Are you aspiring to study in the UK? You must probably be aware of the recent announcements made by the government of the UK on student visa applications that will be effective from April 6, 2022. As part of the UK’s government ‘Build Back Better: Plan for Growth,’ the changes will impact existing immigration routes and provide better clarity to students planning to study in the UK.
So, let’s talk about them in detail:
New High Potential Individual Route:
The newest route will make it easier for overseas nationals demonstrating specialized skills and high potential to settle in the UK. The route is open for individuals who have graduated from leading non-UK universities, holding an awarded degree equivalent to a UK bachelor’s or postgraduate degree level. However, the education must have been undertaken with an institution listed on the Global Universities List. The students from institutions featuring in the top 50 of at least two of the following ranking systems stand a good chance:
- Times Higher Education World University Rankings;
- Quacquarelli Symonds World University Rankings;
- The Academic Ranking of World Universities.
The individual must also showcase their academic achievements commendable enough to come to the UK. Successful applicants will have a two-year work visa. For Ph.D. students, the validity will last for three years. Applicants can also switch to other employment routes, provided they fulfill the eligibility criteria.
The pathway will provide access to the pool of the best and most talented overseas workers to the UK-based employers, with a combination of the Graduate route, which permits international students to contribute to the British economy after completing their studies. The route ensures permanent residency in the UK.
- At least 18 years old;
- No job offers or sponsorship is required;
- English language ability is required (level B1 in speaking, listening, reading, writing);
- You can include your partner/parents/dependent children in the application;
- Have sufficient funds to cover your expenses;
- You cannot apply for the High Potential Individual route if you’ve previously been granted leave in the UK on either a Student Doctoral Extension Scheme or a Graduate or High Potential Individual.
The recent changes will simplify students to switch to the Graduate Route and apply for job positions that are highly in-demand and permanent. However, students must also prove that they have completed their degree and have made a lawful application to the Graduate Route.
Changes in financial requirements
Three minor changes have been introduced in the financial obligations that must be met. First, students may not keep a definite level of finances for 28 days if they are formally monetarily sponsored or depending on a student loan. If the finances are held in the applicant’s account on the date of outcome fall below the level of funds, then the difference must be used to pay for the outstanding course fee or any costs related to the studies.
From now, the government will not count overdraft facilities towards financial requirements. Additionally, income earned during an applicant’s stay in the UK must only be acquired through lawful means.
Academic Progression applies to students who can prove that the course they have studied in the UK is more progressive than their previous courses. For example- to demonstrate academic Progression, bachelor’s degree (NQF level 6) students can pursue a master’s degree (NQF level 7).
As per the new update, students who cannot complete their master’s or Ph.D. qualifications based on development can now be educationally progressing while retaining their lower qualifications in an integrated program.