Students: Highly Trusted Sponsor now required to apply for restricted course levels

From 6 April, check the Register to see if you can apply for courses at National Qualifications Framework (NQF) level 3 and courses below degree level

06 April 2010. From today, the new Highly Trusted Sponsor Register for sponsors under Tier 4 (General) of the points-based system goes live.

The Highly Trusted sponsor licence is a new category designed to reward education providers who sponsor under Tier 4 with a proven track record of recruiting genuine students who comply with the UK’s immigration rules.

Highly Trusted sponsors are expected to meet the published criteria in full throughout the period they hold their licence. In return they will be given a number of additional freedoms and benefits for the duration of their registration, and will be offered new services.

From today, you will need to have a sponsor who has Highly Trusted sponsor status in order to apply for the following restricted course levels below degree level:

• courses at National Qualifications Framework (NQF) level 3 (and equivalent);

• courses below degree level (excluding foundation degrees) which include work placements.

You will also need a Highly Trusted Sponsor if you wish to resit exams or repeat a module of a course more than once.

A list of Highly Trusted Sponsors is available on the UK Border Agency website.

For applications made on or after 6 April 2010, you will only be able to study restricted courses if you have a sponsor who has Highly Trusted sponsor status. 

All valid Confirmation of Acceptance of Studies that are assigned before 6 April will be considered under the rules in place on 5 April 2010, regardless of the rating of the sponsor.

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