For a long time, the immigration rules have allowed people to come to the UK in order to study. The expectation is that, like visitors, those coming to study will stay in the UK only temporarily. Therefore, although it is possible for students to extend their stay to do further study, most students have to show that they intend to leave the UK at the end of their proposed studies.
What the rules say
People coming to the UK as students must show:
That they have been accepted for a course of study at a publicly funded institution of further or higher education
That they are able and intend to follow either a recognised full time degree course at a publicly funded institution of further or higher education
If under the age of 16 years, that they are enrolled at an independent fee paying school on a full time course of studies which meets the requirements of the Education Act 1944
That they intend to leave the UK at the end of their studies
That they do not intend to engage in business or take employment except part time or vacation work with the agreement of the Secretary of state
That they are able to meet the costs of the course and to maintain and accommodate themselves and any dependants without engaging in business, working or having recourse to public funds
Prospective students have to show that:
They have a genuine and realistic intention of undertaking within six months of entry, a course of entry which would meet the requirements of the rules
They intend to leave the UK on completion of their studies
They can maintain and accommodate themselves and any dependants without working and without recourse to public funds.