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Foreign students feel unwelcome due to visa regs

 
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nomad soul



Joined: 31 Jan 2010
Posts: 11441
Location: The real world

PostPosted: Sun Dec 06, 2015 11:40 am    Post subject: Foreign students feel unwelcome due to visa regs Reply with quote

Overseas students ‘feel unwelcome’
By Andrea Perez and Matt Salusbury, EL Gazette | December 2015
Source: http://www.elgazette.com/

International students do not feel welcome in the UK as a result of recent changes to immigration laws brought in by the recent coalition government and the current Conservative administration, according to a recent survey of over 3,000 international students in the UK.

The increasingly tough student visa regime is likely to cut overseas student numbers by 15 per cent, BBC News recently estimated. Currently the main barrier seems to be tougher English language requirements for international students (with even tougher new requirements proposed). BBC News reports that UK universities have been lobbying the UK government to remove overseas student numbers from the government’s net migration figures, but new English language requirements currently being considered could present a complex barrier to entry.

According to the Guardian newspaper, government measures adversely affecting international students in the UK include cancelling the post-study work visa in 2012, students needing proof of more savings when they arrive, tougher rules on academic progression, rising minimum salary requirements for Tier 2 (work) visas and restrictions on work rights for spouses and dependants. Moreover, UK home secretary Theresa May stated in October that overseas students should ‘return home as soon as their visa expires’ unless they have a graduate-level job.

James Richardson, director of international development at Sheffield Hallam University, told the Independent newspaper that the perception created by the UK’s attitude to international students was, ‘Come here, pay your fee and clear off. You have no value to the wider economy.’ The Universities UK association estimates that overseas students make a £7 billion contribution to the UK economy.

In a 2014 survey of 3,135 international students (the majority of them from outside the EU) carried out by the National Union of Students, just over half of respondents said that the UK was either ‘not welcoming’ or ‘not at all welcoming towards international students’, a view held by international PhD students in particular.

The ‘not welcome’ (or worse) comment was made by 61.3 per cent of students from Turkey, 64.5 per cent of students from Japan, 62.8 per cent of Nigerian students, 62 per cent of Indians and 56.1 per cent of Pakistanis surveyed. A notable 19 per cent of all non-EU students canvassed would not recommend the UK as a place to study to a friend or relative, a view shared by 35 per cent of students from India and 37 per cent of students from Nigeria.

While numbers of Indian students in the UK continue to fall (down from 23,985 in 2010 to 12,280 in 2012), visas for Indian students for Australia in academic year 2013–14 increased 38 per cent on the previous academic year, according to the Times of India, with the temporary graduate visa for post-study work reportedly a major attraction.

(End of article)
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Stuka



Joined: 27 Aug 2012
Posts: 198

PostPosted: Sun Dec 06, 2015 3:04 pm    Post subject: Re: Foreign students feel unwelcome due to visa regs Reply with quote

nomad soul wrote:
James Richardson, director of international development at Sheffield Hallam University, told the Independent newspaper that the perception created by the UK’s attitude to international students was, ‘Come here, pay your fee and clear off.


The situation at British universities is a dire one. Because the government has cut their budget, universities are now forced to use agents to recruit any Tom, Dick or Harry just to get bums on seats. Of course a problem running in tandem with this is the growth of the for-profit sector and the increase in institutions that can grant degrees which has led to the massification of education and all the problems associated with it. Many international students that enter a British university to do a degree are not equipped with the language skills to navigate their courses, so the only way to pass them is to segregate them or dumb down courses. This is not right and the current government is correct in tightening up the regulations. As for the "come here, pay, and clear off" attitude, well, what's wrong with it? Students come here to study and not work and why should they hang around after and put additional pressure on the labour market by taking up local jobs? Other countries have regulations so why shouldn't we? The problem is that Britain has been a soft touch, and now that visa regulations and tougher English language requirements are being introduced, there is a backlash by all those that have a vested interest in mass education, notably fat cat vice chancellors and students with poor English language skills whose reasons to be here are highly dubious. So yes, international students are welcome here but they must demonstrate they have the money and language skills to pursue their chosen course of study and return home upon completing their course, unless they have a skill that cannot be found in the local workforce.
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gregory999



Joined: 29 Jul 2015
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Location: 999

PostPosted: Sun Dec 06, 2015 6:06 pm    Post subject: Re: Foreign students feel unwelcome due to visa regs Reply with quote

Stuka wrote:
nomad soul wrote:
James Richardson, director of international development at Sheffield Hallam University, told the Independent newspaper that the perception created by the UK’s attitude to international students was, ‘Come here, pay your fee and clear off.


As for the "come here, pay, and clear off" attitude, well, what's wrong with it? Students come here to study and not work and why should they hang around after and put additional pressure on the labour market by taking up local jobs?

I think the people who are putting pressure on the labour market, NHS, and social benefits, are not students from outside EU, they are Eastern European workers. Their number has already increased by millions from countries such as Romania and Bulgaria.
Students from outside EU, especially wit PhDs and Masters, take specialised academic jobs, in which it is very difficult to find local/EU candidates to fill them, and statistically speaking, they constitute a minority compared to UK academic market.
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Stuka



Joined: 27 Aug 2012
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 06, 2015 6:47 pm    Post subject: Re: Foreign students feel unwelcome due to visa regs Reply with quote

gregory999 wrote:
Students from outside EU, especially wit PhDs and Masters, take specialised academic jobs, in which it is very difficult to find local/EU candidates to fill them, and statistically speaking, they constitute a minority compared to UK academic market.


A noble thought, but many international students that graduate from our universities are taken on by employers who employ them simple because they work hard, keep their mouth shut and generally don't rock the boat. Many students from outside the EU are working for peanuts here but even so when compared to what they earn at home it is a king's ransom. I had a chat with a Vietnamese student of mine the other day who works in a restaurant as a chef and he told me that he works for minimum wage here but it's a lot better than Vietnam where he only gets about "0.30p" an hour. Many of these students are willing to pay more than UK domestic students because by studying at a British university they get a foot in the door or the British job market. It's not the fault of these students but the fat cats at the top who flog their courses to the the most vulnerable overseas students.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/educationnews/12029604/Rise-in-foreign-students-amid-accusations-universities-use-them-as-cash-cows.html
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Size9Sandals



Joined: 14 Aug 2013
Posts: 11
Location: Beautiful South London

PostPosted: Sun Dec 06, 2015 9:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I went with my son to the LSE open day a few months back and found that we were overwhelmed by Chinese students. I told my boy to not bother with the LSE as he would feel he were studying in an Asian ghetto, and would make very few English friends.

I have taught many MOD EDIT students and, while they have in general been very nice, they all seem very reluctant to learn to speak the language properly and take part in discussions. Ok, I know it's mostly a cultural distinction, but quite how my son would ever benefit by sharing discussions with them is a venture we are not prepared to undertake.

Isn't there some phrase about killing the goose that lays the golden eggs? The LSE seems to be very keen to strangle its own piece of academic fowl.

We'll be trying elsewhere - some place where English is not just the 'lingua franca' , but the first language of the vast majority of the students.
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Stuka



Joined: 27 Aug 2012
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 07, 2015 9:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Size9Sandals wrote:
. We'll be trying elsewhere - some place where English is not just the 'lingua franca' , but the first language of the vast majority of the students.


Good that you are looking around but the truth is that most universities are full of Chinese students because they are a cash cow. The LSE traditionally has had a great reputation, but with the Chinese taking over the place I'm sure it will slip down the league. It has already been involved in a couple of scandals involving money donations from tyrannical regimes like China and Libya.

http://www.thesundaytimes.co.uk/sto/news/uk_news/Education/article1042500.ece

My advice is to be very careful about which university you send your son to. It's not only the fact that universities are dumbing down courses to accommodate the Chinese, but also that fees have gone through the roof. Put simply the game is no longer worth the candle. Instead of wasting your money on a university education, why not set your son up in business?
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Stuka



Joined: 27 Aug 2012
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 07, 2015 10:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Size9Sandals wrote:
I went with my son to the LSE open day a few months back and found that we were overwhelmed by Chinese students.


University Challenge with Jeremy Paxman is on BBC2 this evening at 8pm. I wonder if the teams will be dominated by Chinese minds? They'll certainly have an advantage when it comes to answering questions about the Ming Dynasty, although not sure if they'll have the English skills to articulate their answer?
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Size9Sandals



Joined: 14 Aug 2013
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Location: Beautiful South London

PostPosted: Mon Dec 07, 2015 2:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm sure it's NOT!

BTW, and I know that this is totally off-topic, but am I right in saying that the remuneration for teaching General EFL has gone down the pan in recent years in the UK?

I haven't stepped into the murky waters of ENPR (English for No Particular Reason) for many years, but an advert from a recruiter fought its way past my spam filter and tried to tempt me with a job that was paying just £19 an hour!

Needless to say I returned fire with the comment that I was earning that in London in 1999. Have things really got so bad in general, or was this just a rogue employer?
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scot47



Joined: 10 Jan 2003
Posts: 15329

PostPosted: Mon Dec 07, 2015 5:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Things are worse than this. No one in their right mind is teaching EFL in the UK.
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slapntickle



Joined: 07 Sep 2010
Posts: 269

PostPosted: Thu Jan 21, 2016 9:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

scot47 wrote:
Things are worse than this. No one in their right mind is teaching EFL in the UK.


Yes, it's not only international students that feel unwelcome but also British TEFL teachers who can only find work over the summer if they are lucky. Good full-time tefl positions don't exist anymore in the UK. The parade's gone by . . .
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NilSatis82



Joined: 03 May 2009
Posts: 110

PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2016 3:10 pm    Post subject: Re: Foreign students feel unwelcome due to visa regs Reply with quote

Stuka wrote:
A noble thought, but many international students that graduate from our universities are taken on by employers who employ them simple because they work hard, keep their mouth shut and generally don't rock the boat. Many students from outside the EU are working for peanuts here but even so when compared to what they earn at home it is a king's ransom.

Non-EU Students can only work for a maximum of 20 hours on a student visa. As the article mentioned, the post-study work visa is no longer open. If students want to stay in the UK to work after their studies, they need to apply for a Tier 2 visa, for which they need to have specific skills and be earning a salary of £20,800 or more. Thanks to more bureaucratic meddling by Teresa May, in most cases students would now have to leave the UK first in order to apply under this visa, making it even harder for international students to work in the UK after completing their studies.

In fact, out of over 300,000 non-EU students in the UK, less than 6,000 stayed in the UK to work under the Tier 2 visa, so that's comfortably under 2%. These figures are from 2013-14, so before these new changes came into force.

http://www.ukcisa.org.uk/International-Students/The-next-stage/Working-after-your-studies/

In other words, what you've written is completely divorced from reality.

Also, complaining about low salaries in ELT in the UK and then supporting policies that discourage international students to come to the UK makes absolutely no sense whatsoever.
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Stuka



Joined: 27 Aug 2012
Posts: 198

PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2016 3:43 pm    Post subject: Re: Foreign students feel unwelcome due to visa regs Reply with quote

NilSatis82 wrote:
Thanks to more bureaucratic meddling by Teresa May . . .


"Meddling" here is simply a synonym for promoting standards. I for one am pleased to see the government finally putting their foot down and insisting that international students meet certain academic requirements. I'm pleased too that all the bogus colleges are being closed down and I'm also pleased too that the SAT test has been cancelled in China and Macau because of fears over cheating.

http://www.universityworldnews.com/article.php?story=20160122213642886
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NilSatis82



Joined: 03 May 2009
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2016 3:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's nothing to do with promoting standards. There is no practical reason to make people leave the country to apply for a Tier 2 visa. The only reason she did this is to try and put-off students wanting to stay in the UK via this route.
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Stuka



Joined: 27 Aug 2012
Posts: 198

PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2016 5:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

NilSatis82 wrote:
It's nothing to do with promoting standards. There is no practical reason to make people leave the country to apply for a Tier 2 visa. The only reason she did this is to try and put-off students wanting to stay in the UK via this route.


It has everything to do with standards. International students all know that the way to access the job market here in the UK is to get a student visa. Many of my students, especially Asian students, see study as getting in the way of their ability to work long hours and send all that cash home. And I might add that many of these same students should not be studying English in the UK, let alone at a university, because their English, to put it politely, SUCKS.
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