International Student Recruitment Guidelines

International student recruitment guidance notes for 2016 entry

Attracting more international students continues to be a strategic priority for the College; they enrich the student experience of home students, provide welcome diversity, bring international and intercultural perspectives into the curriculum and provide a different income stream.

It is essential that we offer a friendly and welcoming approach to applicants and ensure the customer journey is streamlined and efficient. We need to ensure quick turn round of applications or we risk losing students to other institutions who act quicker. We will also seek to maximise conversion of offer holders as well as generating good quality applications through agents and marketing activity.

The International Team will facilitate welcome and transition activities and manage all marketing, exchange and partnership activity. These notes are intended as a guide for staff.

Applications

International applications for all programmes can be submitted direct using the International Application Form. For undergraduate programmes applications can also be made through UCAS.

The International Application Form requires the applicant to disclose if they have ever been refused a UK visa.

Interviews/ Skype

In most cases it is not practical to carry out a face to face interview with a prospective international student therefore all prospective international students will be offered a Skype interview to allow applicants to present their portfolio or samples of work and discuss their application generally. For all HE Skype interviews a Director of Studies (DoS) will be part of the interview panel and for FE interviews, the Head of FE.

Interview availability will be agreed in advance with DoS’ and academic staff members.  

A screenshot and passport check will be taken of all interviews and kept on the student file and the interview summary sheet will require feedback on the applicants English language ability as evidenced in the interview. All sections of the interview summary sheet must be completed in full and returned to the International Office - the summary sheets form part of the students file which may be audited by UKVI.

Portfolios /samples of work

Most courses require the submission of a portfolio. It is often the case that international applicants from different academic backgrounds will provide work that differs from what we might expect from a UK student. It is important to take this into account both when assessing the portfolio and when interviewing in order to make the appropriate allowances.

All international applicants who meet our minimum academic and English language requirements will be progressed straight away to Skype interview.

Portfolios/samples of work will be viewed live at interview. Applicants will be given the option to submit in advance.

Following the interview, if the presentation or content needs to be improved and resubmitted, this should be allowed following feedback and advice from the programme area.

Following the interview, we will inform the candidate of the decision within 24 hours (see timings below).

Interview Process

For HE APPLICATIONS the following process will be followed:

  • Applications will be qualification checked and verified within 2 days, checked for completeness and progressed straight away by the IA to Skype interview.
  • If an application requires a fee status check, this will be carried out by the IO or HoI and verified by the HoI.
  • The Skype interview will take place with a DoS, Programme Leader and a member of the International Team present. The IT member will facilitate and complete the interview paperwork.
  • Our Skype details are: Username: leedscollegeofart.admissions.

For FE APPLICATIONS the following process will be followed:

  • Applications will be qualification checked and verified within 2 days, checked for completeness and applicants progressed straight away by the IA to Skype interview. The computer in the Vernon Street Boardroom has Skype.
  • If an application requires a fee status check, this will be carried out by the IO or HoI and verified by the HoI.
  • The Skype interview will take place with the Head of FE and the Course Leader. The IO will be present to facilitate, complete the interview paperwork and return to Admissions.
  • Our Skype details are: Username: leedscollegeofart.admissions.

Further information about the visa process and next steps will be sent to the applicant with their offer documents.

Pre CAS interview

A new process for the next cycle will be to introduce a short questionnaire and interview carried out by the International Office to help verify the applicant’s preparedness for a visa application. This aims to minimise rejections due to inaccurate information being presented at the visa interview.

Application cycle

We receive international applications throughout the full academic year as the UCAS January deadline does not apply. Some will apply late in the cycle having received results or had confirmation of funding etc.

Most will require a visa. Therefore we must ensure that any applicant we issue an offer to requiring a visa has sufficient time to complete their application.

International Student Application Process

Action

Timing

Enquiries

Received by IA, acknowledged immediately, dealt with within 2 working days.  

Application received, acknowledged by email and entered to Agresso by IA

Within 1 working day

Language / qualifications check. Application checked for completeness.

Validation by IA within 2 days after receipt of application and decision made to interview.

Response to applicant and invitation to Skype interview

By IA within 2 day of the qualifications check

Skype interview

See process above

Offer

Offer processed to applicant by the IO within 2 days and followed up with offer letter to encourage confirmation of decision within 1 week

Applicant to accept offer

Applicants have until UCAS deadlines, or if a direct applicant by May 31.

   

Follow up and liaison with applicant and agents keep warm correspondence /contract/ deposit etc.

Undertaken by IO.

Offer conditions to be met by August for most courses

Where results fall slightly short of the offer conditions the application will be reconsidered and decisions ratified by the Director of Studies, HE Enhancement and Research.

Pre CAS questionnaire and visa discussion with applicant prior to CAS (Confirmation of Acceptance for study) being generated by IO when all conditions met.

As soon as possible after offer accepted and all conditions met and by 26 August at latest

 

English Language

International students need to evidence they meet the minimum English language levels. This should be by a UKVI approved Secure English Language Test, this is checked by the IA at application stage. Our minimum requirements are as follows:

Foundation Diploma in Art and Design/ Extended Diploma

IELTS (International English Language Testing System) minimum overall score of 5.0, with no individual component below 4.5.

Undergraduate BA (Hons)

IELTS (International English Language Testing System) minimum overall score of 5.5, with no individual component below 5.5.

Masters

IELTS (International English Language Testing System) minimum overall score of 6.0 with no individual component below 5.5.

Fuller information, including acceptable alternatives to IELTS is available on the College website here http://www.leeds-art.ac.uk/home/international-students/entry-requirements/

Agents / Markets

Marketing visits and agent/partnership development activity supported by social media campaigns continues in: China, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Norway, USA and the UK.

Level 5 and 6 entry

Many universities offer level 6 ‘top up’ or ‘bridging’ courses. At Leeds College of Art direct entry to Level 5 (year 2) is possible for international students but not to level 6 as this is not permitted by the OU. Any application for direct entry to Level 5 needs to go through the recognised RPL process. http://portal.leeds-art.ac.uk/node/2971

Home Office UKVI

Barbara Mulroy is the first point of contact for UKVI.

These guidance notes are intended as a brief introduction to the international recruitment processes. Any staff member interested in finding out more or who has contacts or experience in the markets identified please contact Jenny Oxley.

Jenny Oxley, Head of Internationalisation

Email – jenny.oxley@leeds-art.ac.uk Ext 8060

International student recruitment guidance notes for 2016 entry