From 5th October the UK Government is introducing a simplified student visa route under new rules to study in the UK.
The ‘new streamlined process’ will allow all students to be treated the same, as ‘they make important contributions economically, academically, and financially’ to the UK economy.
It had been expected that these changes would come into force from January 2021. Students will commence their study visa applications with the new points-based immigration system.
However, the challenges brought about by the Covid-19 crisis led some students to defer their entry until next spring.
In response the Government brought forward the announcement so that more students could benefit from more time for processing of applications.
The Government hope that this change will encourage more candidates to apply sooner rather than later.
Non-UK students will require an appropriate visa under the UK’s new immigration policy having fully left the European Union.
It is hoped that by bringing these new rules into effect earlier, students ‘will be able to benefit from the new streamlined process whilst still giving sponsors time to adapt after their autumn intake.’
The Government will treat all overseas students equally, with International and European students included. All students coming to study in the UK using the same, simplified route when it opens for applications.
The Government recognizes the contribution made by overseas students. It will ‘continue to welcome talented and high potential students to our globally renowned universities, further education and English language colleges, and independent schools.
Bringing forward the new system allows more overseas students to benefit from employment opportunities.
From summer 2021 the Government will additionally launch the Graduate route. This is a new initiative that encourages students to stay on in the UK and work.
The arrangement will allow ‘those who have completed a degree at a UK Higher Education provider with a track record of compliance to stay in the UK for two years (three years for PhD graduates) and work at any skill level, and to switch into work routes if they find a suitable job.’
This is in addition to the existing fast-track visa scheme that the Government announced back in February. Overseas scientists, researchers and mathematicians have been targeted with the incentive of a rapid visa process.
The Global Talent route is part of an ambitious investment of up to £300 million to fund experimental and imaginative mathematical sciences research.