The UK is a hub of higher education with so many prestigious and world class universities and schools. Therefore it is a favoured destination for students and knowledge seekers world over.
Student Visa Route is for International students who wish to pursue an academic course in the UK including Graduate, Postgraduate and Doctorate levels.
Under the new Rules Tier 4 General leave has become Student Permission and Tier 4 Child leave has become Child student permission
The sponsor for this route is the educational institution where the student will study and the visa is issued for a particular course at the institution.
The Process is mostly governed by Immigration Rules Appendix Student
Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) issued by the Sponsor – Licensed University/Educational Institution
After you chose your Course and University, you should apply to the University. The University must be a licensed student sponsor. Once you are selected by the Institution ,you will get an unconditional offer and the Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS). The University will be the Sponsor for the student for immigration purpose.
The Rules provide that the Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies must contain the necessary information to confirm all the following requirements are met:
(a) the course requirement; and
(b) the approved qualification requirement; and
(c) the level of study requirement; and
(d) the place of study requirement.
The Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies must state the cost of any accommodation provided by the sponsor and fees (and any payment already made) so that the financial requirement can be assessed.
Application for Visa
Application for Visa must be submitted online within six months of receiving the Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS), from your sponsor university. You can apply from six months before the start date of your university course.
While applying fingerprints, photographs etc known as biometric information should be provided.
You may apply on the priority or super priority service, for a faster decision on your visa upon payment of additional fees.
You will also need to pay the healthcare surcharge. This will give you access to the UK’s National Health Service (NHS) upon application
You will need to provide a valid TB certificate with their application if you have been residing within a country listed in Appendix T of the Immigration Rules for the 6 months immediately preceding the application. This only applies to entry clearance applications.
Right level of English Eligibility
- You should speak, read, write and understand English.
- Proof of English Language skills like IELTS will be required for students from specified countries.
Proof of enough funds to pay the Course fee and living costs should be provided. If this money is in your bank account, it should be held there for 28 days consecutive days, and you will need to provide your most recent bank statement (not older than 1 month old). You can use your parents’ funds also. In such case your parent must confirm in writing that he/she is sponsoring you. If you have Scholarship, proof should be provided while applying for Visa.
Biometric Residence Permit (BRP)
Once you are through the process and reach the UK you will get a biometric residence permit (BRP). You can use your BRP to confirm your identity, your right to study in the UK, and your right to any public services or benefits.
Work While Studying
One great attraction of this route is that you can work part time while studying. The Rules provide that the applicant will be granted permission with the following employment conditions:
|Type of study||Employment conditions|
|Student following a full-time course of degree level or above study:|
• sponsored by a higher education provider with a track record of compliance; or
• sponsored by an overseas higher education institution to undertake a short-term study abroad programme in the UK
|20 hours per week during term-time (full- time employment permitted outside of term-time)|
|Student undertaking a full-time course below degree level study sponsored by a higher education provider with a track record of compliance||10 hours per week during term-time (full- time employment permitted outside of term-time)|
|All other study, including all part-time study||No employment permitted|
The Rules further provides that:
Students are permitted to undertake work related to a work placement, assessed as an integral part of the course.
A Student is not allowed to do any of the following:
(a) be self-employed or engage in business activity unless ST 26.8 applies; or
(b) work as a professional sportsperson (including as a sports coach); or
(c) work as an entertainer; or
(d) work in a position which would fill a permanent full-time vacancy.
If a Student has permission and makes an application for permission to stay under the Skilled Worker route, supported by a Certificate of Sponsorship assigned by a
licensed sponsor, the Student can start the employment for which the Certificate of Sponsorship was assigned, for up to 3 months prior to the course completion date, provided:
(a) the Student is studying a full-time course of study at degree level or above with a higher education provider with a track record of compliance; and
(b) the application as a Skilled Worker was made when the applicant had permission as a Student; and
(c) a decision has not been made on the Skilled Worker application, or where a decision has been made, any Administrative Review against a refusal has not been finally determined.
A Student may be employed as a postgraduate doctor or dentist if they are on a recognised Foundation Programme.
A Student may be self-employed, if:
(a) they have applied for permission on the Start-up route; and
(b) that application is supported by an endorsement from a Start-up route endorsing body which is a higher education provider with a track record of compliance; and
(c) the application was made when the applicant had permission as a Student; and
(d) a decision has not been made on the application, or where the application has been refused, any Administrative Review against a refusal has not been finally determined.
If you are one of the following:
a) a full-time student on a postgraduate level course that lasts 9 months or longer
b) a new government-sponsored student on a course that lasts longer than 6 months
c) a Doctorate Extension Scheme student
Your partner and children may also get Dependant Visa.
Any dependants who are over 16 years of age can work full time in the UK until the time dependant visa is valid. They can pursue any type of work except as a doctor or dentist.
Short Term Study Visa
For taking up a short term course which is not more than 6 months you can apply for a short term study visa. This Visa cannot be extended or switched to another visa. In this category the student cannot work during the studies.
Child Student Visa
Child student visa is for children between 4 to 17 years.
Prospects and Opportunities
- The UK education is renowned world over for its quality. It has great acceptance and value in the world job market.
- Though the Student Visa is not a direct route for settlement in the UK, the Student would have prospects for indefinite leave to remain (ILR) or settlement in the UK, through different routes, later, upon completion of the studies.
- The new Graduate route has also got open with effect from 1 July 2021 which will enable a student who completes his studies to work in the UK with permission to stay for 2 or 3 years based on your course.
Refusal based on Genuineness
Genuineness is vital in every aspect of life. The same principle applies to the Entry Clearance procedure for international students planning to come to the UK. The burden of proving genuineness lies on the applicant. Mistakes, omissions or inaccuracies could lead to refusal based on genuineness. The home office will also conduct a credibility interview to asses and confirm the genuinity of the applicant.
Here’s what any student applicant needs to be careful about while applying. Read: Refusal based on Genuineness for Entry Clearance Applications – Student Visa
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