Information for students subject to immigration control in the UK

As a Tier 4 sponsor the University has a responsibility to only issue Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) as per the Tier 4 Guidance for Sponsors, and to students who we reasonably believe are genuine, and are able and intend to follow and successfully complete the course of study offered. Please see our other webpages for more detailed information about Tier 4 requirements.

The University also has a duty to 'comply with all aspects of the Immigration Rules and sponsor guidance, and support immigration control, including by taking steps to ensure that every student at their institution has permission to study in the UK throughout the whole period of their study' (Tier 4 of the Points Based System Guidance for Sponsors, document 2).

If you are a national of a non-EEA country (European Economic Area) you will be required to scan your passport and visa (if applicable) in person prior to your enrolment at the University of Plymouth, or at the University of Plymouth International College (UPIC).

You must complete scanning in order to complete online enrolment and to collect your University card.

For all new students there is also an ID check prior to your student card being issued to you.

If you are subject to immigration control in the UK, including Tier 4 visa holders, you are required to scan your documents in person at the start of every new academic year or stage of your programme, prior to enrolment.

If you hold immigration permission other than a Tier 4 visa we will contact you again during the academic year, and ask you to confirm that nothing has altered with regards to your immigration permission to live and study in the UK. Please respond promptly to these email messages.

It is your responsibility to inform the University promptly if you receive any communications from the Home Office regarding your existing immigration permissions, or any new leave or immigration permission you have applied for, including if you are an asylum seeker and are notified that your immigration bail conditions have been altered. 

We reserve the right to ask you to use our immigration advice service (International Student Advice, Ground Floor, Roland Levinsky Building) for Tier 4 visa applications where applicable, and to restrict the issuance of our CAS accordingly.

We also reserve the right to ask you to produce immigration documents for scanning in person, to update our records, at any point during your studies.

If your passport expires during the duration of your studies we will ask that you produce your current passport for scanning, and will keep on record correspondence relating to this if you will not be, or cannot, renew your passport at that time.

If your immigration permission expires and you have not, or cannot, submit an in time application to renew your visa, we will ask your faculty to interrupt you from your live programme, unless you have supplied us with evidence that you have already left the UK and will be continuing your programme from your home country.

It is very important that you check your University email account regularly as messages regarding your visa expiry, and other important communications from the University will be sent there primarily.

Data sharing and GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation):

Please note that as part of our duties as a Tier 4 sponsor the University is required to hold information regarding (and not limited to); your application, any agents or third parties that have assisted in your recruitment process, your enrolment, contact details, attendance and immigration status documents.

For more information please see the details provided at online enrolment and also in the student contract found here For more information about GDPR at the University please see

Please also note that as part of our sponsorship duties the University may share information with UKVI (Home Office), UKVI immigration enforcement officers, Border Force officers and the police as required. If you hold a Tier 4 visa we are required to provide UKVI with your contact details and other relevant information when carrying out certain types of reporting.

Switching Immigration Category into Tier 4

Students switching into the Tier 4 visa route (if their other immigration permission is expiring or will not cover the duration of their degree) are required to meet the full requirements for a CAS to be issued as per those for new students, if they have studied at the University or University of Plymouth International College for less than one full academic year when requesting the CAS.  

We will assess them based on these criteria rather than “progress to date” as for other existing students requiring a CAS. Students with immigration permission that permits study in the UK, other than a Tier 4 visa, are made aware of this when applying to the University.

Please see the University of Plymouth’s CAS policy