Uk study visa process & requirements are very different from USA, China, and even European countries.
Applying for and getting a UK visa could be a time-consuming and challenging task.
some students are often confused about visa documentation & how to apply for it, and others may worry about embassy interviews.
This updated UK study visa guide will not only explain everything, it will also prepare you step by step.
Many students prefer a UK study visa despite the high tuition fee at Uk universities. This is because of the quality of education at their universities.
The UK has a limitless number of institutions and students can find any course they want to enroll in.
UK has some of the oldest universities in the world like Cambridge and Oxford.
Students will find at least one university that is offering their area of expertise.
The UK has now started offering 2 years post-study work visas. This opportunity attracts talented and bright students who prefer the UK over otehr destinations like Germany and Canada.
At the end of the guide, students will also find FAQs & summary to the while guide.
Check Australia Study visa Guide & Canada study visa guide.
Read updated guides about German study visa & Hungary study visa.
Table of Content
1. Types of UK study visa for International Students
4. Office Responsible for UK visas to international student
5. Documents required for UK study visa
7. Frequently asked questions (FAQS)
Want to study in Uk for free? here is the ultimate guide for the Chevening & Commonwealth scholarship.
1. TYPE OF UK STUDY VISA:
1.1 Short-term Study Visa
Those students who want to study short courses can apply for short-term study visas. You can study for 6 months in the UK, or 11 months if interested in an English short-term course.
The costs for a short-term visa of 6 months are £93 and for 11 months are £179.
Students don’t have the permission to bring family members or do jobs on short-term visas.
1.2 Student Visa (Student route)
International students must apply for a student visa (under the Student Route) if they are starting full-time study courses.
Before 2020, Tier 4 (General student visa) was used for all international students,
But after October 2020, Tier 4 (General) was replaced by the student route
and Tier 4 (Child) by Child Student routes.
All the students including EEA, EU & Swiss nationals come under the category of Student or Child Student route.
Student visa grants for some specific courses.
If the course is existing, the educational provider will issue a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS).
Students will show CAS letters along with student visa applications.
This information is in the Immigration Rules and on the Home Office’s Student and Child Student guidance.
Check our ultimate USA study visa guide.
2. UK Student Visa Fee
Students should apply for a UK visa 3 months before the start of the course. They will receive a decision within 3 weeks of applying.
The cost of a UK student visa application is £335.
For more dependents, an extra £335 will be added.
If a student wants to extend or switch to a Student Visa, they need to pay £475 for the visa cost. Students will pay an extra visa fee for each extra family member too.
Students can apply for a visa outside of the UK and can do so online.
Read about the benefits of DAAD scholarships in Germany.
3. Uk student Visa process time
Students will get a response to their visa application within 3 weeks.
This is the case if they are applying outside of the UK.
Students will get a decision on their application within 8 weeks if they are applying inside of the UK.
It is important to note that students should arrive in the UK 1 month before the start of the course.
Students can do the job and extend their stay on Tier 4 (General student) Visa.
4. Office Responsible for UK study visas to international students
UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) is the office responsible for issuing UK study visas to international students.
SERC can sponsor students through student visa routes.
UKVI-approved SERC as their Higher Education Provider.
They help international students with visa status. These students can work part-time during their stay time.
Check step by step process of Italy study visa.
5. Documents required for UK study visa
6. English Language proficiency
8. Statement of Purpose for UK Study Visa
9. Family registration certificate (FRC)
11. Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS)
12. Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS)
13. Receipt of UK Study Visa Fee
14. Medical Test Results for Tuberculosis
16. Immigration Healthcare Surcharge (IHS) Fee
17. Written Document from financial sponsors
18. Police registration Certificate for UK Study Visa
19. Copy of the Hotel Reservation & Flight Booking
20. Marriage certificate & childbirth certificate
21. Copies of all the documents
22. Polio & Corona Vaccination Certificates
1) Valid passport for UK Student Visa
The passport of the applicant must contain one full blank page on both sides.
The passport must be valid at the time of visa application and on arrival to the UK.
If someone’s passport expires during the time of study in the UK, they should check it with issuing authority to renew/replace it.
2) Visa application form
Complete the application form for a study visa in the UK. Submit the application and visa fee as an international student.
Upload Immigration Health Surcharge (HIS) and other documents.
3) Passport-sized photograph
Attach two color photos of 35×45 mm size.
The photos must be on a white background & maximum of 6 months old.
Attach one photo to the application form for a UK study visa and the other to the documents.
4) Academic documents
Academic documents include all the degrees and certificates like
Bachelor’s certificate & transcript (for students applying for master’s)
Master’s certificate & transcript (for students applying for Ph.D.)
Metric & FSC certificate (10-12th Grade) (DMCs) and Transcript (for students applying for bachelor’s degree)
Receive an English proficiency certificate from the university. Sometimes, it is also important for a student visa in the UK.
Course Summary (To explain courses & some explanation about previous courses. Explain how your future studies related to your applying course)
Three Recommendation Letters from the university including Referee Details
All of the above documents should be attested by respective boards.
Also, attest them from issuing authority of home countries.
The respective university must attest university documents.
5) Translations of Documents for UK Study Visa
If the applicant has documents that are not in English, then it must be translated into English.
Translated Documents contain:
Confirmation from Translation Company/Translator
Name and Signature of the Translator
Translator’s Contact Details
Check our detailed guide for Denmark study visa.
6) English Language proficiency
Students need to prove their English skills by passing a secure English language test (SELT).
The student visa in the UK and Immigration Authority (UKVI) demands the least level of English language.
Students must prove that they can write, speak, and read English to some level.
This level is under the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) scale.
This is mandatory for granting a visa under Student Route (formerly called Tier 4 Visa).
Students can take different English language tests like PTE and TOEFL. The results must be equal to the B2 level.
Without getting that many scores, a UK study visa will become hard to get.
This is necessary for undergraduate and postgraduate levels.
The provider will test English language skills based on this result.
English language skill level (CEFR)
Below degree level
Degree level or Above Degree level
CV is compulsory at the time of university admission. It is optional for UK study visa interview, at the embassy.
A CV must contain your contact details and all the academic information.
8) Statement of Purpose
A statement of purpose is required for the UK study visa.
This document comprises information about a student:
Previous academic studies
Economic conditions of the student
All this is necessary to show that the student is moving to the UK to study.
9) Family registration certificate (FRC)
Family registration certificates issued by local authorities of the country. A family registration certificate is a record on the database of that country.
Most of the embassies demand a family registration certificate.
This document contains the names and details of parents & siblings.
Some scholarships also demand this certificate.
10) Financial Proof for UK study visa
It could be a bank statement or a letter from a financial sponsor. It is a proof that a student can cover the tuition fees, living costs, and accommodation for the first year or at least first 9 months.
A student visa in the UK demands that the applicant must have £1,015 per month as a living cost.
So technically International students must show a bank statement of 9000 £ for UK study visa if their courses are outside London.
If a student is living in London, then they will show a bank statement of 11,385 £. Because the living costs according to UK immigration calculation will be £1,265 per month (in London).
Remember, The bank statement must be at least one month old at the time of visa application, plus the student can provide evidence in case of a “student loan” or “scholarship” or any other “financial sponsorship”.
11) Academic Technology Approval Scheme for UK Study Visa
The Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS) is for researchers, who want to study certain postgraduate-level programs.
ATAS certificate could also be needed for certain undergraduate courses which may later integrate into a master’s.
Students from EU countries, EEA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and the United States are exempted from ATAS certificates.
Students of other nationalities must apply for an ATAS certificate.
12) Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS)
A CAS letter is an electronic document issued by a college or university. It is an unconditional offer letter.
Students need a CAS letter before applying for a UK study visa. The Home Office sees it on its database.
The CAS letter comprises all information about the course and sponsor.
It also includes financial proof.
The information present on the institution-generated CAS letter and application form should be the same.
UK visa applications may decline if the information on the CAS letter and application are not the same.
Students can apply and receive many CAS letters from different institutions. You will select one CAS letter from a specific institution at the time of application.
All other CAS letters become invalid and can’t be used for student applications.
After granting a visa, a student will study at an institute that provides a CAS letter.
13) Receipt of UK Study Visa Fee
The student will pay a non-refundable fee and fill out the form. Fee receipt of UK study visa application is necessary to show at the time of the interview.
The costs of a visa application are £335. For more dependents, an extra £335 will be added.
If applicants want to extend or switch to a Student Visa, they need to pay £475 for the visa cost.
Students will pay an extra visa fee for each extra family member.
14) Medical Test Results for Tuberculosis
Students need to do tuberculosis (TB) tests if they are planning for a UK study visa. And their stay is more than 6 months. The list of residents listed countries.
Students will provide a test chest x-ray for checking TB results. They can also ask to produce a sputum sample (for the lungs).
If there are no symptoms of TB in a student, they will provide a certificate to the student with a validity of 6 months.
Students should include this certificate in their UK study visa application as a student.
15) Biometrics Appointments for UK Study Visa
Visa application centers are open outside of the UK. Students can expect a delay in their appointments. If students feel a delay in the UK study visa applications, they should contact the education provider.
It is not possible to move to the UK on a Visitor Visa and then switch to Student immigration.
Check visa application centers.
Students from Europe, the Middle East, and Africa should visit the tlscontact centre.
Students from all other countries should visit VFS Global.
16) Immigration Healthcare Surcharge (IHS) Fee
For UK study visas applicants who need over 6 months’ stay need an Immigration Health Surcharge. Its cost depends on the application of visa duration.
The cost of immigration health surcharge is £470 per year. If the visa includes a year that is over six months, students will pay the full charges for this period. A 12-month master’s program cost charges of £710 for the immigration health surcharges.
You can check Immigration Health Surcharge Tool. This is available on the website of the Home Office.
This will clarify how much you will pay for the immigration health surcharge.
In the UK study visa application form, the student will calculate the needed amount to pay. Students will pay that amount before completing the application.
After completing this process, students will receive their IHS reference number by email. It will also include this number on the application form.
Students of the British Overseas Territory citizens living in the Falkland Islands are exempt from the immigration health surcharge costs.
Those students who are receiving funding from Commonwealth or Chevening, don’t need to pay for the IHS.
The student will fill in the IHS section of the application form and the IHS payment shows as £0.00.
17) Financial sponsors for UK Study Visa
If the university is the sponsor, then it is necessary to show financial details on the CAS letter.
If the government is the sponsor body, then they should send you a sponsor letter. Produce a printed copy of this letter and it will work as evidence of sponsorship.
Yet, the visa officer can still ask for an original letter. Ask the government sponsor to provide you with a paper copy of the sponsorship.
In case of no sponsorship, students must provide a bank statement.
If your sponsor is not covering all the expenses, then you have to provide proof that you will cover the rest of the money.
You can provide all these details in a documented form.
18) Police registration Certificate for UK Study Visa
Police registration is necessary for those people who have plans to move and stay on a study visa in the UK for over six months.
This role applies to certain immigration categories including student routes.
Currently, The Home Office ended the police registration page.
They will publish all the Information about this update on the UK government website.
Check our detailed guide about Norway student visas.
19) Copy of the Hotel Reservation & Flight Booking
The booking details confirm the date of arrival in a particular country.
The reservation of the hotel shows the student has all the hotel booking details.
20) Marriage certificate & childbirth certificate
The married applicants should provide their children’s birth certificates & marriage certificates.
They can make family registration from local authorities.
21) Copies of all the documents
Students should carry photocopies of their documents.
This becomes important for study visas in the UK for international students.
The embassy may ask for more documents.
The passport will remain with the embassy until the final decision.
22) Polio & Corona Vaccination Certificates
(Entirely depend on individual cases) The polio vaccine certificate could be still important in cases of some specific countries like Pakistan & Afghanistan.
There is no need to quarantine or do the PCR test anymore, but the vaccination record is important.
6. Interview Questions for UK Study Visa
These are common questions students face during their visa interviews.
Did you already search for opportunities in your home country?
Where is the university in the UK?
What is your course structure?
What is your previous educational qualification?
Why did you apply to this university?
What was the reason for the selection of this course?
What are your career goals after completing this course?
How will you manage the higher cost of this program in the UK?
Why are you pursuing your studies in the UK again after such a long break?
Are you planning to work in the UK on a post-study work visa?
7. FAQS (Frequently asked questions)
When can I enter Uk, after getting a student visa?
After issuing a visa, you can enter within 90 days into the UK.
Even some other countries like Australia have also increased the limit to 90 days, to provide more flexibility to international students.
How can I get benefits from Graduate Immigration and Post-Study Work rules in the UK?
The UK government has allowed study visas in the UK for international students to get the Graduate Immigration Route and PSW (Post Study Work) for 2 years.
What is the CAS document for a UK Study Visa?
CAS means “Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies”. The document is given by the educational provider.
Students will show CAS letters along with their student visa applications.
It comprises a 14-digit reference number
SLN (Sponsor License Number) of the university
Course starting and ending date
Title of the Course
English Language Test Score
Details of the paid tuition fee of the university
Is a Biometric Residence Permit Card necessary after Uk student visa?
YES. Students who are planning to stay for over 6 months must collect BRP cards within 10 days of arrival.
Biometric Residence Permit Card is required for international students. This is also for those applicants who are on dependent visas, like visitor visas, short-term study visas, and student visitor visas etc.
What is the validity of UK study visa?
It depends on the duration of the course. If a student is enrolled in a 4-years degree program, a visa grant is for five years. For other degree programs, a visa grant is for two years.
Can students extend their UK Study visas?
If you have got admission to a different course, then you can extend your UK visa as a student. You can extend Tier 4 (General) visa to a student visa. Technically, You should apply for a student visa three months before starting classes.
Can international students stay in the UK after completing their studies?
YES. International students who complete undergraduate studies can apply for a graduate UK study visa. The Graduate visa enables students to stay in the UK for two years.
The stay can be prolonged for two more years after graduation, while for three years after completing a Ph.D.
If a student can find a job, he/she can switch to another immigration category like a
Will I be able to work on the UK Student Visa?
YES. International students can work in the UK under specific conditions. The type of work a student can do depends on the studying course.
Some students also work during their break time or term break.
Some jobs offered for students on UK work visas have limited options.
Can I bring dependents on a UK Study Visa to the UK?
YES. You can bring dependent members of the family to the UK as you continue your studies.
But your family members must prove that they have enough money to support their stay in the UK.
It could be an Unmarried partner or spouse or Dependent children under the age of 18.
8. SUMMARY of the whole guide:
1. Take a visa appointment at the UK embassy & choose the student visa category.
2. Pay the application fee for a UK study Visa & provide bank statement details
3. Carefully Prepare the list of documents discussed above.
4. Do the visa interview & wait for the result.