Attendance monitoring and engagement

This will only apply to you if you are a current full-time student holding a Tier 4 student visa only.

The University Attendance Monitoring and Engagement Policy sets out the requirements for attendance and engagement monitoring for students holding a Tier 4 visa.

As your sponsor under Tier 4, the University has various responsibilities, which include monitoring your engagement with your studies and reporting any changes to the Home Office.

It is very important that you notify the University of any changes that could affect your immigration status. Contact the Student Immigration Service if you need any advice about your visa.

Request an authorised absence

If you are a student who has read the guidance and you wish to request an authorised absence, please log into SAMIS.

Why attendance is monitored

Attendance monitoring procedures apply in order to:

  • provide appropriate advice and/or counselling to those students who are deemed not to be attending regularly.
  • ensure that the University complies with its responsibilities as a Tier 4 sponsor under Tier 4 of the Points Based Immigration System, and to enable the University to maintain this status.
  • ensure that the University provides accurate information to external government bodies in respect of funding.

How attendance is monitored

The University needs a mixture of types of contact (face-to-face and electronic) as well as ensuring that the contact points demonstrate your engagement with your studies. The points will be spread across the academic year as far as possible and cover the periods when you should be studying.

Support for disabilities or illness

If you are unable to fulfil the requirements identified due to disability or illness, an alternative will be arranged if appropriate, provided that you contact whoever has asked you to attend.

If you have any queries regarding this, please contact your Director of Studies.

When to request an authorised absence

The University has an authorised absence policy. If you are studying on campus and need to be absent for 14 days or longer, a period of ‘authorised absence’ may be authorised at the discretion of your department.

In considering whether to authorise absence, your ability to submit assessments, sit examinations and progress normally will need to be considered. Fees are not refunded for periods of authorised absence. 

Undergraduate students

You will not normally be allowed to be absent during designated teaching and examination weeks.

During vacation weeks, there is no requirement for you to be present on campus and therefore you do not need to request an authorised absence.

Postgraduate taught students

You will not normally be allowed to be absent during designated teaching and examination weeks unless the teaching and assessment pattern of the programme permits this.

During the summer vacation, you are expected to be studying for your dissertation, unless you are unable to do so because you have not progressed to the dissertation stage of your programme. If you will be completing your dissertation away from the University, any period of absence of 14 days or longer must be requested as an authorised absence (see below).

Postgraduate research students

You are expected to be studying throughout the year, including breaks between semesters and summer vacation, apart from days when the University is closed, and approved annual leave.

You must also request a period of authorised absence if you will be completing fieldwork away from the University. This is to ensure the University holds a central up-to-date record of where you are. Even if the period of fieldwork will exceed 60 days, a request must be made.

Maximum length of absences

The maximum continuous period of absence which can be granted without suspending studies is 60 days (with the exception of postgraduate research fieldwork).

If you intend to be absent for less than 14 days (such as in the case of illness) you do not need to request absence under this policy unless your period of absence becomes 14 days or longer, in which case you need to make a request via SAMIS on the web.

If you are unable to return to your studies by the expected date, you should make a request to extend your absence, as long as this doesn’t exceed 60 days.

Please note if you are a postgraduate research student completing fieldwork away from the University for more than 60 days, you must still request this as a period of authorised absence.

Consequences for poor attendance

If poor attendance is identified, you will be contacted by your department to determine if there is a problem and whether any support is required. You should respond immediately to any contact you receive from your department or any other member of staff of the University.

In particular circumstances and where appropriate, the University may decide that it’s necessary to follow the missing student protocol.

The consequences of not attending and engaging with your course are severe. University of Bath Regulation 3.1 states:

Students shall attend regularly. If a student's attendance is not satisfactory, or if a student is unable to attend for legal reasons, the Director of Academic Registry, authorised to act under power delegated by Senate, and following consultation with the student's Faculty or School, may determine that the student be precluded from continuing their studies and, where applicable, their registration be terminated. A student who is prevented for legal reasons from attending will, in the first instance, normally be suspended for a period not exceeding 12 months. Where registration is terminated, a person who ceases in this way to be a student of the University may make representations to the Vice-Chancellor, who may exercise statutory power to re-admit the student.

Refunding fees following an authorised absence

If you are granted a period of authorised absence, you will not receive a refund of tuition fees.

Your expected end date of studies will not be amended to reflect the period of time away from your studies.