Tier 4 Student's Responsibilities

It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the correct visa to study at Aberystwyth University. If you do not have the correct visa, you will not be able to enrol at the University. By enrolling with Aberystwyth University, you are agreeing to adhere to the responsibilities of a Tier 4 Student as outlined below.

Before Registration

Confirmation of Acceptance of Studies (CAS)

A Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) is a unique reference number that your university sponsor* obtains from UK Visas and Immigration to enable you to apply for a Tier 4 student visa.

*Note this ‘sponsor’ refers to the sponsoring of your application for a student visa and is not the same as financial sponsorship.

Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS)

The Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS) is a scheme operated by the UK government and is a measure put in place to prevent the spread of knowledge and skills used in developing weapons of mass destruction and associated technology.

It is your responsibility to check if you need an ATAS certificate.

You must submit a copy to Aberystwyth University's Compliance Office at compliance@aber.ac.uk

Visa Refusal

You must inform the Compliance Office via email (compliance@aber.ac.uk) of any visa refusal notification you have received from the Home Office immediately. You must email all the pages of the refusal notice you have received from the Home Office as a PDF.

If you need more advice, please contact the International Student Advisor at immigrationadvice@aber.ac.uk

Arriving Late

If you are going to arrive late (2 – 3 weeks after the start date of your course), you must inform the Compliance Office (compliance@aber.ac.uk) as soon as possible. If the delay is caused by a genuine reason, the Home Office will be informed about the circumstances.

Note: If you fail to enrol on your course, the University has to inform the Home Office which will result in the withdrawal of sponsorship and having your visa curtailed. If you are not in the UK, you will not be able to travel to and enter the UK. If you are in the UK, you must leave immediately to your home country so as to avoid becoming an overstayer. Overstaying can have serious consequences for any future immigration applications.

UKCISA provides helpful guidance for Protecting your Tier 4 Status

Police Registration Certificate

Students of some nationalities studying in the UK for more than six months require a Police Registration Certificate. If you do require to be registered with the Police it will be printed on your visa (vignette or BRP). You must register within seven days of arriving in the UK.

Please refer to Government guidance on registering with the Police for full details.

Note: Failing to register with the Police is seen as an offence under Section 26(1) of the Immigration Act 1971, and the Police can consider prosecution. This can have serious implications for you and your ability to stay in the UK.

Note: You will need to inform the police within seven days if any of the information you’ve given them changes, including but not limited to:

Change in term address

Change of marital status

Any new passport or travel documents

Any new visas or extensions of stay granted by the Home Office

Tier 4 Students Document Check

If you are a new Non-EEA students you must attend a Pre-enrolment Check at the beginning of your Academic Year, before you are able to register with your department.

Where: Ground Floor, Visualisation Building, Penglais Campus. When: Monday 25 September 2017 - Friday 29 September 2017. What Time: 10:00am – 12:00noon or 2:00pm – 4:00pm

If you are starting outside of September, it is your responsibility to contact the Compliance Officer to arrange a document check in the Compliance Office before you are able to register.

During this document check, passports, visa, and other supporting documentation must be scanned and uploaded onto the University system. You must bring the following original documents:

Current passport and visas

Entry clearance letter (If applicable)

Original transcripts or degree certificates as mentioned on your CAS (If applicable)

Proof of English Language proficiency as mentioned on your CAS (If applicable)

ATAS (If applicable)

Returning Students

The Compliance Office must have a copy of your most up to date passport and visa in order for you to take part in the online registration at the start of the academic year.

If you have failed to do so, you will be unable to register and you will have to attend the Tier 4 Students Document Check.

 

After Registration

Attendance Monitoring

You are required to attend and engage with your course and you are subject to attendance monitoring. Your attendance is expected to be at 100% in all activities required as part of your degree, including but not limited to lectures, seminars, monthly supervisor meetings for PGR students, and all other contact points defined in the Tier 4 Student Engagement and Attendance Monitoring Handbook 2017-18.

It is compulsory for all Tier 4 Students to attend two centralised census sessions where you are required to:

Present your Aberystwyth University student card

Present your current passport and current visa

Present your Police Registration Certificate (if you haven’t already presented it)

Confirm your current contact details and ensure your Student Record is up to date

Census Sessions 2017/2018: 15th November 2017, 28th February 2018

Authorised Absence

You are required to follow the authorised absence procedure.

Authorised absence must be taken in line with the term dates and vacation periods

Study LevelVacation Period
Pre-sessional English Course None
International Foundation Programme (Pre-Masters) Christmas Vacation, Easter Vacation
Undergraduate Christmas Vacation, Easter Vacation, Summer Vacation
Postgraduate Taught Christmas Vacation, Easter Vacation
Postgraduate Research PGR students must be studying in Aberystwyth for 44 weeks per academic year. Vacation must be taken when appropriate in line with your research and any teaching events.

Updating Contact Details

You are required to keep Aberystwyth University and the Home Office up to date with your contact details

Updating the University

You are required to keep up to date contact details on your student record.

You must ensure your student record has a valid Home Address, Home telephone number and personal email address as well as your current Term Address and UK mobile/phone number.

Your Home Address is the address at which you are staying in your Home Country. Your Home Address cannot be a UK based address if you are a Tier 4 Student.

Your Term Address is the address at which you are staying while you study at Aberystwyth University, it must be within or close to Aberystwyth.

You must confirm your details during any census you attend throughout the Academic year.

Updating the Home Office

You must inform the Home Office of any change to your contact details during your studies.

Please note that the process for updating the Home Office is different for students outside of the UK, students in the UK and hold a valid BRP, and students who are in the UK but do not have a BRP.

You must inform the Home Office if you lose your BRP or your BRP is stolen. You may also need to replace your BRP.

Working while Studying

If you are working as part of your study scheme, a work placement, this is regarded as a Change of Circumstance, and you will need to adhere to those responsibilities.

Otherwise, you will need to check your visa (vignette or BRP) in order to see what are your rights to work in the UK. Employers have a legal obligation to check your right to work and you will need to provide evidence in the form of your visa. You will also need to provide your employer with information regarding term dates and vacation times in order for them to know whether you can work part-time (term time) or full-time (vacation periods). You can provide this information as one of the following:

A print out from Aberystwyth University's website showing term dates and vacation periods

A copy letter or email from the university confirming your term and vacation dates (please contact immigrationadvice@aber.ac.uk)

A letter from the university to your employer confirming your term and vacation dates (please contact immigrationadvice@aber.ac.uk)

Study LevelVacation Period
Pre-sessional English Course None
International Foundation Programme (Pre-Masters) Christmas Vacation, Easter Vacation
Undergraduate Christmas Vacation, Easter Vacation, Summer Vacation
Postgraduate Taught Christmas Vacation, Easter Vacation
Postgraduate Research PGR students must be studying in Aberystwyth for 44 weeks per academic year. Vacation must be taken when appropriate in line with your research and any teaching events.

Note: All students during term time may part-time work up to a maximum of 20 hours per week. During your vacation period, you may work full-time hours.

Note: Postgraduate Taught Students are not on vacation during the summer as you are working on your dissertation. You are allowed to work part-time hours and must be living in Aberystwyth during that time as you will be required to attend weekly census meetings.

Note: Postgraduate Research Students have no vacation periods and must be in Aberystwyth studying for 44 weeks per academic year. You are allowed to work part-time hours throughout the year, you should not assume you can work full-time during the summer or any other time when there are no teaching activities. Any vacation must be taken where appropriate and you must apply for authorised absence following the University procedure.

Change of Circumstances

1. Change of Study Location

You must inform the Compliance Officer (compliance@aber.ac.uk) Immediately if you are planning to change your study location as they must report this to the Home Office before the change happens.

1.1 Writing up from Home, PGT Students:

Postgraduate Taught students who wish to finish writing your Master’s Dissertation in your home country must inform your department and the Compliance Office (compliance@aber.ac.uk) and provide your booking confirmation. This is reported to the Home Office that you are no longer based in the UK but that you remain an AU student until you complete your studies. The university will withdraw your sponsorship and your visa will be curtailed.

Note: You will receive the standard letter of visa curtailment from the Home Office stating that Aberystwyth University has withdrawn sponsorship but that does not mean that you are not an AU student. You will remain an AU student until the end of your registration with us and our report to the Home Office will state that.

Note: You will not be able to return to the UK on your Tier 4 Visa once sponsorship has been withdrawn.

1.2 Writing up from Home  for PGR Students

Postgraduate Research students must agree with your supervisor if you're to write up from home or conduct any research abroad. You must inform the Compliance Office (compliance@aber.ac.uk) immediately and before your departure. You must update your contact details on your student record.

Writing Up: You may only choose to write up from home in your "Abeyance" period. This is reported to the Home Office that you are no longer based in the UK but that you remain an AU student until you complete your studies. The university will withdraw your sponsorship and your visa will be curtailed. If you need to re-enter the UK, eg for your PhD viva voce, you will need to apply for a short term study visa.

Note: You will receive the standard letter of visa curtailment from the Home Office stating that Aberystwyth University has withdrawn sponsorship but that does not mean that you are not an AU student. You will remain an AU student until the end of your registration with us and our report to the Home Office will state that.

Note: You will not be able to return to the UK on your Tier 4 Visa once sponsorship has been withdrawn.

1.3 Fieldwork, PGR Students

You must inform the Compliance Office (compliance@aber.ac.uk) immediately of your intention to undertake fieldwork. This does not impact your visa, but does need to be reported to the Home Office by the Compliance Office. You must maintain email contact with your supervisor to discuss work and provide evidence. These emails must be forwarded to the Compliance Office as part of the University's Attendance Monitoring Policy.

1.4 Exchange Programme or Study Abroad

Before you begin your programme, you must speak with the Compliance Office (compliance@aber.ac.uk) as they will need to discuss with you the implications of such a programme for your visa status. You are required to comply with the University's Attendance Monitoring Policy while you are away.

1.5 Split Site Study

You are required to inform your department and the Compliance Office (compliance@aber.ac.uk) before you depart for your external organisation as stated on your CAS. You will need to confirm the following:

Departure Date (provide flight booking confirmation)

Name of Organisation (where you are undertaking your external study)

Name of your external supervisor

Date of your return to Aberystwyth

These details will be reported to the Home Office but does not impact your student visa. While you are away, you are required to comply with the University's Attendance Monitoring Policy.

1.6 Work Placement

You may not be on a University approved work placement for more that 50% of your length of study. You are required to email details of your placement to the Compliance Office (compliance@aber.ac.uk) before your placement begins otherwise you might be putting your Tier 4 visa at risk. The university must pass these details on to the Home Office:

Name of the Organisation

Address of the Organisation

Reason why this is a necessary part of your studies

Start and End Date of your Placement

While you are away, you are required to comply with the University's Attendance Monitoring Policy.

2. Change of Course of Study

You must speak to the International Student Advisor (immigrationadvice@aber.ac.uk) before you make any formal decisions as changes could have an impact on your visa. You will need to inform the Compliance Office (compliance@aber.ac.uk) of your decision as the Home Office will need to be informed of the change.

3. Finishing a Course earlier than Expected

If you complete your course early, the University must inform the Home Office. Your Visa will no longer be valid and you will have to leave the UK or make a new visa application with the Home Office to change the purpose of your stay in the UK. 

4. Re-sitting Exams

In Attendance: If you have been recommended to re-sit a year of study "in attendance", you will be expected to re-register or repeat the whole year of study. You will need to extend your visa for another year. UKCISA has guidance on the Home Office time limits about how long you can spend studying in the UK.

Without Attendance: If you are required to be withdrawn from study due to failed exams, you cannot progress to the next level of study until you have re-taken the re-sit exams. You will need to leave the UK. This will be reported to the Home Office, your sponsorship will be withdrawn, and your visa will be curtailed. When you need to return to the University, you will need to apply for a new visa with a new CAS.

Change of Immigration Category

If you have changed to a different immigration category, you must update the Compliance Office (compliance@aber.ac.uk) by email.

You must present the original documentation as proof of the change in person in the International Office, for example your new visa.

If you are no longer subject to immigration control, you must inform the Compliance Office immediately and provide original proof of your new status.

Completing your Course

Following the completion of your course, you must leave the UK once your student visa expires., unless you have other valid means of staying.

 

Note:

For the most up to date, and more in depth account of responsibilities, please familiarise yourself with the Tier 4 Student Visa Responsibilities Handbook 2017-18

Please refer to UKCISA for useful tips on Protecting your Tier 4 Status