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UKCISA publishes latest student survey

'70 per cent of students are satisfied with the efficiency of the visa process': UKCISA Tier 4 student survey 2011 report on the student experience of the immigration system.

Passport visa

A survey of 5,000 overseas students on university and college courses found that despite the general perception that the UK no longer welcomes international students, some aspects of the visa system have improved and students seem satisfied with the application process.

Some of the survey findings are:

  • 70% of the surveyed students found the visa application process quick and efficient which is a rise from 59% in 2009. In terms of customer satisfaction 75 per cent were satisfied with customer service at visa application centres.
  • In terms of providing evidence of qualifications, 79% of the students found it quite straightforward and easy whereas providing evidence for funds was only satisfactory for 55%.
  • 74% of the students found immigration procedures at port of entry easy and straightforward.
  •  Students found colleges and universities a reliable source for information about Tier 4 visas.
  •  In terms of dissatisfaction, students found it difficult obtaining clear and correct information from UKBA.
  • Also, 50% found it confusing as a result from changes in the rules, such as abolition of the Post Study Work (PSW) and the rules on working while studying.
  •  In terms of changes in the English language requirements more than 10% of the students were affected resulting retake of exams for higher marks.

UKCISA is a membership body which includes every UK University and many other higher and further education colleges which are active internationally. Along with its members, UKCISA is calling for the Government to review its student visa process, initiate a positive publicity campaign, and reject any suggestion of further controls on students or visas.

UKCISA is also urging for an announcement of detailed procedures for the new, more limited, visa routes for working after study. This reform that seem to have affected the decision of prospective international students most to come and study in the UK.

International students contribute in excess of £10bn annually to the UK economy.

The reforms included the abolition of the Post-Study Work scheme – as the leading competitor Australia announced the introduction of theirs – a ban on most dependants, a ban on all part-time work for students at private colleges, a new Licensing system and new English language test requirements.


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Find all you need to know about studying in the UK by following the link.

If you want more information about visa applications, you can read our article ‘Visa Process FAQ’ or visit the UK Border Agency website.

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