Those wishing to enter the UK to study will need to achieve 40 points to apply for a student visa. The requirements are:
- Course confirmation: you must receive a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) from a university approved by UK Visa and Immigration (UKVI).All universities must have been given or applied for Highly Trusted Status (HTS) on the UKVI Tier 4 Sponsor list (30 points). ‘A rated’ colleges can also issue CAS numbers. The ‘A’ rating is a transitional rating for 12 months and all ‘A rated’ colleges must apply for HTS status within this 12 month transition period.
- Funding: you must provide evidence of funding to pay for both your course tuition fees and your monthly living costs (10 points).Tuition fees are on average £12,000 per year but can range from £8,000 to £36,000. You will also need to show that you have £1,265 for each month of your studies (up to a maximum of nine months) to pay for living costs if you study in inner London. Therefore, if you will be studying in inner London for a course lasting nine months or more, the maximum amount that you will need is £11,385.
- Visa Application: In order to submit your Tier 4 student visa application, please visit the UK Visa & Immigration website to complete the online application form. International students from all countries (apart from North Korea) have to submit the visa application online. You will also need to have your fingerprints and photograph (known as ‘biometric information’) taken at a visa application centre as part of your application.You can also apply if you wish to apply for a Short-term study visa if you wish to study for a short course of study in the UK, such as an English language course or a training course; or undergo a short period of research as part of a degree course if you are studying abroad. This visa does not allow you to study at a state school, work (including on a work placement or work experience) or carry out any business. This visa cannot be extended and you cannot bring family members (‘dependants’) with you, as they must apply separately.
Tier 4 Doctorate Extension Scheme(DES)
Tier 4 Doctorate Extension Scheme (DES) is designed to provide a bridge for PhD students to Tier 2 (and Tier 1). The DES visa allows full-time Tier 4 students who complete a PhD at a UK institution time to find work with a Tier 2 employer, set up as an entrepreneur, or to gain practical work experience in their field. Dependants are allowed, in accordance with current rules.
To apply under this scheme you will need to be sponsored by the University with a new Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) and to make a new Tier 4 visa application before you complete your PhD. The DES visa will be granted for a period of 12 months from your expected completion date stated on the new CAS.
If the study for your PhD required ATAS clearance and your course end date is postponed by more than 3 calendar months, you must apply for a new ATAS certificate but you do not need to submit it with your other visa application supporting documents. During the year you will need to keep in contact with the University as your sponsor for the scheme.