Visas and immigration

Tier 4

The main route for students needing immigration permission to enter the UK is Tier 4 of the Points Based System for Immigration. To obtain a Tier 4 visa, students must be sponsored by the institution at which they will study.

Under Tier 4, both the student and the sponsor have various responsibilities, which are summarised below:

Sponsor Student
Ensure that the student and their course meet the Tier 4 requirements (please see our CAS issuing policy) Ensure that they have a valid visa at all times in order to study here and show evidence of their passport and visas as required
Check that the student has a valid visa and passport and to keep updated records of all their personal details Ensure that their passport, Visa and personal data (including contact address) is always up to date on university records
Monitor the student's attendance, progress and engagement with their programme of studies Attend and engage with their programme of study.  If a student needs to be absent for 14 days or longer they must apply for authorised absence
Inform the UKVI of any relevant changes to the student's circumstances or studies Tell the University of any changes to their studies and/personal circumstances
Take appropriate action should the student not meet the necessary requirements to study here (for example, if their visa application is refused) or is in breach of their immigration conditions Seek support if they are having problems with their academic studies or if they need advice about your visa or any other matters and ensure they comply with their immigration conditions, including work restrictions

It is essential that both the sponsor and the student comply with their responsibilities under Tier 4.

The University must ensure that it continues to comply in order to retain its Tier 4 sponsor licence which enables it to recruit and sponsor international students.

  • Students must also be aware of the severe consequences of not complying with their responsibilities under Tier 4.
  • They may need to withdraw from their course which will mean that they need to leave the UK.
  • They may need to leave the UK temporarily to obtain valid immigration permission.
  • Overstaying their visa or breaching their conditions could affect any future visa applications they may wish to make.

Information for staff

Staff can find further information about the University's sponsor requirements in our guidance on sponsor duties.

Information for students

Further information for students about their responsibilities can found through looking at our information on visa advice.

Useful links