Student visitor visas offer an alternative route to study in the UK for shorter courses.
If you are an adult student, and you want to undertake a short course of study in the UK, such as a beginner’s English Language course or a work-related training course, you should apply for a student visitor visa.
Student visitors are allowed to come to the UK for 6 months (or 11 months if they will be studying an English Language course). Upon entry to the UK, the immigration officer will stamp the duration of your permission to stay in your passport. You cannot extend your stay beyond this period or work while on a visitor visa.
Some claim it is too easy for students to obtain a visa to enter the UK. Labour’s Shadow Home Secretary Yvette Cooper wants tougher checks on short-term student visitor visas instead targeting legitimate overseas Tier 4 students.
Cooper believes the student visitor visa scheme is ‘open to abuse’ as it involves no minimum level of course for the student and does not need to lead to a qualification after studying in the UK:
“There are no academic requirements for getting the visa. Applicants don’t have to provide evidence of funds to support themselves nor proof of study at a college No one checks if they study. No one checks if they overstay. And these visas have gone up by 30,000 a year since the election … Yet because ’student visitors’ aren’t included in the net migration target, the Home Office doesn’t appear to care.”
What Cooper does not say is that the student visitor visa is harder to obtain as it is issued at the discretion of an Entry Clearance Officer (ECO), rather than on the basis of a points score, and that students are not allowed to work.
Highly Trusted Sponsor (HTS) institutions, such as Spinnaker College, offer courses for both Tier 4 international students and those who want to come to the UK for a short course on a student visitor visa, such as English language.
The number of Tier 4 student visas issue plummeted by 20% last year, a loss of well over 40,000 fee paying students billions in lost revenue for the recession hit UK economy. Visas issued for English Language schools fell by nearly 70%, while other higher education saw similar fall of 62%, but Spinnaker remains confident that students still want to come to the UK and benefit from quality education.
If you have been arrested or detained, need any immigration advice or are worried about the new immigration rules or need help with Sponsorship or Tier 1, 2, Tier 4, applying for university if your college has closed, Spouse Visa, ILR/Settlement, Citizenship, Dependant Visa or an appeal against a refusal, or if you have been waiting for a reply from the Home Office for longer than a year, please email:
Spinnaker College are holding OPEN DAYS at their London study centre on the 8th and 9th April. In country Tier 4 and EU students, such as Romanians and Bulgarians, as well as those with issue with their previous college are welcome.
Qualified legal advisers will be on hand for free immigration consultations to in-country students affected by the closure of their college.
To register for this FREE event, email: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0795 747 0180 to speak to a student adviser.
Unit 4 Lysander Mews
Tel: 0207 561 0684
Nearest station: Archway Underground Station