SECTION 2: International Student Information


2.1 Right to Study

2.1.1 If you are studying on a student visa or have limited leave to remain in the UK, then these sections are relevant to you. Please read them carefully as they are very important.

2.1.2 With effect from 5 October 2020, the Tier 4 (General) immigration category was changed to the Student Route and all international applicants who apply for a visa to study in the UK will be granted leave as a “Student” as opposed to Tier 4 (General). We refer to this category of immigration permission as “Student” leave but the provisions in these regulations also cover those with Tier 4 (General) leave.


2.2 Passport and Visa

2.2.1 You must demonstrate to us that you have the right to study in the UK. To do this, you need a valid passport and an appropriate visa which allows you to study. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have a valid passport as well as the correct visa.

2.2.2 When you arrive, you must provide us with a copy of your visa and passport. You should also ensure you provide updated versions of your visa/passport as appropriate throughout your course when requested by the International Office.

2.2.3 It is your responsibility to comply with the terms of your visa and with the regulations of the University at all times. It is a condition of your enrolment or re-registration on your course that you accept these obligations. If you do not comply with immigration controls or provide evidence of your right to study, we may suspend your studies and ultimately we may be required to withdraw you completely. This could result in your student visa being curtailed or cut short.

2.2.4 Under the Government’s immigration rules, we are obliged to report students who do not meet their visa conditions or who are suspected of being in breach of their visa status. We will not hesitate to suspend and subsequently report any students who are believed to have violated UK immigration regulations. Infringement of visa conditions is a serious offence and may lead to deportation. The Home Office may also impose additional sanctions.

2.2.5 We may decline to issue a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) or withdraw our sponsorship of your student visa if you do not comply with the requirements in this section. We may also do this if, in our opinion, your circumstances may compromise or pose a risk to our licence as a student sponsor. If we withdraw our visa sponsorship, we will also withdraw your registration as a student of the University immediately.  This also includes a CAS for extending your visa in the UK and may affect any subsequent graduate route visa.

2.2.6 You must leave the UK when your visa expires unless you have obtained further valid leave to remain.


2.3 Obligations on Student / Tier 4 (General) Visa Holders

2.3.1 The main obligations imposed by the Home Office on those studying in the UK on a Student visa are set out below. This list is not exhaustive or exclusive and may be updated by the Home Office with new conditions added from time to time. We may, therefore, amend our policy and practice at short notice to reflect revised Home Office rules and guidance.

2.3.2 If you wish to change course (or research topic), we must inform the Home Office. Therefore, you must therefore discuss this request with the International Office before doing anything else.

2.3.3 If you need ATAS clearance, you must obtain this before you apply for a visa or before you transfer into a course for which you require clearance. Guidance on the Academic technology approval scheme

2.3.4 You must tell us if:

  • You change address. You can do this using “My Details” online, by going to your School office or by advising staff in the International Office;
  • You obtain a new passport;
  • Any of your personal circumstances change (e.g. marriage, divorce, illness, or planned absence);

2.3.5 If you are a student on a visa, in addition to the attendance monitoring regulations and visa compliance procedure, the University is obliged to advise the UKVI of any absence exceeding ten contact points. Our visa compliance procedure is based on more regular attendance requirement and as such you may be withdrawn for less than ten missed expected contact points. Withdrawal from the University would lead to the cancellation of your student visa. 


2.4 Registration and Attendance

  • You must complete enrolment and re-registration at the scheduled times so that you are always a “current student” of the University.
  • You are required to attend two “check point” events each year, held in the spring and autumn terms. One of these events is an online check-in which we usually require you undertake on campus. The other check point is a face-to-face event: you must attend this and bring your passport and visa with you.
  • The International Office will inform you when these events are due to take place. We will use your University email address to do this, so please check it regularly.
  • If you fail to attend the check point event by the deadline stated in the email, we will undertake an investigation into your attendance and your account may be blocked.
  • Attendance on campus at the University is monitored and you must register your attendance at all scheduled sessions, seminars, tutorials, or appointments with an academic supervisor. These events must take place on campus or at a temporary location authorised in advance by the International Office and you will usually be expected to swipe your campus card.
  • Attendance online is also monitored but you do not need to take any action to register your engagement.
  • If you are on a taught Master’s course and working on your dissertation, you are also required to swipe your campus card regularly to demonstrate your continued engagement.
  • If you do not comply with course attendance requirements, or use your card to swipe fraudulently, we will immediately begin attendance monitoring disciplinary measures which could result in your withdrawal, a consequence which will include the cancellation of your student visa.
  • In addition to identity card swipes, attendance is monitored by spot checks conducted by your School. We will take immediate action, if there is any discrepancy between the swipe system and the spot check. You will be required to report to the International Office, within 5 working days. If you fail to report, we will issue a written warning and apply immediate sanctions. If you do not comply within a further 5 days, we will withdraw you from your course and withdraw sponsorship of your visa, both with immediate effect.
  • Any authorised absences must be approved in advance by visiting your School in person, unless we make an exception in response to extraordinary circumstances when you will be permitted to meet with us online. The School will then formally record the reason on your attendance record.


2.5 Work

  • If you have a part-time job, you must not work more than the permitted maximum number of hours under the Immigration Rules. You must never schedule paid work that conflicts with required attendance at the University. You must check with your School as to what hours you may work as further restrictions may be imposed by a PSRB. 
  • You must ensure that you comply with any working conditions or restrictions placed on you by your visa. It is your responsibility to check the conditions of your visa very carefully as a breach has serious consequences and we may be required to report a breach to the UKVI. 
  • You may not be entitled to claim benefits from public funds.
  • If your course offers a “sandwich” placement, please note that these are subject to Home Office conditions and we are required to monitor these arrangements carefully.

2.5.1 It is extremely important, for the benefit of all our international students, that we are able to comply with our duties as a sponsor and maintain our Sponsor status. As such we cannot accept any liability for any loss (financial or otherwise) experienced directly or indirectly by any applicant or student as a result of any actions or omissions on our part which we believe are necessary or desirable to comply with our statutory duties.


2.6 University Requirements

2.6.1 In addition to the obligations imposed by the Home Office and listed above, we also require that you adhere to the conditions set out below:

  • You are expected to remain in the UK at the address you have notified to the University until the official end of the academic year.
  • You must live within a reasonable commuting distance of the University so that you are able to attend all scheduled sessions, seminars, tutorials or activities with an academic supervisor and fully engage with your course on campus. 
  • Reasonable commuting distance will be assessed on a case-by-case basis and requirements may vary dependent on the academic requirements of the programme and the circumstances of the student. We may delay your enrolment at the University or curtail your visa if you are unable to demonstrate that you live within reasonable commuting distance. Travel distance and financial difficulties arising from excessive commuting distances will not be taken into account as mitigating circumstances if you breach your visa conditions or the Attendance Monitoring Regulation.
  • You are expected to fulfil the requirements of the Attendance Monitoring Regulation.
  • In response to external factors beyond our control, we may at our discretion permit variations to the above requirements in order to facilitate remote study


2.7 Students on a Standard Visitor or Short Term Study Visas

2.7.1 Students who come to the University under an exchange programme or to undertake pre-arranged assessment, study or research, and who are here for a period of less than six months will now be required to have a Standard Visitor visa to be able to study at the university

2.7.2 From 1 December 2020, the Short-term study visa route is for only those students who are coming to study an English language course in the UK having a duration between 6 and 11 months

2.7.3 If you who fall into these categories, you will not be permitted to undertake any work, even if it is unpaid. This includes unpaid internships, clinical or observation placements. You will not be permitted to “switch” visa categories while in the UK.

2.7.4 You are required to comply fully with the Attendance Monitoring Regulation found in section 4 of the Regulations for Taught Students


2.8 Other Visa Categories

2.8.1 If you are studying under any other different visa category (dependant, Skilled Worker, etc.), you are required to comply fully with the Attendance Monitoring Regulations.


2.9 The Graduate Route

2.9.1 This new graduate immigration route will allow international students to remain in the UK to either work or look for work for two years (three years for doctoral students) after they have completed their course.
2.9.2 Those with leave under the Graduate Route will not be sponsored by the University.

2.9.3 Full time study is not permitted for those with leave under the Graduate Route.


2.10 Visa Renewals

2.10.1 You are expected to take responsibility for ensuring that your visa is renewed in time and that you do not remain in the UK without valid permission to study.

2.10.2 The International Office provides a free student visa renewal service and will assist you with your student visa extension.

2.10.3 We cannot assist you in the visa renewal process and will not issue a CAS for visa renewals, , unless the following conditions are met:

  • You are not a debtor;
  • Your attendance record and engagement with your studies meets Home Office and the University’s requirements
  • You comply with all the requirements of this handbook, as well as meeting any specific course requirements as stipulated in the relevant course handbook
  • We are not aware of any other reason for potential visa refusal, e.g. overstaying, breach of working conditions, lack of funding or any breach of or failure to meet the relevant Government regulations
  • The school have authorised the continuation of your studies in the UK and not specified that you need to complete from your home country. 
  • If you are an applicant who is a sponsored student applying for the Doctorate Extension Scheme, you have obtained written consent from your sponsoring body.

2.10.5 Whilst we can provide some support to assist students through the visa renewal process, we may not always be able to assist you and we cannot take responsibility for the outcome of renewal applications.


2.11 Interruption of Studies Information for International Students

2.11.1 We will normally withdraw sponsorship of your visa if your studies are formally interrupted for any period of time, including, without limitation, interruptions arising from:

  • Medical or personal circumstances;
  • Programme transfers;
  • Periods of study or work or work experience/placement outside the University;
  • A requirement to complete assessments as an external candidate;
  • Proceedings brought under the University’s disciplinary or fitness to practise procedures;
  • Failure to pay outstanding debt;
  • Breach or suspected breach of immigration conditions;
  • Failure to demonstrate right to study.

2.11.2 If you interrupt your studies, you may be able to resume them at a later date.

2.11.3 An interruption to your studies will normally result in your visa being cancelled or cut short. You will therefore be required to return home until you are in a position to resume your studies. You will be required to apply for a new visa for your resumption of studies.