Here is a step-by-step approach to applying for a Tier 4 student visa to the UK.
Firmly accept your unconditional offer and pay any tuition fee deposits required by the University.
Review the information in your CAS checking document, which you will receive by email no more than four months before your course start date.
What’s a CAS? A Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) is an electronic document issued to students who need to make a Tier 4 (General) application. Your CAS number, which is required on your visa application, will be found on the CAS statement email you receive from the University.
When the CAS has been prepared, you will receive an email asking you to check the details of your CAS. Check all the information included is correct.
If the CAS is correct, follow the instructions to verify the information
If the CAS is incorrect, follow the instructions to report any errors
Once you have verified that your CAS details are correct, you will receive your CAS within 5 working days
Accommodation fees on the CAS will always show as 0.00. You should, therefore, keep the money for your living expenses, including accommodation, in your bank account until after the visa application is processed. Most universities as for accommodation deposits, will not be included in the CAS.
Any tuition fees paid, including deposits and University scholarships, should show in your CAS. Please check this carefully as any outstanding funds need to be shown in your financial evidence with your visa application.
If you make a payment or receive a University scholarship after receiving your CAS number, you will receive a separate notification informing you that your CAS has been updated with new financial information.
Prepare your financial evidence.
You need to show funds that cover your first-year tuition fees plus living costs (sometimes referred to as ‘maintenance’). The required living costs are:
£1,015 per month for students, up to a maximum of 9 months (£9,135)
£680 per month each for any dependants, up to a maximum of 9 months (£6,180).
If you are self-funding, ensure that funds are held for 28 consecutive days before you apply for your visa online.
Include your ATAS certificate, if it is required. This only applies to certain science and technology courses at RQF level 7 and above. If this applies to you, this will be confirmed directly to you by our Admissions Team and will be stated in your CAS.
Evidence of your academic qualifications referred to in the CAS
English language test evidence, but only if referred to on your CAS.
For students coming to study degree-level courses, your CAS will confirm that the University is satisfied with your English language level and no evidence of this will be required at the time you apply for the Tier 4 visa.
The above list is not exhaustive, and you may need to include other documents such as translations or a letter of parental consent.
You will also be asked to pay the Immigration Health Surcharge to access the UK’s National Health Service (NHS). Any dependents who are applying to come to the UK for more than 6 months must also pay this surcharge. See our webpage on healthcare for international students for further information.
As part of the online visa application, you will book an appointment to attend a Visa Application Centre in person to submit your documents and have your biometric information taken (fingerprints and photographs).
You will receive a vignette visa (sticker) in your passport which will be valid for 30 days to allow you to travel to the UK. You will also receive a decision letter from UK Visas and Immigration confirming that your visa application is successful. You should show both the vignette and the letter at the UK border.
Your full visa will be printed on a biometric residence permit (BRP) and must be collected within ten days of arriving in the UK.
If your visa is for 6 months or less, the vignette will be valid for the full duration of your visa and you will not need to collect a BRP.
It is not as difficult to obtain a UK Tier 4 visa as you may think. But you must follow the procedures carefully. Applying for a visa for the first time is obviously new and uncharted territory. We have been supporting students for several years and we have a good success record in helping students obtain a visa. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask us. This is what we do, offer free and impartial advice. Please send you questions to WorldStudent Advisors Student Support Centre WhatsApp: +44 7756 295 943