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International applicants! Your update on studying in London

The team here at Abbey Road Institute London are excited to be working towards accepting international students (those of you from outside the EU/EEA) to study on our Advanced Diploma in Music Production and Sound Engineering.

Before we can do this we must have a Tier 4 sponsor license. This license is awarded by the UK government’s Visas and Immigration office (UKVI). We are currently going through the application process. While this takes time to do, the good news is that the first stage of the process has been successful and the next stage is well underway. We, therefore, hope to be able to issue international applicants with CAS’s (confirmation of acceptance of studies) from May onwards.

Here are some of the most frequently asked questions we receive from international applicants. If we’ve missed something that you want ask about get in touch!

I am an international applicant, when can I study with you?
While not guaranteed, we anticipate being in a position to enrol international students onto our course starting in September 2019. We are accepting international applications now and once we have our Tier 4 license we will be able to provide you with the support and documents you need to apply for a Visa. Unfortunately, we are not able to accept international students onto our next course starting in March 2019.

Can I begin my application to study with you now?
Yes. You can apply for our diploma following the same application process as for EU/EEA students. You will, however, be required to provide some additional documents (see our entry requirements for more guidance). If you are accepted to study with us we will reserve your space for September 2019 and keep you updated with news of how our Tier 4 sponsor license application is progressing.

When will I know if you have received the Tier 4 license?
We expect to know the outcome of the application for the Tier 4 license at the end of April or early May. If for any reason the license is not in place for students wishing to study in September 2019 we will then work towards it being in place for our first course in 2020. Please note that the earliest you can apply for a Tier 4 visa is 3 months before your course start date and decisions are usually made within 3 weeks.

How will I know if you receive the Tier 4 license?
We will update our website and our social media pages as soon as we have information to share on the status of our license application. We’ll also share further information and guidance via our newsletters and of course, if you have started an application with us or are offered a place on our course we will contact you directly.

What happens if you don’t have your Tier 4 license in time for September 2019?
If the license isn’t ready for September 2019 we can defer your application to the first course starting in 2020. If that isn’t suitable for you we will refund your course fees in full.

When do I have to pay the course fee as an international student?
If you are offered a place on our course, you will be required to pay the balance of the course fees within two weeks from the date on your acceptance letter.

Can I pay in instalments?
No, to secure your place, you must pay the balance of the course fee two weeks from the date on your acceptance letter. Showing evidence that the course fee has been paid in full is an important factor in contributing to the success of your Tier 4 study visa application.  

Do I need to prove my knowledge of English?
You must prove your knowledge of the English language when you apply. This involves passing a secure English language test (SELT). You must achieve level B1 on the CEFR (Common Education Framework) and we recommend you use The International English Language Testing System (IELTS). IELTS measures the language proficiency of people who want to study or work where English is used as a language of communication. It uses a nine-band scale to clearly identify levels of proficiency, from non-user (band score 1) through to expert (band score 9). For help understanding the relationship between IELTS band scores and the six CEFR levels please visit the IELTS website.

We recommend that you take your English language test before you make your application. This will allow you submit the test results with your other application documents. Nationals from certain countries are exempt from having to take this test. Please visit the UKVI website for more information. Please note, there is a chance that even if you are an international native English speaker, you are still required to take the IELTS test.

IELTS results are valid for 2 years after the test date.  

Can I work while I am studying?
You are not able to work whilst you study with us, as we are a private education provider. Our diploma is very intensive and you’ll get the most out of the course if you’re able to prioritise your studies during your year with us.

Once I receive my Tier 4 visa how long can I stay in the UK for?
Our course is just under 1 year in duration (48 term weeks) which means you will be eligible to stay in the UK for the duration of the course plus two months after the end of the course.

Useful Links:
Introduction to the general student visa (Tier 4)

Guidance on applications for UK Tier 4 student visas

Ready to start your application for our Advanced Diploma in Music Production and Sound Engineering?
Check the information on the course page to make sure you meet the other requirements to study with us.