Changes to Tier 4 visa applications: Points Based Calculator to be discontinued from April
13 March 2016

From 6 April 2016 the Points Based Calculator will no longer be an eligible source to support immigration applications and will be removed from service entirely on 10 April 2016.

Currently, the calculator is used to assist applicants for UK visas using the Points Based System to determine whether they may be eligible to work or study in the UK. The Points Based System includes Tier 1, 2, 4 and 5 applications, as well as applications for indefinite leave to remain and naturalisation as a British Citizen.

The calculator also helps to assess whether an overseas academic qualification meets the academic or English language requirements for these visa categories.

What has changed?

Due to various changes in the immigration rules and application procedures in recent years, the Points Based Calculator has become significantly harder to maintain and is no longer considered a cost-effective tool for the Home Office. As such, it will shortly be discontinued altogether.

Applicants needing to demonstrate that their overseas qualifications meet the English language requirements on or after 6 April 2016 will need to obtain a new official statement from UK NARIC (National Recognition Information Centre). UK NARIC is an agency which specialises in providing advice on international vocational, academic and professional qualifications.

Any costs for an English language statement are not part of the government visa fee and will need to be paid directly to UK NARIC for the qualification equivalency services.

Whilst the above changes affect applicants wishing to use academic qualifications to fulfil the English language requirements, being a national of a majority English speaking country or having the appropriate Secure English Language Test (SELT) may suffice in certain cases.

Action points

  • On or after 6 April 2016, applicants for visas via the UK Points Based System needing to determine whether an overseas academic qualification meets the English language requirements must obtain a new official statement from UK NARIC.
  • Applicants requiring guidance on whether they are eligible should assess their circumstances against the criteria on the UKVI website.
  • Read the GOV.UK e-leaflets which are designed to provide you with some information about the Tier 4 visa routes for those wishing to study in the UK. It also provides information on the routes for short-term study.  

Source: and  

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