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Visa & immigration information
The Student Information and Advisory Service provides visa and immigration information to new applicants and to current students studying at Oxford. This includes how to obtain a visa to study whether you apply from overseas or within the UK, correcting visa errors, information about your status and your legal obligations, immigration for family members, travel during your stay and staying on to work after your studies.
Latest visa information
Student immigration rule changes - 1 October 2013
For information on the forthcoming changes please see the UK Council for International Student Affairs webpage. These include:
- some family members being able to apply in the UK as dependants without having to return home
- very short term study will be allowed when entering the UK as a visitor (further clarification required)
- a new scheme to allow students to remain in the UK to undertake a short internship related to studies
- relaxed requirements in connection with supporting documents for applications made overseas (details still to be announced)
Delays in processing of ATAS Certificates
Notification has been received from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office of delays in the processing of ATAS certificates due to the high volume of applications received since the beginning of July 2013. Anticipated processing time is currently 5-6 weeks but if you have made a "fully completed" application and 30 working days (6 weeks) has passed, your application can be followed up by the University Visa and Immigration Advisers through a dedicated email address at the FCO. If you have received a request for additional information in connection with your application, "fully completed" is the date of the email acknowledging receipt from the ATAS team. Students who need this assistance should email email@example.com stating the date of submission of the completed application and the ATAS application ID number.
Pre-entry TB Testing for Students
The list of countries where a valid TB clearance certificate is required to accompany a student visa application is being expanded on a weekly basis. A certificate is only for student visas longer than 6 months and does not affect anyone coming to the UK on a 6 month student visitor visa.
For a complete list of countries currently requiring TB clearance and the addresses of the screening clinics in those countries, please see the UK Border Agency webpage.
Interviews for Tier 4 student visa applicants
The UK Government have introduced immigration interviews for those applying for a Tier 4 student visa and it is the intention to roll the process out to most countries by the end of 2013 (excluding those nationals/passport holders from "low risk" countries who apply in that country). See the UKCISA webpage for the current list.
Working after studies - new schemes for DPhil and MBA students
Tier 4 Doctorate Extension scheme NEW
Students completing a PhD (DPhil) in the UK are allowed to remain for one year to find work or set up a business. For further information see the After your Studies page.
There is also the opportunity for MBA graduates to apply under Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) scheme to set up in business.
Loans and loan letters
From 28 February 2013 a letter confirming financial support through a loan for the purposes of obtaining a Tier 4 student visa must state:
"the loan is provided by the national government, the state or regional government or a government sponsored student loan company or is part of an academic or educational loans scheme"
You will be unable to use a loan if is does not meet one of the above requirements. See the UKCISA website for more information
International Students contacted by Capita
Unlike the recent telephone scam (see below), the UKBA have employed Capita to contact students who no longer have immigration permission to remain in the UK. This is not a scam. However, some students are being contacted in error. Please read the information on the UKCISA site but if you face any difficulties please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Beware visa scam targeting International Students
Some students have received calls from people claiming to be from UKBA and telling students to pay money to correct an error with their visa or application. These calls are fraudulent. UKCISA have advice on what to do below. Please report any such calls to us: email@example.com.
The UK Council for International Student Affiars (UKCISA) have information on all of these announcements.