Applying for a Student Visa inside the UK
You can apply for a Student Visa inside the UK if you meet the UKVI's eligibility requirements to do so. See our information on how to understand which visa application documents to prepare, how to get a CAS, how to complete the Student Visa application form as well as how and when to apply.
Changes to your studies may require you to apply for a Student Visa - please see our webpages for information and contact us at International Student Support if you have any visa related questions about changes to studies.
Where your offer of study confirms an ATAS certificate is required for your course, please note that you need to make sure you apply for and receive this in time to upload with your other Student Visa application documents, and to be able to study at UoG. See the "Documents and CAS" section for information on applying for an ATAS certificate.
Eligibility to apply for a Student Visa inside the UK
Eligibility Requirements to apply for a Student Visa in the UK:
You need to meet all the UKVI's eligiblity requirements to make a Student Visa application in the UK.
Current UK visa
- Hold a valid Student (or Tier 4 (General) visa, or
- Hold a valid visa for a category that UKVI permit to "switch" into the Student Visa route*
*UKVI say you cannot apply in the UK to "switch" to a Student Visa if you are in the UK on one of the following visa types -
- a visit visa
- a short-term student visa
- a Parent of a Child Student visa
- a seasonal worker visa
- a domestic worker in a private household visa
- leave outside the immigration rules
Visa must still be valid (has not expired) on the date of visa application.
You need a new UoG CAS to use with your Student Visa application. For example, when starting a new course, progressing to the higher level of an integrated course, or continuing study on the same course following changes to your studies. See the "Your CAS" webpages.
Course Start Date on CAS
This must be either before your current visa expires, or, within the 28 days after your current visa expires.
Academic Progression requirement
Where your CAS is for a new course, you must have successfully completed the course you have been studying on your current Student Visa to meet the academic progression requirement. You will either provide evidence of having successfully completed the course, or your CAS must bear a statement confirming this.
Otherwise, your new CAS must state the reason (from those listed in Appendix Student of the Immigration Rules) explaining how you are either demonstrating academic progression, or, are exempt from demonstrating academic progression (as per one of the listed exceptions).
- If the new course your new CAS is issued for is at the same level as the course successfully completed on your current Student Visa please see ST14.3(c) of Appendix Student for the additional information required on your CAS.
- You cannot apply for a Student Visa in the UK if the new course is at a lower level than the course successfully completed on your current Student Visa, or, where your CAS does bear a valid academic progression statement as per Appendix Student.
You will need to have enough money to cover:
➢ any unpaid tuition fees (see your CAS / official tuition fee receipts), plus
➢ £1023 for each month of your course (up to 9 months (£9207) for living costs
See the "Documents and CAS" section and the ISS "Prepare Guide" for information about the maintenance requirement, and the financial documents UKVI say you can prepare as evidence of meeting the maintenance requirement.
*If you have been living in the UK on a valid visa for 12 months or more at the time you make your Student Visa application in the UK, UKVI say you will not be asked to provide evidence of meeting the maintenance requirements.
When to apply
When to apply
You can apply once you have the new CAS for your new course or period of forthcoming studies. Where you are applying for a Student Visa in the UK, Admissions can usually only issue the CAS within the 3 months before your visa expiry date (except where you are issued a new CAS as you are applying for a Student Visa to move to the higher level of an integrated course, for example).
- You must always apply for the Student Visa on or before your current visa expiry date (as part of making an "in-time visa application)
- The date you submit the online Student Visa application form is the date you have applied for the Student Visa (this is called the "date of application")
- You must make an "in-time" visa application to be able to study at UoG (and to stay lawfully in the UK if your current visa expires before UKVI make a decision on your Student Visa application)
You do not need to receive the new Student Visa before your current visa expires to be able to start or continue your studies at UoG (except when switching from a Graduate Visa). You must however show evidence that you have made an "in-time" visa application (the "Document Checklist") to the Immigration Compliance Team to:
- complete Visa Registration and start your course (where you are a new student) or
- provide evidence of the date of application to the Immigration Compliance Team (where you are a current UoG student continuing study on the same course).
If your current Student Visa was issued for study at UoG:
You will need to submit the online Student Visa application form and complete Visa Registration at UoG:
- on or before your visa expiry date, and
- within the 6 weeks following your course start date on your CAS
If your current Student Visa was issued for study at another institution (e.g. GIC):
You will need to submit the online Student Visa application form and complete Visa Registration at UoG:
- on or before your visa expiry date, and
- on or before the latest course start date on your UoG CAS
Making an "in-time" visa application
This allows you to:
- continue to live in the UK lawfully under the conditions of your current visa while you wait for your Student Visa application decision (even if your current visa expires while you are waiting)
- start or continue your studies at UoG while you wait for UKVI to make a decision on your Student Visa application*
*Please note: if you are applying in the UK to switch from a Graduate Visa to a Student Visa you must receive the Student Visa and complete Visa Registration with this before you can start your studies at UoG.
"Date of application"
The date you submit the online Student Visa application form (after paying the visa processing fees) is referred to by UKVI as the "date of application". The date of application must be on or before your current visa expiry date. Applying before your current visa expires is part of making an "in-time" visa application.
Please note: If you do not make an "in-time" visa application before your visa expires, and you continue staying in the UK after your visa expiry date (including where you make a Student Visa application after your visa expiry date), this is called "overstaying".
Overstaying should be avoided wherever possible. You will not hold valid immigration leave to live or remain in the UK and you will not be allowed to study or work where you become an overstayer. You can see information about overstaying on the UKCISA webpages.
This is the evidence you need to show the Immigration Compliance Team to prove that you have made an "in-time" visa application.
The Document Checklist states the date you submitted the online Student Visa application form. It will be available to you after you have paid the visa processing fees (in one of the last sections of the online visa application form).
You will be taken to a screen where you can click on a link to view the Document Checklist, save a PDF copy and print this. We discuss how to find the Document Checklist in the ISS Submit Guide.
Complete and submit the Student Visa online application form
If your current visa is a Student or Tier 4 (General) visa: Complete the online Student Visa application form here to "extend" your visa.
If you hold another type of eligible visa to apply in the UK: Complete the online Student visa application form to "switch" into the Student Visa route.
Remember - you must always submit your Student Visa application on or before your current visa expires and make an "in-time" visa application when applying in the UK.
Estimated visa processing times
The estimated visa processing time will depend on whether you use a standard or priority visa application service. UKVI can start processing your visa application once you have uploaded your visa application documents (and where you do not use the IDV app, after you have given your biometric details at a UKVCAS appointment).
Usually, the estimated visa processing time when using the Standard application service is up to 8 weeks.
You may wish to consider paying more fees and using a "priority" visa application service if you would like to receive your visa decision faster (for example, the estimated visa processing time is 5 working days when using the "Priority" application service or the next working day when using the "Super Priority" application service).
Pay visa application fees and Immigration Health Surcharge
Visa application fee: When you have paid the visa application fee your online Student Visa application form will be submitted (the date you pay the visa fees is the date you have made the Student Visa application). It is £490 for visa fees when you apply using the Standard application service.
Immigration Health Surcharge: In most cases you will have to pay the Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS). Check how much to expect to pay here. The amount you pay for IHS will depend on the length of visa you will be granted. Where your overall course is longer than 12 months you can expect UKVI to grant you a visa that expires 4 months after the course end date on your CAS.
From 6 February 2024, IHS will be charged at £776 for each period of visa applied for that is 6-12 months long and £388 for any period of less than 6 months.
A very limited number of people are exempt from paying the immigration health surcharge. UKVI discuss this on their webpages here.
Students receiving funding from a Chevening, Marshall or Commonwealth Scholarships who have chosen the relevant type of application at the beginning of the form, do not need to pay the IHS (but will still have to complete the IHS section of the application form; the form will calculate the IHS payment as '£0.00').
If your healthcare is paid for by an EU country or Switzerland see the UKVI webpages for information on when you may be able to receive a full or partial IHS refund.
IDV app / Biometric details
When you follow the link to the Student Visa application form from the UKVI website, you may be asked to use the IDV app. Where you use the IDV app your Biometric details that were given for your previous visa application (usually where this was made in the UK) are re-used.
Where you cannot use the app please click on the link shown on the screen that says "I do not have a phone that can use the app".
If you cannot use the IDV app, or you are not given the option to use the IDV app, you will need to book and attend a UKVCAS appointment to give your biometrics details for your visa application.
UKVCAS biometric appointments need to be booked for a date that falls within the 45 working days after you have submitted your Student Visa application form - see the UKVI's Biometric Enrolment guidance for details.
Once you have submitted the visa application form
UKVI say that if you leave the Common Travel Area (CTA) after making a Student Visa application (and before receiving the application decision) that they will withdraw your visa application. The CTA comprises UK (including Jersey, Guernsey & Isle of Man) and Ireland. Please do not leave the CTA until you have received your visa application decision and new Student Visa.
Undertake any remaining tasks for the visa application process:
- upload visa application documents
- download your Document Checkist (use for Visa Registration)
- book and attend UKVCAS centre to give biometric details (if you did not use the IDV app)
If you used the IDV app...
After submitting the online visa application form you will be prompted to upload any required visa application documents via your UKVI online application account. Follow the instructions on the screen. Your biometric details given for your previous UK visa application will be re-used.
If you did not use the IDV app...
You will be prompted on screen to make a UKVCAS online account and book a UKVCAS appointment (to give your biometric details). You will upload your visa application documents via the UKVCAS website before the date you attend the UKVCAS appointment.
Wait for a decision e-mail from UKVI: Once a decision has been made on your visa application you will receive a decision e-mail from UKVI. The decision e-mail will confirm the outcome of your visa application. It will also state if you have been granted a digital visa status (and how to access your share code if so) or a BRP. Keep a copy of the decision e-mail somewhere safe.
If you change your UK address after submitting the online visa application form: You must inform UKVI of any address change while waiting to receive your visa decision or BRP. See the UKVI webpages for how to update UKVI with a new address.
If your current visa was issued on a BRP or a visa sticker, you would tell UKVI about a change of address using the online form.
If you were granted an online digital status for your current visa, you can change your address on your online visa account.
Documents and CAS
See the information on the "Your CAS" webpages. This must be a valid CAS issued for either a new course at UoG or issued to you when applying for a Student Visa following changes to your UoG studies. The CAS must also contain a relevant academic progression statement when you are applying for a Student Visa in the UK.
Documents and requirements
Your documents can be made in the UK or outside the UK, however they must meet the UKVI's requirements (as discussed in the UKVI's guidance and Immigration Rules):
Prepare your visa application documents before you submit your online visa application form wherever possible and upload these by the relevant deadline:
- If you use the IDV app: before the document upload deadline stated on your UKVI application account (shown on screen after submitting your Student Visa application form)
- If you do not use the IDV app: before the date of your UKVCAS biometrics appointment
See our Prepare Guide where we offer detailed information about the maintenance requirement, preparing documents and the UKVI's document requirements.
Common documents to prepare when applying for a Student Visa
- Current passport (ID page)
- Current visa (e.g. copy of BRP / visa sticker). Digital visa holders refer to their online visa details.
- CAS: See the information on the webpages. Tuition fees paid after your CAS was issued will not show on your CAS - you would need to prepare tuition fees receipts from University of Glasgow as evidence of the amount paid.
- Academic Progression evidence: If your CAS is for a new course at UoG, unless your CAS states you are demonstrating academic progression as you successfully completed the course your current Student Visa was granted for, you need to include evidence of this with your Student Visa application (e.g. certificate or formal "highly likely to successfully complete" letter).
- Academic documents stated on CAS: see the "English Language" and "Evidence used to obtain offer" sections. As UoG is an "HEP with a track record of compliance" you may be told that you do not need to submit academic documents stated on your CAS when you come to the documents section of your Student Visa application. Please also see the information on "Differential Evidence" at the end of this section.
- ATAS certificate: if offer letter / CAS from Admissions says ATAS certificate required, apply for this as soon as possible. It can take around 4-6 weeks for the FCDO to process an ATAS application. You need to apply for a new ATAS certificate whenever you make a Student Visa application. See your offer letter details and contact your School Office / Graduate School for the course / research details, name of your supervisor etc to write on the ATAS application (Admissions can confirm the CAH3 code).
* You must receive the ATAS certificate in time and submit this with your other Student Visa application documents (by the deadline for document uploads). You also need to show evidence to that you have received your ATAS certificate to be able to start / continue your course at UoG.
- Financial evidence: documents can be made outside the UK but must meet UKVI's document requirements and show you meet UKVI's maintenance requirements i.e. enough money to cover:
➢ any unpaid tuition fees (see your CAS / official tuition fee receipts), plus
➢ £1023 for each month of your course (up to 9 months (£9207) for living costs.
Tuition fees paid after the CAS has been issued will not be shown on your CAS. Prepare tuition fees receipts from University of Glasgow as evidence of the amount of tuition fees you have paid.
- Using financial evidence in a parent or legal guardian's name: We discuss this further along with the UKVI document requirements in our Prepare Guide - you will also need to prepare additional documents, i.e.:
➢Evidence of relationship to your parents (e.g. birth certificate), and
➢Letter of consent from your parents
- Official financial sponsor letter: (e.g. if you will receive official financial sponsorship / scholarship money for tuition fees and living costs). See UKVI's definition of who is an official financial sponsor and evidence requirements in the Prepare Guide. Evidence will either be your CAS or official financial sponsor letter.
If the official financial sponsorship / scholarship money is paid to you via UoG, the details of this should be stated on your CAS. Otherwise, you need to prepare an official financial sponsor letter.
Your sponsor letter will need to state your financial sponsor's written consent to you applying for a Student Visa to stay longer in the UK where:
- you are continuing a course and will continue to receive financial sponsorship (or scholarship) money (that covers both tuition fees and living costs) from a government or international scholarship agency, or
- you completed a course in the UK within the 12 months before the date you applied for a Student Visa that you received financial sponsorship (or scholarship) money from a government or international scholarship agency that covered both tuition fees and living costs.
You will not need to provide the financial sponsor's written consent where:
- Money not received from a government or international scholarship agency
- Money received via UoG (e.g. details of official financial sponsorship / scholarship are stated on the CAS)
- Money received not for both tuition fees and living costs (where you are “partially funded”).
- Currency Conversions: If the currency on your financial document is not in GBP, you need to make and save a currency conversion to GBP (as a PDF) on the day you submit the online visa application form. Use: https://www.oanda.com/currency-converter/en/
- Translation of any document not in English: Must meet the requirements in UKVI's Student Guidance:
"If a document is not in English or Welsh, the applicant must provide a fully certified translation from a professional translator or translation company that can be independently verified by the Home Office. The translation must include all of the following information:
• confirmation that it is an accurate translation of the document
• the date of translation
• the full name and signature of the translator or an official from the translation company
• the translator or translation company’s contact details"
Other considerations when preparing documents
Applicants who have lived in the UK for 12 months or more:
If you have been living in the UK on a valid visa for 12 months or more at the time you make your Student Visa application, UKVI say you will not be asked to provide financial evidence of meeting the Student Visa maintenance requirements.
"Differential Evidence" arrangements and documents:
Certain nationals applying for a Student Route visa may not be asked to provide evidence of their finances or their 'evidence used to obtain the offer' documents with their visa application - see Appendix Student, paragraph ST 22.1 for details. However it is best to prepare these documents anyway, as UKVI can ask for them at any time before they make a decision on your visa application. You would still need to prepare and submit an ATAS certificate and written consent from your official financial sponsor where required as usual however.
ISS Prepare-Complete-Submit Guides (applying for a Student Visa in the UK)
The Prepare-Complete-Submit guides offer step by step, in-depth information about preparing for and making a Student Visa application in the UK. They also discuss how to check the documents you need to prepare, the UKVI requirements to be met (such as maintenance and academic progression) and what happens after you have applied for a Student Visa:
PREPARE to make your visa application and gather the documents required
COMPLETE your visa application form - see how to answer the questions
SUBMIT your visa application form, upload documents and give Biometrics if you did not use the IDV app (includes information on evidence required for Visa Registration and what to do when you get your new visa)
Can I have my dependants stay with me?
Please see the information on (Student) Dependants here.
BRPs and Digital Visa Status
Please note: From 01 January 2025 UKVI intend to issue all visa holders with an online digital visa status which they will be able to access with a share code. They have announced that they do not intend to issue BRPs after this date.
If your visa decision says you will get a BRP
Check your BRP details are correct once you receive this and upload a copy to the Immigration Compliance team using the Helpdesk form called Visa/Passport Updates.
If you have been issued a BRP that expires 31 December 2024, but the visa expiry date stated on your decision e-mail is a later date: UKVI say you will be issued with a digital visa status for the remainder of your leave and they will e-mail you regarding this in early 2024.
How you will receive your BRP: UKVI will post your new BRP to you via Royal Mail to the UK address you entered onto your visa application form. See the UKVI's information about receiving a BRP after making a visa application in the UK.
If Royal Mail attempt a delivery but were unable for any reason to deliver your BRP package, they will leave a "Something for you" card explaining this and what you need to do next.
This card may be posted through your letterbox or left at the main front door of your building, or at the reception for your building, for example. Where you receive a card, you will need to arrange a redelivery, or collect your BRP package from the local Royal Mail Office - the card will explain how to do this. Please see the UKVI's BRP Delivery FAQs document and a picture of BRP envelope you can expect to receive so you know what to look out for.
Change of address: You must inform UKVI of any address change while waiting to receive your visa decision or BRP. See the UKVI webpages for how to update UKVI with a new address. If your current visa was issued as a BRP or on a visa sticker, you would tell UKVI about a change of address using the online form. If you were granted your current visa as an online digital status you can change your address on your online visa account. It is not possible to change the address your BRP will be delivered to via Royal Mail.
After receiving the new BRP - returning an old or expired BRP:
When you apply for and receive a new visa in the UK, you will usually be asked to return the old BRP to the UKVI (you would do this after receiving the new BRP). We understand that UKVI will ask you to:
- cut the old, expired or cancelled BRP in half
- put this in a plain, windowless envelope
- post to the UKVI using the address below
P.O. Box 195
If your visa decision says you will get a digital visa status
Follow the link and check you can get a share code - you will need to be able to show your digital visa status when proving your right to study or work in the UK, when entering the UK if asked by a UK Border Officer to do so, and as part of Visa Registration at UoG.
You will also need to send a share code to the Immigration Compliance team via the Helpdesk so they can see your new visa details (and so you can continue your studies).
If you leave the UK for a short period (e.g. for a holiday, permitted period of absence in vacation period or after completing your course) when you travel back to the UK you will need to show your digital visa. You should make sure you can log in to your online UKVI account to show your visa details when re-entering the UK, or get a share code to offer to a UK Border Officer so they can view your digital visa details.
Report any errors with your BRP or digital visa to UKVI
- Errors in length of visa or visa conditions on a BRP - apply online for administrative review within 14 days of (the Administrative Review application fee will be refunded if UKVI agree there was an error)
- All other errors on a BRP: report online within 10 days of receipt of the BRP.
- Errors on a digital visa: contact UKVI's Settlement Resolution Centre as soon as possible.
Student Visa conditions
Student Visa conditions
See Appendix Student for your visa conditions, including for work and study while you are in the UK on a Student Visa, under "Period and conditions of grant for a Student".
You should also read the information on the Immigration Compliance Team webpages about your responsibilities as a Student Visa holder, including the attendance and engagement requirements you need to meet to avoid your Student Visa sponsorship being affected.
This information also discusses permitted periods of absence from studies, where you need consent first from your School Office / Graduate School and when taking time away from studies or spending time outside the UK during term time may affect your Student Visa sponsorship.
Changes to your studies may affect your Student Visa validity / expiry date, or require you to make a Student Visa application. See our webpages for information on common scenarios.
Travelling on your Student Visa (during or after studies)
Travelling outside the UK
You need to show evidence of having a valid Student Visa whenever you re-enter the UK along with your passport. Evidence of your Student Visa will be your BRP, or, your digital visa status (you should prepare a share code before travelling back to the UK).
Make sure you do not spend more than the permitted time outside the UK during your course / in term time, and that you have any relevant consent where required to be outside the UK in term time from your School Office / Graduate School, as discussed in the "Your responsibilities" and "Attendance and Engagement" sections on the Immigration Compliance Team webpages.
Some changes to studies reported to UKVI by the Immigration Compliance Team would affect your Student Visa validity or expiry date (e.g. early course completion, absences longer than permitted period in term-time, withdrawal from studies etc). Check with the Immigration Compliance team if you are unsure whether they have made a report to UKVI / the Home Office that would affect your Student Visa validity / expiry date.
You can also see the ISS webpages for information how some of the most common changes to studies may affect your Student Visa.
Returning to the UK on your Student Visa after completing your course
If you leave the UK after completing your UoG course, UKVI say you can still return to the UK using your Student Visa, so long as your Student Visa is still valid, and you re-enter the UK before your Student Visa expiry date.
If you are unsure whether a report was made by the Immigration Compliance Team that would affect your Student Visa validity and where you have reason to understand a report may have been made in your case (e.g. early completion of your course, a period of absence in term-time where you no longer met the attendance and engagement requirements, the withdrawal from your studies etc) please contact the Immigration Compliance Team to check. Where a report has made to UKVI to end your visa sponsorship, or to report an early course completion date, your visa expiry date would be affected as a result.
It is always at the discretion of a UK Border Officer whether to allow entry to the UK. So you should be prepared to explain why you are coming back to the UK if asked to do so by a UK Border Officer. You may wish to prepare documents to help you explain this and carry these in your hand luggage.
See the examples below:
Student is returning to the UK to resume their course following an authorised absence of less than 60 days (or other permitted duration) during term time, or, after spending time outside the UK during vacation period for their course. You could print off a Certifying Letter to demonstrate you are a current, registered UoG student.
Student left the UK after completing their course and is returning to the UK...
...to apply for a Student Visa for a new course. You could print off the CAS for your new course and explain you will make a Student Visa application on or before your current Student Visa expiry date.
...to apply for the Graduate Visa. You could print a Certifying Letter for Former Students . You can also explain a Graduate Visa application can only be made in the UK while your Student Visa is still valid, how you meet the requirements to apply for a Graduate Visa, and that you will apply for a Graduate Visa either on before your current Student Visa expiry date.
...to attend their graduation ceremony. You could print a Certifying Letter for Former Students . You may also include any other evidence you may have from enrolling for graduation at UoG, as well as evidence you plan to leave the UK again on or before your Student Visa expiry date (e.g. flight tickets).
UKVI's Immigration Rules: