Will the UK Ban Student Visas

Study related visa issues have steadily declined over the years. The website https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/ released this alarming report of immigration statistics from Home Office administrative sources. The data gathered in this report covered the statistical changes in terms in the number of visa grants from April to June 2013.

This report focused on the non European Economic Area applicants who are subject to immigration control specially those who come to United Kingdom to study. It is noted previously, that in terms of visa grants citizens whose country is a member of the European Union has higher chances of being approved of British citizenship. This same trend is also apparent in study related visa grants.

Excluding student visitors, there was a 5% decrease in study related visa issues in the year ending 2013. Comparing the date with the previous 12 months, the number of applicants who were not granted with study related visa was at 9750. Included in this number is the increased population of Pakistanis and Indian applicants who were not granted with student visas. This report also showed a 23% decrease of student visa grants to non EU immigrants.

The London Metropolitan University was banned from sponsoring non EU students back in August 2012 due to failure to address issues identified by UK Border Agency. The ban was lifted in April 2013. Although the ban was lifted, the university is placed under probation for 12 months. This is to ensure that the university will be able to build a track record of compliance. Under the probation period, there will be a limit to the number of international students who can study at the university. This situation might have contributed to the decrease of student related visas to immigrants.

Although United Kingdom did not place a ban in issuing student visas on a general level, decline rate is steadily increasing. To improve the chances of being issued with a student visa, especially to those who are non European Union immigrants, requirements must be thoroughly reviewed by the applicant.

The website http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/visas-immigration/studying/ provides useful information as to the requirements needed to apply and be approved of a student visa. There are 6 categories of student immigrants classified by the United Kingdom. They are:

  • Tier 4 (General)

Adults who want to study in the United Kingdom post-16 education.

  • Student visitors

Applicants who want to study short courses and will not work during their stay.

  • Prospective students

Applicants who need to finalize arrangements for tier 4 course.

  • Tier 4 (child)

Aged between 4 to 17 who will study in the United Kingdom for a long period of time.

  • Child visitor

For children who want to study a short course and will not work during their stay.

  • Students under the old immigration rules

Students who are in staying in the United Kingdom under the Rules put into place before 03/31/2009.

Other helpful tools that immigrants who are interested in studying in the UK can read are the two brochures produced by the British Council. Those brochures are named “Creating Confidence-make sure that you time in the UK is safe and enjoyable” and “Safety First-making sure your visit to the UK is safe and enjoyable”.