Visa Conditions During your Studies
As a Tier 4 or Student visa holder, you have some responsibilities which come with the visa. This page will provide you with information about how to make sure you are keeping your Tier 4 or Student visa safe.
Attendance and Engagement
An important condition of your Tier 4/Student visa is that you maintain regular attendance on your programme of study and fulfil the academic requirements of your programme. This requirement is also laid out in the general student regulations. UK Visas & Immigration (UKVI) require the University to monitor attendance of all Tier 4/Student visa students. Poor attendance or failure to engage with your programme could lead to you being withdrawn from the University and your Tier 4/Student visa being curtailed.
We will also consider your engagement and performance on your course if you need to request an extension for your visa. If you have poor attendance and engagement, we may decide that we are not able to offer you continued visa sponsorship.
You will always receive emails notifying you if your attendance is not satisfactory and offer you the opportunity to provide information to the team for us to help you. If you receive one of these emails is it is important that you read the information in it carefully and follow the advice given in the email.
This will include the reasons why we are reaching out to you and give you advice as to what to do if you are experiencing any difficulties which are affecting your ability to attend regularly. If you do have any ongoing health or personal problems that are impacting your studies it is important that you let us know so that you can be offered appropriate support.
We may send you an email asking for you to attend an interview with a member of the team. If you receive this email, please do not ignore it. Usually, this will be because you have missed too many classes without explaining why or obtaining authorisation for your absences. We will want to give you a chance to talk to us about the reasons why you are not attending and for us to explain the impact this may have on your time in the UK.
Latest information on attendance monitoring for Tier 4/ Student visa holders
The International Support and Compliance Team has reviewed the current policy and made changes to how we will monitor engagement while students are learning remotely.
The Tier 4 and Student Visa Holders Interim Engagement Policy 2020/21 has been developed in accordance with UK Visas and Immigration Guidance for Sponsors (v.1, 05/10/20), COVID-19: Guidance for Tier 4 Sponsors and Migrants and for Short Term Students (05/10/20), the University Student Regulations and Engagement Policy.
We will continue to expect you to engage with your course online and will review the data generated by the Weblearn environment as to how often and with which sessions you engage with.
For the purposes of monitoring engagement for Tier 4/Student visa holders, you will be considered engaging where there is evidence that you have accessed the Weblearn environment for more than 3 hours in one week and, where possible, are attending on campus Learning Cafes offered every two weeks.
When we find that you are not engaging as expected, the International Support and Compliance team will reach out to you at the following points:
- If you have not engaged for one week without authorised absence, we will contact you to remind you of your responsibilities and expect a response.
- If you have not engaged for two weeks without authorised absence, we will provide a first formal warning
- If you have not engaged for three weeks without authorised absence, we will provide a final warning and explain that at four weeks (30 days) we will be obliged to withdraw sponsorship.
- If you reach four weeks of unauthorised absence, the International Compliance Officer will initiate the withdrawal of your visa sponsorship and we will contact you to inform you of this. You will be expected to leave the UK and return home.
For students who are completing Research degrees or the dissertation element of a Masters degree, you do not have regular face to face teaching. You will be expected to continue to communicate with your supervisor as usual and this contact will be recorded. You must ensure you are in contact with your supervisor at least once every four weeks and accessing materials remotely.
If you are completing a work placement module, you will also need to ensure you are engaging with the placement, whether this is in situ or remotely. Engagement will be monitored by completed timesheets signed by the employer or employer/ supervisor confirmation, depending on the placement type and whether it is taking place in situ or remotely.
If you are starting on a work placement module, you must ensure you contact the school Placement Officer and complete all aspects of the placement agreement before you start.
If you have any questions or need to discuss your attendance/engagement with the team, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Your Biometric Residence Permit (BRP)
A Biometric Residence Permit (BRP) is a standard credit card-sized plastic document that contains a biometric chip. The card is evidence of the holder’s immigration status in the UK and stores biometric details (name, date and place of birth) and biometric information (facial image and fingerprints). A BRP is only issued to people coming to the UK for more than six months. The BRP is your visa and it is extremely important that you keep it safe as you will need it every time you leave and re-enter the UK.
If you are on a course that is fewer than six months in length, your full visa will be on a visa vignette in your passport and you will not receive a BRP.
Sometimes there are errors on your BRP so you should make sure you check it carefully as soon as you collect it from the Post Office. Both you and the University are responsible to report any errors to UKVI quickly so you must let us know when you come across an issue. UKVI will need to correct the error and issue you a new card.
Type of error and how to correct them
If you do come across any mistakes, we strongly recommend you discuss this with us in the first instance. We will help you make the correct type of application and follow up with UKVI on your behalf.
Tier 4/ Student visa holders studying on a full time course at London Met will have the right to work a maximum of 20 hours during term time and full time during established vacation periods.
Your BRP should state that you have work rights in the UK. If it doesn't, this is an error that needs correcting.
If you are studying in the UK on a Tier 4/ Student visa for part time study, you do not have any work rights in the UK at all. If your BRP states this, this is an error and will need reporting to UKVI.
Visa end date: post-study period
Additional time is normally given after expected
course end date on the CAS
12 months or more
Between 6 and less than 12 months
Pre-sessional programmes less than 6 months
All other programmes less than 6 months
If your BRP states that your visa expires on a date earlier or later than you expected based on this table, then you may have an error that will need to be amended so you have the correct visa length.
If your name or date of birth is incorrect on the BRP, this is also important to correct as this is an official government document.
How to correct an error
|Where did you apply for your visa?||What is the problem with your BRP card?||Where do I fix the problem?||Cost|
|Outside the UK||All errors||Report online||Free|
|Inside the UK||Personal details errors (spelling of name or date of birth)||Report online||Free|
|Inside the UK||Length of visa or work permission errors||Administrative Review||80 GBP - Refundable if the Home Office agree there is an error|
Change of Student Status
If you would like to change the modules of your course, you should first discuss this with your course leader and School Office.
With regards to your Tier 4 or Student visa, if you will remain on the same credit load and therefore stay a full-time student, then it will not impact unless the changes mean that you are effectively changing your course, see below.
Change of Course
From UKVI perspective a changing course is a big change of circumstances, changing your course, in some circumstances may mean that you have to apply for a new Tier 4 visa from outside the UK. the Sponsor document 2 confirms:
- the sponsor is an HEP with a track record of compliance;
- the new course is at degree level or above;
- the new course is not at a lower level than the current course;
- The student will be able to complete their new course within their current period of permission; and
- for students who have previously been granted permission under the Student route (including Tier 4), the sponsor confirms that:
- the new course is related to the previous course for which the applicant was granted permission as a Student (including Tier 4), meaning that it is either connected to the previous course, part of the same subject group, or involves deeper specialisation, or
- the previous course and the new course in combination support the applicant’s genuine career aspirations.
If your course change does not meet the above requirements, then you will need to apply for a new visa from overseas.
International students sponsored under the Student visa must seek advice from the International Advice Service before requesting a course change as it may have implications on your current visa.
Sometimes it is necessary for students to seek mitigating circumstances for the submission of coursework or an assessment. London Met has clear guidelines around how you can go about requesting this.
Please bear in mind that depending on your situation, this may drastically impact on your visa and may mean that you will need to leave the UK while you wait to complete your assessment.
You should make an appointment to speak to an International Adviser before you submit your mitigation request so that you have all of the information you need to make the best decision for you.
Taking a Break
If your circumstances change and you decide that you will need to take a break from your studies, you should first review the information on the London Met web pages.
Leaving your course, even if only for one term, will mean that you are no longer an enrolled student and we will need to withdraw your visa sponsorship. This will mean that your Tier 4 or Student visa will be curtailed.
If you are thinking about taking a break from studies, please make an appointment to speak to an International Adviser so we can support you and provide you with the advice you will need.
Suspension or Withdrawal from Your Course
There may be circumstances where you are suspended or withdrawn from your course. This can be due to tuition fee debt, poor academic progress and engagement or administrative issues.
Suspension from your course may be temporary but could have a direct impact on your Tier 4 or Student visa. If you are suspended, you will receive communication from the University to inform you why this is and what you need to do to rectify the situation.
These changes of enrolment status will need to be reported to UK Visas and Immigration and could have a lasting impact on your immigration status. Please ensure you reach out to the Compliance Team to discuss the situation.
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