Thursday, 24 March 2011

New Tier 4 UK Student Visa Rules Explained

Following the announcement of the changes to the Tier 4 UK Student Visas by the Home Secretary earlier this week I thought I would provide some more details into some of the points outlined.

English Language Level

Anyone coming to study in the UK at undergraduate level will need to achieve level B2 in each of the four language areas.

Anyone looking to study at lower level courses will need to achieve level B1

Anyone intending to study outside of Universities will need to supply a test certificate from an independent English test provider confirming that they have achieved this level. Universities will be allowed to vouch for a student English ability if the student is looking to study at degree level or above.

Border Agency Officers will now be able to refuse an applicant/migrant who can not speak English without an interpreter present.

Financial Evidence for Student Applications

The new policy in the maintenance/financial evidence requirements states that all applicants are to sign a new declaration that the funds used in the visa application to show the maintenance are genuinely available for use in coming to study in the UK.

The UKBA will refuse student visa applications where the bank statements used cannot be verified, A list of local banks in each country will be established and published shortly.

A quicker process for student applications will be introduced for foreign students looking to study at Highly Trusted Sponsors aiming at not needing to supply more documentation than the CAS and Passport.

Work Allowances for Foreign Students

International students at recognized institutions (Universities) will keep their permission to work 20 hours a week part time and to do placements where the ratio from work to study is 50/50.

Students studying at publicly funded FE colleges will still be able to work 10 hours a week in apart time capacity.

All other students will not have a right to work part time and work placements will need to be in the ratio of 66/33 study/work.

Tier 4 Student Dependents Rules

In order to bring a dependent into the UK the student will need to be on a postgraduate course (NQF Level 7 and higher) at a UK University which is more than 12 months in duration or a Govt Sponsored Student.

All dependents should be able to work in the UK.

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