for these data groups incorporate the complete technical solution, including all specifications and swagger files, to support Release 1.

TCSI Release 2

This release delivers the APIs for the remaining higher education submissions:

  • OS‑HELP, SA‑HELP, University staff, applications, preferences, and offers.

We anticipate the APIs and Portal functionality for Release 2 will be available towards the end of March 2020.

Reporting dates during the transition

As you consider how best to move to the new reporting arrangements from December 2019, you will have the option to:

  • Report your remaining 2019 submissions and 2020 data using a TCSI compatible solution, or
  • Report your remaining 2019 submissions using HEPCAT, and commence reporting 2020 data using TCSI as soon as you complete your HEPCAT submissions.

Prepopulating the TCSI Database (Migration)

HEIMS holds the authoritative source of information on higher education in Australia and therefore it is important that the value of this dataset is not lost or overlooked. Therefore, verified data will continue to be stored for statistical purposes, providing the evidence base for publications and policy‑making. In line with current practice, verified data cannot be revised.

HEIMS also holds critical live data that supports ongoing administration. As we move to TCSI, we need to make sure we take the critical live information with us.

Please refer to the attachment below for greater detail around how each element will be treated.

Requesting your once-off data extract

To support transition and data matching at your organisation, the department is making a data extract available. This will show all the data that has been migrated from HEIMS to the TCSI database up to the day your extract is processed.

To request your data extract, please nominate a single file type when you contact us at TCSI.SUPPORT [at] servicesaustralia.gov.au.

You can choose from:

  • JSON (JavaScript object notation)
  • XML (extensible markup language)
  • CSV (comma separated values, delimited by "tabs")
  • Example CSV data extract.zip

You will also need to confirm the email address for the person requesting the data extract. The email must match an active HEIMS user and this person will be responsible for following the same terms and conditions for accessing the data extract as they must for any other HEIMS application (e.g. HEIMS Online).

The department will send an invitation link to the nominated email address and you will need to either register an account or login if you are a previous user of this system. Step by step instructions on how to download your files are provided in the "Guide on how to access your migrated data". You can follow up with TCSI.SUPPORT [at] servicesaustralia.gov.au if you haven’t received a link within 5 working days.


Our ongoing engagement with the sector based on your feedback the TCSI team has compiled frequently asked questions (FAQs) surrounding the TCSI.

General information on TCSI

What is TCSI?

The Tertiary Collection of Student Information or TCSI (pronounced 'taxi') is a joint project between the Department of Education (department) and Department of Human Services (DHS) to transform how student information is collected.

Which education providers will be affected by TCSI?

Any providers that report data through the HEPCAT system will need to use the new TCSI system to report data to the Australian Government. This includes HELP providers, VSL providers and higher education providers reporting the TEQSA PIR collection.

Which data collections are included in the TCSI project?

The new data system will be used for all data previously reported via HEPCAT or HEIMS Administration. The new structure for data collections is set out in the 2020 reporting requirements for higher education and VSL, within the "2020 Reporting Requirements" tab.

The new data system will also replace DHS’s student reporting system, CART. Components of data collected under the new system will be used for student payments.

How will data be submitted under the new system?

The preferred submission method will be via automated processes known as business to government (B2G) application programming interfaces (APIs). APIs send data from a provider's student management system to the government with a minimum of manual processing.

Providers who are not yet ready to adopt the B2G solution will be able to submit data files and web forms via an internet browser based portal called TCSI Data Entry.

Will TCSI affect procedures for HELP estimates, variations or payments?

Estimates and payments processes are not being revised as part of TCSI.

What training will be made available for provider administration staff?

Webinars and technical documents for the TCSI project are published progressively on the TCSI Resources page.

The department will continue to develop training materials and webinars to support the use of tools and interfaces that we build.

What does TCSI mean for students?

For Student Management Software (SMS) developers

For education providers

Reporting Requirements

Element specific FAQs


The TCSI archives house previous versions of documents and information circulated and dated prior to January 2019. Some of the information may be outdated so be sure to check the "2020 Reporting Requirements" tab for the latest details.

Webinar recordings are housed in our TCSI webinar gallery where you can also access the slides we have presented.


We recommend viewing this presentation in PowerPoint (PPSX) then clicking F5 so you can see the animations.

TCSI Roadshow feedback - webinar presentation

We recommend viewing this presentation in PowerPoint (PPTX) then clicking F5 so you can see the animations.

TCSI Proposed Solution

We recommend viewing this presentation in PowerPoint (PPSX) then clicking F5 so you can see the animations on the solution design.