Who needs a student visa?
If any of the following apply to you, you will not need a visa to study with us:
- You are an Irish citizen
- You are an EU/EEA/Swiss citizen who holds a settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme
- You hold indefinite leave to remain
If you are not in one of the above categories, you will need a student visa to be able to study in the UK with us for more than 6 months.
The United Kingdom (UK) left the European Union (EU) as of 31 January 2020, and the transition period during which no changes took effect has now ended. The rules governing the new relationship between the EU and UK took effect on 1 January 2021. This means that as an EU/EEA/Swiss citizen you may now need a visa to study in the UK.
For internships or placements in the UK, you will need a visa unless your internship falls within your student visa permissions.
Use this link to check if you need to apply for a UK visa.
EU Settlement Scheme
The EU Settlement Scheme is available to EU/EEA and Swiss citizens who arrived and live in the UK (on or before 31 December 2020) to stay and continue to work, study and access healthcare. The deadline for applying is 30 June 2021. If your application is successful, you’ll get either settled or pre-settled status.
Further information on who can apply and how to proceed can be found here.
If you have been told that you can view your immigration status online, you can access this service to get a ‘share code’, update your personal details here: View and prove your immigration status - GOV.UK. You will need to provide us with your share code.
If you are a non-UK national and coming to study with us for more than 6 months you will need to apply for a student visa. You will also need to apply for a Student visa if your studies are less than 6 months and you wish to do an internship as part of your studies or look for part-time work while you are studying.
When should you apply?
After your registration with our university is completed, we will issue your Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies statement, which will include your CAS number. Please note that for your registration to be complete, you need to pay your tuition fee, as per the tuition fee payment schedule of your course.
Please do not apply for a visa before you receive your Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies statement from us, because it will be automatically rejected.
You should aim to apply for your student visa from outside the UK no more than 12 weeks before your course start date. Home Office guidance suggests that once you have completed your application you will usually get a decision in 3 weeks. You may be able to get your visa faster depending on which country you are in - check with your visa application centre.
What you will need for your student visa application
You will need some, or all, of the following documentation for your Student visa application depending on your situation:
IELTS SELT Consortium
IELTS for UKVI (Academic)
LanguageCert International ESOL SELT B2 (Listening, Reading, Writing, Speaking)
PTE Academic UKVI
PSI Services (UK) Ltd
Skills for English
Depending on the country where you live, or have been living in the last 6 months, Tuberculosis test (TB). Check if you need a TB.
If you are under 18: Parental consent – a letter from your parent or legal guardian giving consent to your application
Sponsor consent – a letter of consent confirming details of funding if required
There is an application fee of £363 to apply for a Student visa from outside the UK, it is possible to pay extra for an expedited service in most countries.
How do I get my CAS number?
Your CAS number will be included in your Confirmation of Studies statement, that we will send you by email after your registration is complete.
How long you can stay?
How long you can stay depends on the length of your course and what study you have already completed.
Standard Visitor Visa
You may come to the UK to study on a Standard Visitor Visa if:
You may not need to apply for the visa in advance of your arrival depending on your nationality, a list of visa nationals who need to apply for a Standard Visitor Visa before arrival can be found here.
When should you apply?
The earliest you can apply for your Standard Visitor visa from outside the UK is 3 months before you travel. Once you have completed your application you will usually get a decision in 3 weeks. You may be able to get your visa faster depending on which country you are in - check with your visa application centre.
What documents will you need for a Standard Visitor visa?
You must provide a valid passport, which must be valid for the whole of your stay
A supporting letter fromour university confirming your short course/resits
Be able to provide evidence (e.g.: bank statement/loan letter) that you are able to support yourself financially for the duration of your course or someone else supporting you
You have arranged accommodation
It is useful to have evidence you intend to leave at the end of your stay, i.e. a flight booking
Please see the full list of supporting documents here.
Things that you cannot do when you enter the UK as a Standard Visitor to study*:
Study on any other course or change your course while in the UK
Work or carry out any business, including:
Paid or unpaid employment,
Internship or work placement.
*please see UK Visas and Immigration for full guidance on the Standard visitor visa rules
If you are a non-visa national, you do not need to apply for a Standard Visitor Visa before you travel. You can use the UK/EEA immigration lanes and the automatic eGates entrance at the airport and Eurostar to enter the UK as a Visitor. You should be prepared to present your papers to the immigration officials on arrival at an UK airport and have the visa stamped into your passport which will be valid for 6 months.
Students from Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea and the United States of America will be able to use the eGates for fast automated arrival.
Students from EU/EEA and Switzerland, who are not eligible for EU Settlement Scheme can also use eGates entrance; you will be able to study on a Standard Visitor visa for programmes of less than six months e.g. exchanges. This visa does not allow you to work in the UK or switch into other visa types.
Please ensure that you carry the documents required for a Standard Visitor visa in your hand luggage in case you are asked to present it.
As you will not receive a stamp in your passport when using eGates, it is very important that you keep your boarding pass or your flight itinerary as evidence of when you entered the UK.
Healthcare whilst in the UK
When you apply for a Student visa, you will also have to pay the immigration healthcare surcharge (IHS), this is a mandatory part of your online application. The IHS costs are £470 per year for the length of leave granted; if leave includes part of a year which is less than 6-months, £235 will be payable for that year.
Paying the IHS allows visa holders to use the National Health Service (NHS) in the UK.
Check how much you’ll need to pay before you apply.
When applying for a Standard visitor visa, there is no IHS fee to pay which means you will need to pay to use non-emergency NHS services in the UK. You should obtain appropriate health care cover before your arrival.
See further information for EU/EEA/Swiss students in the UK before 31 December 2020 here.
Working whilst in the UK
You may be able to work while you are studying with a student visa; if you are eligible to work within your visa permissions you should be able to work:
If you are entering the UK as a visitor, you are not allowed to undertake work of any kind, including job shadowing, and an unpaid internship is still considered to be work.
Biometric Residence Permit (BRP)
If you apply for a visa to study in the UK using the Student visa route and you gave your biometric information at a visa application centre, if your immigration application is successful you will have received a vignette in your passport and need to collect your BRP after arrival in the UK.
A biometric residence permit (BRP) can be used to confirm your identity, your right to study or work in the UK and any rights to public services or benefits you are entitled to.
Your vignette sticker in your passport is normally valid for 90 days. This period will start 30 days before the course start date stated on your CAS, or 7 days before your intended travel date as provided by you, whichever is later. If you notice an error in your vignette, you should contact your visa application centre immediately to correct it before you come to the UK.
You cannot enter the UK before or after this period. If you attempt to, you will likely be refused entry to the UK. Follow Home Office guidelines on entering the UK.
You will then need to collect your BRP before the vignette sticker in your passport expires or within 10 days of arriving in the UK, whichever is later. Your decision letter will tell you where to collect your BRP.
Please ensure that you follow any Covid guidelines that may be in place. Do not collect your BRP if you are self-isolating because of coronavirus (COVID-19). If you are collecting your BRP from the Post Office, they will keep your BRP for 90 days. Collect it when you finish self-isolating.
EEA nationals who use the ‘UK Immigration: ID Check’ app to prove their identity when applying for their visa, will not get a vignette or a BRP: you will receive access to your digital immigration status. Guidance on your immigration status can be found on the UK Government website.
Full guidance notes on BRPs are available at the Home Office website.
Click here for more information on applying for all visa types to come to the UK: Applying for a visa to come to the UK - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
The UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA) have produced detailed guidance for international students, a selection of the most popular searches are below:
UKCISA - international student advice and guidance - Student work
Brexit: what does it mean for students and their family?
Brexit - EU Settlement Scheme
UKCISA - international student advice and guidance - Working after studies