Your studies and Tier 4

Your responsibilities (students)

By accepting our University's Tier 4 sponsorship (using our CAS), you’ll have responsibilities to us and to the Home Office.

As an Essex student you must adhere to all University Regulations which include Immigration Status requirements. It's important that as well as progressing academically, you attend everything and continue to meet all the rules, requirements and conditions of your leave. Make sure you understand what you must do to maintain your Tier 4 immigration status so you can complete your studies as planned.

To help you understand what your responsibilities are we have produced a leaflet You, your studies and Tier 4 (.pdf). You should receive a copy of this leaflet when you register for your course and an updated copy in each subsequent year of your course. Copies are available from your Student Services Hub.

The conditions of your visa

Your immigration permission will be subject to certain conditions. Make sure you know what these conditions mean.

  • If your visa states you can work you must check what term time means for you and what type of work you can do (paid or unpaid). You can't work more than the hours stated on your visa in any seven day period (a week) unless you are sure it's not term time for you.
  • If you must register with the Police, you have to do so within seven days of arrival in the UK or within seven days of collecting your BRP. You must update your certificate if any of the details held change or you extend your visa.
  • You can only study the course your CAS was for, with the Tier 4 sponsor that issued it.
  • If applicable, you must hold a valid ATAS certificate.
  • You must not claim social housing or welfare benefits.

If you don't comply with the conditions of your visa you may be considered to be in breach and there could be serious consequences for your UK immigration status and any future applications. If you've been given incorrect conditions you must inform the Home Office. Please read the Home Office Tier 4 Policy Guidance for full details.

Breaching the conditions of your visa

If you're concerned that you may have breached (broken) the conditions of your visa please contact SU Advice immediately.

Changes in course and/or personal circumstances

You must report certain changes in your circumstances to the Home Office. If you wish to change your course, you may have to make a new Tier 4 visa application.

If you have an ATAS certificate and your course content or research proposal changes and/or your course completion date (as per your CAS) is extended, you'll have to apply for a new certificate within 28 days.

As your Tier 4 sponsor, the University is also required to report certain changes in your circumstances to the Home Office.

You must leave the UK by the date your visa expires or, if you finish your course early, the date your visa is curtailed to expire.

Your attendance

As a student you're expected to attend all lectures, classes and seminars as well as all other scheduled events or meetings. Don’t forget to swipe in using your card on the Count-Me-In electronic readers. If you're going to be absent or are ill you must seek authorisation for this by completing the notified absence from teaching form found in your MyEssex portal. If you're a postgraduate research student, you should contact your allocated supervisor about any period of absence in the first instance. This includes seeking authorisation if you require to study away from campus for any period of time.

As a Tier 4 sponsor our University is required to monitor the attendance of all our Tier 4 students and report those who do not attend as required. Therefore, even if your absence has been authorised, you could be required to attend a meeting with the International Services Team and if your attendance is not satisfactory you may be withdrawn from your course.

We recommend you read the University’s detailed information about attendance, using your card and reporting an absence.

Essential reading

Immigration advice

If you'd like advice about your responsibilites as a Tier 4 student at Essex, please contact our International Services Team by completing our online enquiry form.

If you're planning on starting a new course with another Tier 4 sponsor, please contact the institution you intend to study at, or an alternative immigration advice service.