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Student visa requirements for the UK

Applying for a UK student visa? Here’s help!

The UK Government provides an opportunity to all Indian students to study in the country but as a prerequisite, you’ll have to obtain a student visa first. 

The visa you need will depend on your age and the type of study you wish to pursue in the UK. Here’s an overview of the types of study visas and their application requirements: 

Type of student visa

Who it’s for

When to apply

Arrival in the UK

Tier 4 (General) student visa

Students aged 16 or over who have been offered a place in a course at a UK educational institution

Three months before the start of your course

Up to one week before if your course lasts six months or fewer. Up to one month before if your course lasts more than six months

Tier 4 (Child) student visa

Students aged between four and 17 who have been offered a place in a course at a UK educational institution with a valid Tier 4 sponsor, such as an independent fee-paying school

Three months before the start of your course

Up to one week before if your course lasts six months or fewer. Up to one month before if your course lasts more than six months

Short-term study visa

Students who have offered a place in a short-term course in the UK, such as an English language course or training course

Three months before your date of travel to the UK

Depends on your nominated travel dates

Tier 4 (General) student visa

Students who have been offered a place in a course at a UK educational institution with a valid Tier 4 sponsor

Three months before the start of your course

Up to one month before if your course lasts more than six months

*For detailed information, please visit the Gov.UK website

To be eligible for a Tier 4 student visa, you must:

  • Have an unconditional offer of a place on a course with a licensed Tier 4 sponsor
  • Be able to speak, read, write and understand English
  • Financial proofs i.e., exhibiting enough money to support yourself and pay for your course
  • For short term study visa, you must show the intention to leave the UK within 30 days of the end of your study (i.e., before the end of date of your immigration permission)

Documents required for Tier 4 student visa

When applying for your Tier 4 visa, you will generally need:

  • A current passport or other valid travel documentation
  • Evidence of funds to provide your living expenses for the duration of your course
  • Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) reference number and documents used to obtain CAS 
  • Passport-sized colour photographs
  • Tuberculosis screening (if required)
  • Assessment documentation
  • Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS) clearance certificate (if required)

Additional documents may also be needed if you are: 

  • Not a citizen of the country you are applying from
  • Under 18 years of age
  • Have family (dependents)

*Please note that these are the basic requirements, speak with your IDP counsellor for a detailed list of documents required for visa processing

If any of your supporting documents is not in English, you will need to have it translated. Each translated document must be dated, and include the translator's name and signature and confirmation that it is an accurate translation of the original document.

Applying for your visa online

You’ll have to apply for your student visa application online using the British Government’s official Gov.UK website. You can apply up to three months before your intended date of travel to the UK. Remember, your application date is the date when your application fee is paid.

How can we help with visa applications?

If you’re an IDP student with an offer letter from any of our partner institutions in the UK, we can advise you on how to go about the entire process. We’ll make sure you are fully informed on the latest visa requirements and conditions; also help you prepare the right documents for your submission. 

Our team of experts will direct you to the official websites and to authorised immigration representatives to ensure you have the latest application forms and guidance. To reduce the hassle, we can also help to certify, translate and courier your documents. 

Visa fee

Visa fee depends upon the visa that you will apply for:
 

Visa type

Visa fee

General student visa (Tier 4)

It costs £348 as the application fee for the visa from outside the UK. Also, you must pay £348 per person for any dependants.

Tier 4 (Child) student visa

It costs £348 as an application fee for a Tier 4 (Child) student visa from outside the UK. Also, You’ll have to pay the healthcare surcharge that will be part of your application.

Short-term study visa

It costs:

  • £97 for a 6-month visa

  • £186 for an 11-month visa

 *Please always check the official website for the latest fee, or check with your IDP counsellor

Mode of payment 

  • Online mode i.e., MasterCard or Visa card
  • Through demand draft to be submitted at the visa application centre or the selectead branches of Standard Chartered Bank
  • Through Cash payment at the visa application centre or the selected branches of Standard Chartered Bank

English language requirements

To gain your UK student visa, you’ll have to provide with an evidence of proficiency in the English language. This usually means passing a secure English language test to be able to prove your communication and correspondence skills.

IELTS for UKVI is an IELTS test approved for UK Visa and Immigration (UKVI) purposes. This applies to everyone coming from a non-English speaking country. While there is no change in the content, format or level of difficulty and scoring, IELTS for UKVI simply follows certain extra security protocols to ensure the authenticity of the test taker.

You may also have to appear for a personal interview at the UK embassy or consulate. 

It depends upon the type of visa that you will apply, as it will include the minimum requirement of IELTS exam:

Visa type

IELTS requirement

Tier 4 (General) student visa - below degree level and pre-sessional courses

IELTS for UKVI - 4.0 overall, and in each of the four skills

Tier 4 (General) student visa - degree level and above

IELTS/IELTS for UKVI – 5.5 overall, and in each of the four skills


Biometric residence permit

As part of your application, you must also obtain a biometric residence permit (BRP) from the UKVI. You will need to make an appointment with the UKVI to have your fingers and thumbs scanned and a digital photo taken of your face.

You can always contact us for a free counselling session and we can guide you on how to go about the entire visa application process. 

Schedule my free counselling session

Updated on July 2, 2020

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Ask IDP

does idp help for dependent visa along with my student visa for my wife?
by sujith
Yes we do
Is there any possiblities to take dependents after getting my student visa?
by ridhi
Yes it is possible
Does Australian student visa get rejected?
by amrendra
Generally at IDP we have a high visa success rate

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Anjali studying in the UK

From selecting a university, collecting and submitting my documents and to find me an accommodation, my counsellor helped me through it all.

Prathiba studying in the UK

IDP pushes you in every stage of your application process and makes sure you don't find an obstacle anywhere along your way. 

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