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International Students

Over half of our students are from outside the UK, from countries such as Australia, New Zealand, USA, Canada, Japan, South Korea, Poland, Slovenia, Hungary, Spain, Holland, Germany, Iceland and the West Indies, making a culturally diverse community. The fees are the same for national and international students, at West Dean. There are also bursary opportunities for all. Our Academic team is experienced in helping students with applying for visas, opening bank accounts, applying for funding and all other arrangements necessary when you are studying away from home. Please look at the UK Border Agency website for latest details www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/visas-immigration/studying/


If you are an EEA national and have been accepted on to a course of study, you are entitled to enter the UK freely and have the right of residence for the duration of your course. You may also wish to apply for a resident permit during your stay in the UK. To obtain a resident permit you should complete the application form EEA1 available from the UK Border Agency website.

To be able to travel to the United Kingdom as a general student (Tier 4) you must pass a points-based assessment and score 40 points before you travel.

30 POINTS for a Certificate of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) from the licensed sponsor i.e West Dean College. This is a virtual document, valid for six months, which is submitted to and held by the UKBA and will contain the information upon which our offer of a place to you was based. A CAS statement will be sent to you by the Academic Office with details of this information in order for you to comply fully with the requirements outlined on the visa application form. Our sponsor licence number is JRGX42YC6 and we hold Highly Trusted Status.
10 POINTS if you can show that you have enough finances available to cover your course fees and monthly living expenses for up to 12 months (known as maintenance).

You should contact your nearest British Embassy or High Commission and explain that you wish to apply for entry clearance on a general student visa (Tier 4).

Please note that you cannot apply for your visa until 3 months before the start date of your course. We strongly advise however that you begin to prepare your application and collate all the information and documentation well before that date. Please refer to the UKBA website www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk for the latest information, and to download the application form and student notes.
Another valuable source of important information for students is the UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA), their website is www.ukcisa.org.uk. UKCISA also have a student advice line – please see their website for details.

Please note that, due to recent modifications to the UK Border Agency regulations, we cannot accept ‘Visa Nationals’ (ie students from outside Europe) on to any of the programmes listed in this prospectus that are not validated by the University of Sussex. This is because, under the terms of our sponsorship licence, we cannot issue the Certificate of Acceptance to Study (CAS) required to obtain a Tier 4 Study Visa in respect of any programme unless it leads to an award that is validated by a nationally recognised awarding body.

NB Tier 4 visa rules are subject to change at any time.You must consult the UKBA website to acquaint yourself with all of these changes before submitting your application. www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/visas-immigration/studying/


Students whose first language is not English, and who are not a national of a majority English-speaking country, will be required to provide evidence of their English language ability to stated UKBA standards.

You do not have to provide evidence of your English ability if: a) you have completed an academic qualification at degree level or above, which was taught in a majority English-speaking country (including the UK and Ireland) b) you have successfully completed a course as a Tier 4 (Child) student, or as a student under the rules that were in force before Tier 4 and you were granted this permission whilst under the age of 18.

Majority English-speaking countries are defined by the UKBA as: Antigua and Barbuda; Australia; The Bahamas; Barbados; Belize; Canada; Dominica; Grenada; Guyana; Jamaica; New Zealand; St Kitts and Nevis; St Lucia; St Vincent and the Grenadines; Trinidad and Tobago; United States of America. UKBA will assess your nationality using your passport.

For all West Dean programmes we will assess your ability using a SELT (Secure English Language Test) and this must be a UKBA approved test.

Please enclose a copy of your in-date SELT certificate with your completed West Dean application forms. We are unable to issue a CAS if we do not have this.

A list of SELT is obtainable from: http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/workingintheuk/tier1/entrepreneur/documents/english-language/#header2

For programmes above degree level (NQF 6 level and above) your English language ability must be at level CEFR B2 or above.

For programmes below degree level (below NQF 6 level) your English language ability must be at level CEFR B1 or above.

You must include the relevant SELT certificate with your immigration application. If you do not, your immigration application will be refused.

The UKBA has also introduced an overall limit of five years for study in the UK by a visa national at degree level, and three years for a study at below degree level. This will be extended to six years for some Masters Degrees.

Information correct at time of going to press in September 2012.

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West Dean College and Gardens are situated in South East England, six miles north of the historic city of Chichester and 12 miles from the south coast.

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