The Academic Engagement Monitoring Policy for Student visa holders 2023/24 has now been published.
Students and staff are expected to familiarise themselves with the content of the policy and with its relevant implementation process.
The Student Immigration Service (SIS) has devised a comprehensive Frequently Asked Questions guide which students and staff may find useful. The guide will be updated regularly.
The academic engagement monitoring policy has been designed to ensure that any potential welfare issues, which may be indicated by poor attendance or poor engagement, are identified promptly so that appropriate support can be provided. It was devised in line with UKVI requirements.
Key points about the policy
Undergraduate and postgraduate taught students (including students in the first year of an Integrated PhD):
will be monitored through a combination of online and physical engagement points, evidencing both genuine online academic engagement and physical attendance
will be required to meet a minimum of one engagement point per week (which may be an online or a physical engagement point) and
will be required to meet a minimum of one physical engagement point in any two-week period.
The online engagement points which will be monitored for academic engagement purposes will include Moodle coursework submissions, Panopto lecture attendance (minimum of 50-minute viewing in any 24-hour period) and attendance at Zoom meetings and Teams meetings.
Physical attendance will be monitored through the use of the SafeZone app, which students will be required to check-in on at the start of their study sessions. Students having difficulty using the app can refer to our detailed instructions or bespoke online guide.
If a taught student fails to meet their weekly academic engagement monitoring requirements, Directors of Studies will be contacted after six weeks, when the latter may choose to initiate the Procedure to respond to poor attendance if they have any concerns about the student's attendance or engagement with their studies. At this stage, the student will be given a further two weeks to re-engage before their Moodle access is removed.
Failure to meet their requirements further will result in the student's visa sponsorship being withdrawn for lack of engagement with their course, which will lead to the student needing to leave the UK.
Doctoral students will continue to be monitored through in-person meetings with their supervisors and progress reports.
Visiting doctoral students on a Student visa will also be monitored. The Student Immigration Service will contact their supervisor quarterly to ask them to confirm they are actively engaging with their research and regularly attending on-campus research activities.
Students on placement, fieldwork or study abroad programme will continue to be subject to alternative electronic engagement points monitored by the Student Immigration Service.
It is important to note that, if a student stops engaging with their studies for more than 60 days after SIS contacts them for lack of engagement, we are required to withdraw sponsorship of their Student visa. Robust processes are in place at the University of Bath to ensure lack of engagement is identified early and students have time to re-engage before the University is required to withdraw sponsorship.
Alternative engagement points must be agreed between the department and the Student Immigration Service for specific groups of students if the standard online engagement points do not apply to them (e.g. if students will not be using Moodle, Zoom meetings, Teams meetings or Panopto). Please liaise with the Student Immigration Service as soon as possible, to ensure appropriate arrangements are in place before teaching starts.
The Student Immigration Service will monitor Student visa holders’ overall engagement, however the primary responsibility for monitoring student attendance and engagement lies with academic departments and all staff need to be mindful of this.
The University is required to meet strict reporting deadlines by the Home Office, and also needs an audit trail where a potential problem is identified. The cooperation of all staff is required to ensure that the University remains compliant with its duties as a Sponsor.
All students on a Student visa are required to meet the engagement monitoring requirements attached to their visa and need to familiarise themselves with the policy. The Student Immigration Service will contact students with more detail, however the responsibility to abide by the academic engagement monitoring policy ultimately lies with each student.