Tier 4: Changes

The UKBA amended the Immigration Rules to Tier 4 Students to include the following:

  • restrict work entitlements, by only allowing students sponsored by higher education institutions (HEIs) and publicly funded further education colleges to work part-time during term time and full-time during vacations;
  • restrict sponsorship of dependants to those of students sponsored by HEIs on postgraduate courses lasting 12 months or longer, and of government-sponsored students on courses lasting longer than 6 months;
  • require institutions to confirm that courses represent genuine academic progression from any previous courses studied by the student in the UK; and
  • create a streamlined application process for low-risk nationals sponsored by Highly Trusted sponsors.

The UKBA say:

'These changes are aimed at delivering a strong migration system which tackles immigration abuse while allowing genuine students to study at genuine colleges.'

Which sounds a little like making Tier 4 less attractive and a more difficult for students. Given the abuse of Tier 4 is relatively small it is perhaps aimed at reducing the inflow of migration instead. More when we have it.