Nationals of a country in the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland do not need a visa or any other form of immigration permission to study at any of BIMM’s campuses in the UK. This also applies to qualifying non-EEA family members of EEA nationals.
EEA countries are: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom (UK).
You may be aware that the UK is in the process of seeking to leave the European Union (EU). EEA and Swiss nationals who are living in the UK before the date the UK leaves the EU will be able to remain in the UK. If they wish to stay on a long-term basis, they will need to make an application under the EU Settlement Scheme.
You can find detailed information on the EU Settlement Scheme and the time-frame for making an application here: https://www.gov.uk/settled-status-eu-citizens-families
Once the UK has left the EU, regardless of whether or not an agreement is reached, the UK Government has confirmed that EEA and Swiss nationals will still be able to come to the UK for study purposes on a visa-free basis for at least a further three years. You can find further information on this here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/no-deal-immigration-arrangements-for-eu-citizens-moving-to-the-uk-after-brexit
You can find further Brexit related information here: https://www.bimm.ac.uk/brexit-information/
All other international students must have a visa or other form of immigration permission (for example, Indefinite Leave to Remain) to study in the UK.
If you already have a visa or other form of immigration permission for the UK you may be able to study at BIMM without needing to apply for a Tier 4 student visa. You can find information on visas and immigration, including whether or not a specific type of visa allows study in the UK, here: https://www.gov.uk/browse/visas-immigration
Students who do not have a visa or other form of immigration permission that permits study will need to apply to UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) for a Tier 4 student visa.
Immigration status checks
All students, including UK and EEA nationals, will be required to demonstrate to BIMM that they have valid permission to study in the UK before they will be enrolled on a course of study.
Non-EEA nationals who have limited leave to remain in the UK (for example, they hold a PBS Dependant or other visa with a time-limit) will be required to demonstrate that they continue to have permission to study throughout the duration of their course.
Tier 4 student visa
BIMM is a registered UKVI sponsor and is therefore able to assign a Confirmation of Acceptance for Study (CAS). A CAS is a unique reference number that the sponsor must assign to the student before the student can apply for a Tier 4 student visa.
If you need a CAS, we will perform a pre-CAS assessment. In the first instance, we will request information regarding your:
- previous academic studies and other relevant background information*;
- English language ability*;
- immigration history where you have previously spent time in the UK.
*All prospective students should ensure that they will meet BIMM’s course entry requirements, including English language requirements specific to the course they wish to study.
Once we have reviewed this information, we may refer to you for further information depending on your specific circumstances.
In particular, if we have any concerns that UKVI may refuse your Tier 4 visa application, we may require further evidence from you prior to issuing a CAS to assess the likelihood of your application being approved. Once we have completed our assessment, if we are of the opinion that a Tier 4 student visa application is likely to be refused, we reserve the right to not issue a CAS.
Tier 4 student visa application process and conditions of stay
An overview of how to apply for a Tier 4 student visa, including information on processing times, the Immigration Health Surcharge and UKVI’s visa application fees can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/tier-4-general-visa
Detailed UKVI Policy Guidance for students with a Tier 4 student visa, including information on how to make an application and information on conditions of stay and work rights and restrictions can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-on-application-for-uk-visa-as-tier-4-student
The UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA) also produces information for international students and their website is here: https://www.ukcisa.org.uk/
BIMM as a Tier 4 sponsor
UKVI requires that all sponsors must comply with specific rules and obligations including:
- checking that all students have permission to study in the UK, keeping copies of evidence checked and updating this as needed (depending on the immigration status, we will keep a copy of the passport ID page, evidence of entry, visa/Biometric Residence Permit (BRP) and ATAS certificate if applicable);
- carrying out thorough assessments to ensure that students are ‘genuine’ students before assigning a CAS;
- ensuring that students with a Tier 4 visa comply with UKVI’s and their sponsor’s rules on engagement, attendance and absence;
- keeping up to date and historic contact details for Tier 4 students;
- reporting to UKVI:
- if the student with a Tier 4 visa fails to register/enrol as required;
- if the sponsor is concerned that a student is breaching the conditions of their Tier 4 visa; or
- if the student leaves the course early or there is a relevant change in circumstances of the student or the sponsor.
- withdrawing sponsorship if a student changes their immigration status or leaves or is withdrawn from the course.
BIMM complies fully with UKVI rules and obligations as a sponsor and the above is an overview of our duties as a sponsor. For further information, please contact the internal team.
All students studying with BIMM must comply with BIMM’s terms and conditions and policies which you can find here: https://www.bimm.ac.uk/essential-documents/
Contact BIMM’s International Team
Our international team are on hand to provide prospective and enrolled international students with information and advice on UK immigration and visa requirements.
For help, support or advice, please call or Skype us between 8am – 6pm GMT using the contact details below.
General: +44 1273 626 666
London: +44 (0) 208 749 3131
Skype: BIMM International