Australian awards and honours are made available either by nomination or by application.
Each award or medal has particular eligibility requirements. There are a number of agencies with responsibility for administering awards in the Australian honours system, including:
- The Australian Honours and Awards Secretariat at Government House in Canberra
- The Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet
- The Directorate of Honours and Awards at the Department of Defence
Further information on the application or nomination process (including forms where these are applicable) and eligibility requirements for each award can be found by clicking on the relevant link.
Awards administered by The Australian Honours and Awards Secretariat in Canberra
The Australian Honours and Awards Secretariat is located at Government House in Canberra. Its role is to provide the support necessary for the Governor-General to carry out his/her responsibilities relating to the independent administration of the Australian honours system. The awards administered by The Australian Honours and Awards Secretariat are based either on nominations from the community, or via specific organisations:
The honours and awards that are based on nominations from the public either by an individual or community group are:
Honours and awards that are based on nominations from an eligible organisation are:
- Ambulance Service Medal
- Australian Antarctic Medal
- Australian Fire Service Medal
- Australian Police Medal
- Emergency Services Medal
- National Medal
- National Emergency Medal
- National Police Service Medal
- Police Overseas Service Medal
- Public Service Medal
For further information about these awards contact the Australian Honours and Awards Secretariat or visit the Governor-General's website.
Awards administered by the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet
In addition to advising Portfolio Ministers on the operation of Australia's honours system, the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet administers the following awards:
Honours and awards administered by the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet that were based on nominations but are no longer available are:
- Australian Sports Medal
- Centenary Medal (this medal was awarded those Australian citizens born on or before 31 December 1901 and who lived to celebrate the centenary of federation on 1 January 2001).
For further information on these awards contact the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet.
Awards administered by the Department of Defence
The Directorate of Honours and Awards at the Department of Defence is responsible for the administration of defence-related awards, including service and campaign medals, long service awards, and foreign medals awarded to Australians for service during the Vietnam conflict.
Click on the awards below for more information on how the medals are awarded.
Distinguished Service Decorations
Conspicuous Service Decorations
Other defence medals
Application based awards
Australian service and campaign medals are awarded to defence force and police personnel by their respective organisations for operational service. Application processes may be instituted for retrospective award of medals.
- Afghanistan Medal
- Australian Active Service Medal 1945-1975
- Australian Active Service Medal
- Australian Service Medal 1939-1945
- Australian Service Medal 1945-1975
- Australian Service Medal
- Iraq Medal
- Police Overseas Service Medal
- Rhodesia Medal
- Vietnam Logistic and Support Medal
- Vietnam Medal
Long service awards for defence, police, other uniformed personnel and voluntary organisations involved in hazardous occupations, are awarded after a qualifying period of service. Application processes are handled internally by the relevant organisation.
- Australian Cadet Forces Service Medal
- Defence Force Service Medal
- Defence Long Service Medal
- National Medal
- Reserve Force Medal
Awards that are made to defence personnel on recommendation following a competition
Other Defence awards
Guidance on approval to accept and wear foreign awards offered to Australian Defence Force members during the Vietnam War by the following governments can be sought by contacting the Directorate of Honours and Awards, Department of Defence.
- United States of America
- Former government of South Vietnam
- Former government of Cambodia
Honours and awards that were based on applications by the recipient or a recommendation on their behalf but are no longer available are:
For further information on defence-related awards contact the Directorate of Honours and Awards.
There is more information on this website in the section about all the awards and medals in the Australian honours system, including details on how the medals are awarded.