The UK Government has announced phase three of the UK Student Visa changes under the new points-based system.
18 September 2009
Voluntary trial for UK Student Visa sponsor applications
The UK Border Agency has announced it will move to the voluntary trialling period of the sponsorship management system for students on 5 October.
This trialling period is phase three of the government's implementation plan for Tier 4 UK Student Visa applicants under the new points-based system.
Phase three is the voluntary trialling period of the sponsorship management system for UK Student Visa sponsors, namely education providers.
This trial period allows education providers to continue using UK Student Visa letters while gradually adopting the use of an IT system called the sponsorship management system (SMS) to issue confirmations of acceptance for studies prior to these becoming mandatory in February 2010.
Between 5 October 2009 and February 2010, Education providers will be able to use SMS to issue confirmations of acceptance for studies, UK Student Visa letters, or a combination of both to would-be students applying from inside the United Kingdom.
Prospective students applying for a UK Student Visa from outside of the United Kingdom will still be required to continue to apply with a UK Student Visa letter until February 2010.