In this article:
- Guidance for students holding a Student/Tier 4 visa
- Guidance for students studying remotely who have not yet applied for their visa
- How remote study will impact your eligibility under the proposed Graduate Visa route
Guidance for students holding a Student/Tier 4 visa
The UK Visas & Immigration (UKVI) COVID Concession guidance has confirmed that students on a valid Student/Tier 4 visa can continue their studies by distance learning, either in the UK or from overseas, without it impacting their visa.
This means that under the current guidance, students who have decided to continue their studies by remotely, either in the UK or from overseas will not have their Student/Tier 4 Visa withdrawn, and your visa will remain valid.
Important to know:
This concession will remain in place until the end of the 2020/2021 academic year. If you have any queries about the concession period, please contact the Advice & Guidance team.
You must ensure that you remain engaged with your studies and submit any assessments by the deadline date (in the same way as if you were studying on campus) to be eligible for this concession.
You should aim to apply for your visa around 3 months before you intend to return to on-campus study in the UK. The Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) you have been issued is only valid for 6 months, as such, it may expire before you need to apply for a visa to complete any on-campus study.
If your CAS has expired by the time you need to apply for your visa, you will need to request for a new CAS before starting your application.
Important to know:
If you have any further queries about your situation, please contact the Advice & Guidance team. Take a look at our article Accessing Student Support and Wellbeing for more information on how to contact the team during this period.
If your studies have been impacted by an unforeseen circumstance, you may be able to apply for mitigating circumstances. Take a look at our article What are mitigating circumstances for more information.
The new Graduate Visa is due to be implemented in Summer 2021. The government intention is that students who have successfully completed a programme of study which is wholly taught in the UK will be eligible to apply.
The UK Home Office Covid-19 Concessions make allowances for students impacted by Covid-19 to still be eligible under the graduate route in the following circumstances:
Students will normally be expected to undertake their studies in the UK to be eligible for the Graduate route. However, if students are required to either continue their current studies or commence a new course by distance or blended learning due to Covid-19, they will still be eligible to switch into the Graduate route on a concessionary basis if they spent some time studying outside the UK.
Students who are completing their course in summer 2021, including those who commenced a one-year Masters programme in September 2020, will benefit from this concession if they enter the UK on or before 6 April 2021 and complete the final semester of their studies in the UK.
Students who commence a one-year Masters programme in January 2021 will benefit from this concession if they enter the UK before 27 September 2021 and complete the final semester of their studies In the UK.
Students who are studying courses lasting longer than a year in length, which are not due to be completed in 2021, and who have studied all or part of the 2020/21 academic year via distance learning will not have any period of distance learning during the 2020/21 academic year held against them in relation to the Graduate route.
Such students will still need to have extant permission as a Student when the new route launches in 2021 and meet other eligibility criteria to be eligible for the route.
Important to know:
- If you have not yet made your decision and think you might wish to study on campus for Semester 2, please see our article on applying for a visa to study on campus for Semester 2.
- Please be advised that not all courses are eligible for remote study in Semester 2; please see our article Semester 2: Courses that are not eligible for remote study for more information.