Universities 'losing track' of English language skills

The withdrawal by UK immigration authorities of London Metropolitan University's right to enrol foreign students from outside the European Union sent shock waves across higher education. One reason given for the cancellation was that the English language ability of some students did not meet the minimum set under UK Border Agency visa rules, writes Max de Lotbinière for the Guardian.

Launching its legal challenge to the ban, London Met said: "The university has been conducting checks on its international students, specifically in relation to English language and educational ability, that not only meet UKBA's published requirements, but exceed those requirements in a number of areas."

But specialist English language support staff at UK universities admit that the data they currently have on the performance of foreign students studying in English as a second language is limited and inconclusive, with some claiming that institutions are failing to give adequate and targeted support.
Full report on the Guardian site