The United Kingdom through its home office has announced relaxed regulations for obtaining visas by non-EU Masters students.
The test program which kicked off on July 25 is extended only to four top English universities including the University of Oxford, University of Cambridge, University of Bath and Imperial College London.
According to Times Higher Education, THE, the pilot program is expected to ease visa application for students offered places at the four universities.
In line with the latest development, the participating universities will also be required to conduct eligibility tests which will also reduce required documents for the visa application process.
According to the new regulations released by the Home Office, students benefiting from the pilot program will be allowed to stay for as long as six months after the completion of their studies which allows more time for such students to secure a job through the Tier 2 skilled worker visa route.
The documents forwarded to the four universities stated that they “were selected due to their consistently low level of visa refusals. The pilot is intentionally narrow in scope in order to monitor the pilot outcomes against the stated objectives and to minimise the risk of unintended consequences before considering rolling it out more widely.”
The pilot program also aims to “test the benefits of a differentiated approach within Tier 4, whilst ensuring that any changes do not undermine the robust application of immigration requirements”.
The Home office noted that progress of the pilot program will be monitored closely adding that “the results of the ongoing monitoring and evaluation will inform any decision to roll the pilot out more widely”.