Strong Opposition to New Student Visa Rules

Immigration minister Damian Green last week announced that new rules will soon come into force that will help to reduce abuse of the student visa route and ensure that only “the brightest and the best students” can stay and work in the UK. The most controversial of the new rules is undoubtedly the abolition of the post-study work visa from April this year. This visa allowed self-financing students from India and other non-EU countries to work in the UK for two years after their studies were completed.

The British Council and Universities UK have voiced their strong opposition to the upcoming changes, over concern that Britain will lose its appeal as a study destination for students from other countries. International students are estimated to contribute more than 14 billion pounds a year to the UK economy and recent reports indicate that there is already a decline of 30% in applications from the Indian sub-continent alone.

The British Council presented a detailed report titled ‘Impact of Visa Changes on Student Mobility and Outlook for the UK’ to the government, saying: “Students from certain countries who mainly study postgraduate courses in the UK – such as India, Pakistan and others — will be affected by the removal of the post-study work visa.”

The Council has called for an urgent review of the changes, particularly the closure of the popular post-study work visa from April this year.

Nicola Dandridge, chief executive of Universities UK has said about the matter: “We support the elimination of abuse in the visa system but are concerned that an unintended consequence of the changes to Tier 4 is that legitimate students will be put off, or prevented from studying in the UK”.

She added: “We are particularly concerned about limited provision for post-study employment in the new rules. We recognise that unrestricted access to the labour market is not possible in the current economic climate, but the new rules risk having a disproportionate impact on particular sectors, regions and professions, and reducing the global talent pool from which employers can recruit”.

According to the National Union of Students, over 75% of international students surveyed said that the option of the post-study work in the UK was “a very important factor in deciding to study in the UK”.

For up-to-date information and advice on student visas to the UK, visit or call 0808 141 1664.

  • Jonathan

    This is great news. They stay for two years then just dont leave, they breed like flies then expect the British tax payer to look after them. The biggest problem with Britain is that in the past it let just anyone in and they are now sitting with a real problem with all these unwanted people.

    • Alan


      Yes, i agree that a lot of so called ‘asylum’ seekers do breed like rabbits and use up tax payers funds. However the highly skilled workforce have to shell out more taxes than the average British citizen, effectively paying for themselves and a lot of people loitering the streets with beer cans in their hands, mostly on the dole, not giving a damn about their own country.
      Spot on about the mistakes that Britain (& France) made in the past but completely wrong about the peace loving skilled work force (most of them) who are ready to and do integrate into the society – not all of them just memorize the ‘Britishness’ tests – a lot of them really mean it.

  • Claudine

    @ Jonathan. It sounds like you are not familiar with visa rules. International students, even those on a post study work visa are not allowed to claim benefits so the taxpayer does not supoort them but rather income they pay (at least 14 billion pounds a year) is used to prop up those lazy brits and eu people who are sitting on benefits.

    • Tom

      @Claudine,Agree with you on all counts.Spot on! It’s a known fact that Universities if not fully but to a very good extent are dependant on funding and income (14 billion). To keep this going they should continue the Post work study as I dont see that as a problem .What good is a degree without experience .(ofcourse in the same line of study and a minimum amount of salary). They wouldnt come otherwise and secondly if its study they came for. They should not be allowed to switch or settledown in any form come what job they may land into.

  • Jason

    I agree with Claudine actually. Jonathan, try to base your rants on facts mate and not on the rubbish BNP manifesto.
    True that the student visa system is abused to the fullest by some idiots. But you’ve got to learn to differentiate between the honest students that come here for education/ work experience and the dishonest ones who come here to truly make use of our benefits and works system.
    That said, I have seen a number of European migrants and lazy Brits who take advantage of the benefits system on a day to day basis. International students on the other hand are NOT allowed to claim ANY benefits. And international students who attend proper universities (and some good colleges) CONTRIBUTE to our economy rather than take from it. For starters they pay upto 5 times the British student pays. Effectively paying for atleast 2-3 student’s education (for under grad courses atleast).
    The immigration change is a good start but needs to be smarter.

  • John

    Its the brits, thats us, that are too darn lazy clouts. We need to change this Thatcher mindset. It has buggered ours and the future generations lives. This is irrepairable. Every skilled job is done by a foreigner. Just go to any hospital, dentist, surgeons, accountants, 90 percent are foreign. This tells you how backwards our youth have become. Would much rather study a silly degree and bum through life doing shitty jobs earning basic living wages or live off the state.

  • Peter

    @Jonathan, It’s a shame how some people in modern-day British society can still be so mis-informed and not knowledgeable enough about the cause and effect of the various immigration impacts on International Students. For a start, International students are not eligible for any benefits at all. It was clearly stated in their visas – “No Recourse to Public Funding” or any benefits. The 2-year Post-Study visa is what these international students use to gain work experience to either return back to their own country fully endowed with knowledge or being prised away by recruiting British Company who can spot and identify brilliant prospects in these international students while the average Brits/EU persons, that were not challenged enough, sits on their backsides to claim what is ‘rightly’ belong to them – BENEFITS. A clear example is what is happening to University Tuition fees now. Four or five years ago, International students paid averagely £8,500 for a Masters degree course while home students (Brits) paid something in the region of £1,800 or unless. Mind you, all these on Student Loans while International students paid cash. The percentage comparison then was 60% (Brits) to 40% (International Students) and the Universities were operating and surviving without complaints. However, the Government started making changes to International Student visas situation, the 40% dropped to about 10-15% (even 0% in some universities), the universities started to struggle and complain about the ‘credit’ students (Brits – student loans) and guess what? The eventual increment in the tuition fees. Finally, my submission is that Minister should always watch the impacts of some of the counter-productive policies…it goes both ways. International students do have other options – USA, Germany, Finland, Sweden, Belgium, etc to study, do young Brits have any?

  • Brian

    I should start this by stating the fact that I am an international student that has just finished a masters degree from one of the Russell Group of Universities. I also completed my undergraduate studies in the UK and spent almost £50,000 all-together throughout the 3 and half years or so that I have been in the UK. However, I knew that coming to the UK would cost almost that much, and I have no complaints about this as I was readily prepared to get high quality teaching from a high quality education system. It is however rather disappointing that after spending such amounts of money (usually that most UK citizens find jaw dropping – and I don’t mean this in any rude way whatsoever) that we international students, most of whom come from developing countries are practically being “brushed away” if I may so speak from the UK educational system. I must agree that there are those of us who abuse the privileges associated with the PSW Visa, but one thing I can faithfully concur to is the fact that quite a good number of us international students do actually make use of the PSW Visa accordingly. Life in the UK is not a walk in the park. The cost of living (in the UK) is quite high as compared to where most of us come from to study in the UK, yet most of us are willing to sacrifice an arm and a leg just to benefit from a quality education system yet be shut out from the job market that has to be offered. It is quite sad to be honest, and what makes it sad is not the fact that we are being shut out, it is the fact that the UK could actually benefit from sincere individuals that know what they want in life. The PSW Visa should not be abolished, the way by which one qualifies to get it should be carefully re-considered. A good way of doing this for example is by having a system where a given university is able to monitor a students overall performance (for example class attendance, university grades, payment of fees within a stipulated time etc. etc.) and convey this information to the UKBA where if the student is unable to meet a given standard, then he/she may not be legible for the PSW Visa among other things. Such a system works to benefit the “honest” students and limits all of us from suffering just because of the mistakes of a chosen few.
    Last but not least, why April and not June/July when MOST of the last batch of graduations of the academic year 2011/2012 take place.


    The succeeder gov. cannot deny the promise of earlier Govt. because it is state assurance.the Govt. assured Psw when the international students came there.If the Mr Jonathan feels it is wrong let the Govt. repay the amount spent by international students along with compensation and claim from earlier govt.Instead telling one thing one time and making international students to spend lot here ,use their time and latter saying no is not state cheating internationally.

  • Jonathan

    Its not only the students but all the others who come in claiming to be refugees etc. then want their own laws etc. Load of rubbish. Quite frankly the reason the brits are so lazy is that they have been able to claim benefits and sit on their arses while the foreigners do all the work.. I think that if people paid into an unemployment fund then they should get benefits for a certain amount of time before losing them. Make them get off their arses and work or go hungry. If so many foreigners were not allowed in then there would be lots of jobs for the brits. Just look at who the majority of poor are. Not the brist but foreigners (dont care if they were born in britain, if their forefathers were from another country then they are foreigners)

    Its not just a british problem but world wide. Take aus for example, just because they got a degree they can get a PR visa but when they get to the country they cant get decent jobs so end up as cab drivers etc. Same in the US and in most western countries. Who are the poorest in the world and why. They had the same chance as the europeans to develop, invent things etc but not a chance. Dont say it was because the europeans oppressed them. Before the europeans arrived in africa, india and the rest of the 3rd world they had just as much chance to progress as the europeans did.

    And by the way I am from Africa and have spent time working all over the world so dont call me a white supremist

  • Himanshu Arora

    Hello guys
    If the PSW route will be demolished no one(foreigner) will be ready to come to uk for higher study because as we stated in above comments that these two years work period allowed international students to recover their expenses. So, i would suggest that dont abolish this route otherwise you know the results.

  • Himanshu Arora

    Hello guys
    If the PSW route will be demolished no one(foreigner) will be ready to come to uk for higher study because as we stated in above comments that these two years work period allowed international students to recover their expenses. So, i would suggest that dont abolish this route otherwise you are well known with the results.