Recent Changes in Study Visas: A Comprehensive Guide for Indian Students: Understanding the Updates and Implications for Education Abroad

As the number of Indian students pursuing higher education abroad continues to rise, many countries have implemented changes to their immigration policies, particularly in relation to study visas. These changes can have a significant impact on Indian students planning to study abroad, affecting various aspects such as English proficiency requirements, post-study work options, financial obligations, and more. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the recent changes in study visas of popular study destinations for Indian students, including Australia, the United Kingdom (UK), Canada, France, Ireland, Italy, New Zealand, and the United States of America (USA).


Australia: Raising the Bar for English Proficiency and Genuine Student Test


Australia has long been a preferred study destination for Indian students, with a significant number choosing to pursue their education there. However, the Australian government recently announced stricter rules for study visas and graduate/post-study work visas. One of the key changes is the requirement for higher scores in English proficiency tests such as IELTS, TOEFL, and Duolingo English test. The score required for a Temporary Graduate visa will increase from an IELTS score of 6.0 to 6.5, and for a student visa, it will increase from IELTS (or equivalent) 5.5 to 6.01.


Additionally, Australia will introduce a new Genuine Student test for all international students. This test will replace the existing Genuine Temporary Entrant requirement and acknowledge that post-study temporary migration and beyond pathways are available for eligible students1. Furthermore, the Australian government has increased the amount of savings international students need to show as evidence for a student visa, which currently stands at $24,5051.


United Kingdom: Stricter Immigration Policies and Post-Study Work Restrictions


The United Kingdom has been a popular study destination for Indian students for many years. However, recent changes in immigration policies have brought about significant implications. British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has announced measures to decrease immigration stats, resulting in several changes for international students1. One of these changes is the ban on overseas students bringing their families to the UK, except for those pursuing postgraduate research degrees1.

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Additionally, international students will no longer be allowed to switch from a student visa to work routes until they have completed their studies1. The two-year post-study work (PSW) visa, which was reinstated by the Boris Johnson government, is also under review1. Moreover, the visa application fee, including for study visas, has been increased by approximately £127, bringing the revised fee for a student visa to Rs 51,7871.


Canada: Enhanced Verification Process and Post-Graduation Work Permit Reforms


Canada has been a preferred study destination for Indian students due to its welcoming policies and quality education. However, recent changes aim to address issues related to fraudulent activities and better align the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program with the needs of the Canadian labor market and immigration goals1.


Starting from December 1, 2023, post-secondary designated learning institutions (DLI) will be required to confirm every applicant’s letter of acceptance directly with IRCC1. This enhanced verification process aims to protect prospective students from letter of acceptance fraud and ensure study permits are issued based only on genuine letters of acceptance1. Furthermore, the minimum cost of living financial requirement for students will be raised from the current 10,000 Canadian dollars to 20,635 Canadian dollars from January 1, 20241.


France: Extended Post-Study Work Visa for Master’s Degree Holders


France has gained popularity among Indian students, particularly those aiming to pursue careers in fields such as fashion, culinary arts, management, and business. The French government has recently extended the previously sponsored two-year post-study work visa to five years for students earning a Master’s degree in France1. This change allows students who have even spent a semester studying in France for their master’s or above to avail a five-year short-stay Schengen visa and explore job opportunities1.


Ireland: Extended Post-Study Work Visa Duration


Ireland, located near the UK, has emerged as an upcoming study abroad destination for Indian students. Recent changes in Ireland’s immigration policies have extended the post-study work visa duration for international students. Bachelor’s or master’s degree holders can now remain in the country for a period of two years, while PhD holders may stay for three years1. This extension provides Indian students with more time to explore career opportunities after completing their studies.


Italy: Extended Stay for Indian Students and Provisions for Professional Training

Study Abroad: Here's list of countries that brought recent changes in study  visas | Education News - The Indian Express

Italy has witnessed an increasing number of Indian students pursuing higher education in recent years. To accommodate the aspirations of Indian students, the Italian government has introduced changes that allow them to stay in the country for an additional 12 months after completing their degrees1. This extension provides students with more time to gain practical experience and explore job opportunities aligned with Italian skill and training standards1.


New Zealand: IELTS One Skill Retake Option


New Zealand has been a popular study destination for Indian students due to its high-quality education system and welcoming environment. Recent changes in New Zealand’s immigration policies include the acceptance of the IELTS One Skill Retake option1. This option allows test takers to retake any one of the four skills (listening, reading, writing, or speaking) if they did not achieve the desired score in their first attempt1. This change recognizes the IELTS as a valid and reliable means of assessing English language proficiency for international migration to New Zealand1.


United States of America: Stricter Rules for Student Visa Applicants


The United States has long been a top study abroad destination for Indian students, offering a diverse range of educational opportunities. Recent changes in the US immigration system aim to prevent fraud and abuse of the appointment system for student visa applicants1. As per the new guidelines, students applying for F, M, and J student visas are advised to use their own passport information when creating a profile and scheduling their visa appointment1. Failure to provide accurate passport information may result in canceled appointments and loss of the visa fee1.




As Indian students aspire to pursue higher education abroad, it is crucial to stay informed about the recent changes in study visas implemented by various countries. This comprehensive guide has highlighted the key changes in the study visa policies of popular study destinations such as Australia, the UK, Canada, France, Ireland, Italy, New Zealand, and the USA. By understanding these changes, Indian students can better prepare themselves for the application process, English proficiency requirements, post-study work options, financial obligations, and other considerations. It is essential to stay up to date with the latest information from official sources and consult with educational advisors to ensure a smooth and successful study abroad experience.





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