Saturday, 24 July 2010

Tier 4 UK Student Visa Changes

Once again the UKBA is making a series changes to the Tier 4 student visa.

The Level of English Language Study: from the 23rd of July 2010 the minimum level of English language course that will be allowed under Tier 4 will be LEVEL B2 of the Common European Framework of Referencee. The previous exceptions to this level which previously applied to government sponsored language students and those students studying a pre-sessional English Language course before studying a degree STILL REMAIN IN PLACE.

Students Applying to Change to a different education institute
: From the 23rd July 2010 existing Tier 4 students who want to change to a Highly Trusted Sponsor will be able to begin their studies while they are waiting for the UK Border Agency to process their application to change sponsor.

Students that are applying to change to an A or B rated sponsor will NOT be allowed to start studying at the institution until they receive a positive answer from the UK Border Agency BUT the UKBA has put some procedures in place that should help avoid delays in students beginning there studies at A or B rated sponsors.

US Student Loans: Recent changes to the way the USA Govt processes Student Loans, From 1 July 2010, UK Institutions participating in the William D Ford Federal Direct Loan Program will be authorized to give Federal Direct Loans to students from the USA wishing to Study in the UK.

This change also affects applicants wishing to study under the Tier 4 route, and the UKBA has drafted a template letter for use under the Tier 4. All UK sponsors should use this letter when accepting prospective students with loans from the USA.

English Language Tests On the 12 August 2010 the requirement for sponsors to assess potential students' level of English will change.

If a Tier 4 student will be studyign a course that is below NQF level 6, using a Confirmation of Acceptance to Study issued on or after 12 August 2010, the Tier 4 Sponsor MUST ENSURE that the student has an acceptable level of English- Level B1 of the Common European Framework of Reference by showing:

:that they are from a Majority English Speaking Country listed below:
Antigua and Barbuda, Australia,the Bahamas, Barbados, Belize,Canada, Dominica,Grenada,Guyana, Jamaica, New Zealand,St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago, the United States of America

OR that they have completed a course on Tier 4 (child) student which lasted at least 6 months and ended no more than two years before the date on the CAS

OR have passed an English language test with one of the approved English Language Test Providers and received a minimum level of B1 in all four areas (Reading, writing, speaking and listening). You can have a look at the list of approved Test providers by clicking HERE

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