ATAS Refused PhD student /Birmingham University


Hello everyone

I recently granted a fully funded PhD course in Material department of Birmingham University.I applied for the ATAS but yesterday found it to be rejected. I'm really upset about it and it really changed my life plans!!can anyone help me in this case?
My nationality is Iranian. anyone know why do they reject students in ATAS?They don't give you any reason for it.however I have the right to appeal but wanted to make sure about how to do it.

Many Thanks


Hi Arash,

I'm really sorry to hear that you did not get the ATAS clearance that you applied for. Looking on the website it seems that you have to actually contact them in order to get the instructions for making an appeal against a refusal or if you want to find out the reason why the application was rejected. They do say that one reason for rejection could be that the info in the form did not exactly match the info provided by the university, or did not match the info on your visa etc. They don't say what the other reasons could be. It is probably worth getting in touch with them and asking them about this.

I wish you all the best.



Hi Arash,

I have a similar problem, I got my rejection yesterday. Can you please tell me what you did? I am very worried.

Thank you. Hamid


======= Date Modified 23 Sep 2011 17:02:35 =======
A quote taken directly from gov website

The Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS) was introduced on 1 November 2007 and is an essential part of the UK’s commitment to Counter Proliferation. Its aim is to help stop the spread of knowledge and skills that could be used in the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) and their means of delivery.

The ATAS is specifically designed to ensure that those applying for postgraduate study in certain sensitive subjects do not acquire knowledge that could potentially be used in WMD programmes.

Do Iranians have money to burn? I know they got oil as an alternative!!! Give up WMD program (if you have one) and send oil in gift packs to get a clearance?