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Apply for UK Student visa


Student visa points


We provide immigration advice and guidance to help your student visa application get the best chance of success

This is your one-stop shop for all UK visa related queries.

From requirements to the confirmation of acceptance for studies (CAS), we have all the answers you need to apply for your visa.

Who needs to apply for UK Student visa

The Student visa route  (replaced Tier 4 visa) is a point-based system (PBS) visa for ALL international students aged 16 or over, including EU, EEA, and Swiss students, who want to study in the UK at foundation or university degree level (Bachelor's, Master's or PhD) 

If you need a visa for children aged between 4 and 17 who wish to study at an independent school (also known as private or fee-paying schools) in the UK, you should apply for Student Child visa

What are Student visa requirements

  • you are a prospective student at the age of 16 years old or older

  • 16 or 17 years old students have to have the consent of your parent(s) or legal guardian

  • you applied for the university, and have been offered an unconditional place on an approved course with a licensed student sponsor, and have been issued a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) number;

  • you have to demonstrate the ability to read, write, speak and understand English to at least CEFR Level B2 , if studying at degree level or above) or CEFR Level B1, if you want to study at foundation (below degree) level

  • you have enough money to support yourself and pay for your course without relying on public funds

  • you need to demonstrate that you a genuine student
  • you might need to obtain a TB certificate depending on a country of your current residence

  • you need to be awarded 70 points in total to make a successful application 

When to apply for Student visa

Apply from outside the UK:

You can apply as soon as you recive your unconditional offer and CAS number from your university or other course provider, but not earlier than 6 months before your course starts.

It will take up to 3 weeks to receive the decision on your Student visa application

Apply from inside the UK (switch or extend)

If you are already in the UK on Student visa, you may be eligible to EXTEND your Student visa.

If you are in the UK on a different type of visa, you may be able to SWITCH to the Student visa category.


If you are eligible to ectend your permision to stay or swith to this vis category, then you can submit your visa application as early as 3 months before your course starts

It will take up to 8 weeks to receive the decision on your Student visa application

Points requirement for Student visa

  • 50 ponts: (Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS), Course requirement, Approved qualification requirement, Level of study requirement, Place of study requirement)

  • 10 points: Financial requirement. 

  • 10 points: English language requirement

    Standard Visitor visa is for individuals who wish to come to the UK for a temporary period of up to 6 months for the purpose of tourism, business, study (courses up to 6 months) and other permitted activities. The Short-term Student Visa (English Language) is a route for a person aged 16 and over who wants to study an English language course in the UK for between 6 and 11 months.
  • What is OSCE test?
    The OSCE test, which stands for Objective Structured Clinical Examination, is a practical exam that assesses how well someone can apply their medical knowledge and skills in real-life situations. It's commonly used to evaluate future doctors or healthcare professionals. In simple terms, the OSCE test is a hands-on exam that checks if future doctors or healthcare professionals can put their medical knowledge into practice in a realistic and structured way.
  • What are the additional visa application documents for coming to the UK to take PLAB or OSCE tests?
    When coming to the UK to take the PLAB or OSCE test, you may need to provide additional visa documents to support your application. While specific requirements can vary, here are common documents that may be requested: Confirmation of Test Booking: Provide evidence of your booking for the PLAB or OSCE test. This could include confirmation emails or letters from the testing center. Letter from the General Medical Council (GMC): The GMC may issue a letter confirming your eligibility to take the test. This letter can be an essential document for your visa application. Proof of Qualifications: Submit copies of your medical qualifications and certificates to demonstrate your eligibility for the PLAB or OSCE test.
  • Is there the English Language Requirement when applying for any Work-related Training Visit Visa ?
    If you are applying for a Work-related Training Visit Visa, you do not need to meet the English language requirement. This visa allows individuals to come to the country for work-related training purposes, and the English language proficiency is not a prerequisite for this specific visa category. However, the General Medical Council (GMC), which administers the PLAB test, requires candidates to demonstrate their proficiency in English to ensure effective communication and patient safety. The commonly accepted English language proficiency test for PLAB is the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). You will need to take the academic version of IELTS. You need to score of at least 7.0 in each testing area (reading, writing, lisyening and speaking) and an overall score of 7.5.
  • What do I need to know about Clinical attachments?
    Some international medical graduates prefer to gain experience in the NHS through a clinical attachment. This is often done either right before taking part two of the PLAB test or immediately after passing it. You can read a full Clinical Attachment Guide here
  • What is PLAB test?
    Your Guide to the PLAB Test The PLAB test, or Professional and Linguistic Assessments Board test, is a way to ensure that doctors who completed their education outside the UK have the necessary knowledge and skills to practice medicine in the country. Do You Need to Take the PLAB Test? If you graduated from a medical school outside the UK, European Economic Area (EEA), or Switzerland, chances are you'll need to take the PLAB test. This test ensures that you possess the same knowledge and abilities as a doctor beginning the second year of their Foundation Programme training in the UK. What's Involved in the PLAB Test? The test consists of two parts. Part 1 is a written multiple-choice exam with 180 questions. Part 2 is a practical Objective Structured Clinical Exam (OSCE). Both parts must be passed before you can apply for registration with a license to practice medicine in the UK. Requirements Before Taking PLAB: Before taking the PLAB test, you need to create a GMC Online account and demonstrate that your medical qualification and English proficiency meet the necessary standards. Once verified, you can book your place for part 1 of the PLAB test. PLAB Part 1: PLAB 1 is a written exam comprising 180 multiple-choice questions that you must answer within three hours. The questions present short scenarios followed by a choice of five possible answers. Part 1 can be taken in various countries, and you can check available locations and dates on GMC Online. PLAB Part 2: PLAB 2 is an Objective Structured Clinical Exam (OSCE) consisting of 16 scenarios, each lasting eight minutes. It aims to simulate real-life settings, such as mock consultations or scenarios in an acute ward. Part 2 tests are conducted throughout the year at the clinical assessment center. After Passing PLAB 1 and PLAB 2: Once you pass both parts, you can apply for registration with a license to practice. Your application must be approved within two years of passing part 2. After approval and gaining registration, you can work as a doctor in the UK.
  • What course can I study under the UK Student visa route?
    If you are a prospective student applying for the UK Student Visa, you can opt for a number of courses: A full-time course resulting in a qualification under degree level (RQF level 3, 4, or 5) that encompasses a minimum of 15 hours of organised daytime study every week; A full-time course culminating in a qualification at degree level or above (RQF level 6, 7, or 8); A full-time course at degree level or above (RQF level 6,7 or 8) equivalent to a UK higher education course, delivered as a component of a more extended overseas programme; A part-time course leading to a qualification that transcends the degree level (RQF level 7 or higher); A certified foundation programme for postgraduate doctors or dentists, provided you have acquired a recognised UK degree in medicine or dentistry. This necessitates receiving that degree from a registered student sponsor and dedicating your final year, alongside at least one additional year of studies, towards achieving that degree in the UK; An English language course standing at level B2 or higher, as per the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages.
  • What is CAS?
    The Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) is a unique electronic reference number that is generated by the UK's visa system, referred to as the Student route (which was previously known as Tier 4). It's issued to international students who have been offered a place to study at a UK educational institution. Your educational institution, or 'student sponsor,' generates your CAS once they've offered you a place on a course. It contains information about you, your course, your qualifications, and evidence of your financial status. The CAS number is crucial to your Student Visa application, as it verifies to the UK Home Office that you've been accepted to study at a recognized educational institution in the UK. The CAS is also digitally linked to your other application information, so the Home Office can access all the necessary details to process your visa application. A single CAS number is only valid for one Student Visa application, and it's important to note that the CAS expires six months after issuance.
  • Can I extend my UK Student visa?
    Extend your UK student visa to continue your course or pursue a new one. This applies to those with a current Student visa or Tier 4 (General) student visa. To qualify, you must: Be in the UK on a Student or Tier 4 (General) student visa. Have an unconditional offer from a licensed student sponsor, verified by your Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS). Demonstrate that your new course is at a higher academic level than your current one (some exceptions apply). If your current visa duration is less than 12 months, prove you have sufficient funds. Your partner or children must apply separately. Academic progress requirements apply, and your new course must be at a higher level or related to the previous one. Some exceptions exist, such as resitting exams or completing a PhD. Apply online three months before your course starts, ensuring your new course begins within 28 days of your current visa expiring. Apply within six months of receiving your CAS. You can remain in the UK during the application process.
  • Dependents of International Students
    As of January 2024, changes to the UK's Immigration Rules affect the ability of international students to bring dependants. The new rules impose restrictions on bringing dependants for students under the Student route, particularly those studying postgraduate courses starting on or after 1 January 2024. Under these changes, students who are studying a postgraduate course starting on or after 1 January 2024, and who do not fall into any other categories of students eligible to have dependants, can only bring dependants to the UK (under the Student route) if their course falls into one of the specified categories: A PhD course A doctoral qualification A research-based higher degree The term "Research-based higher degree" is defined in the Immigration Rules, referring to a postgraduate program that includes a research component, with an emphasis on producing original work. Importantly, for a program to be considered a "Research-based higher degree," the research component must be larger than any accompanying taught component, measured by student effort. These changes reflect a more restrictive approach to dependants of international students, limiting the eligibility for bringing family members to the UK under the Student route.
  • Applications for Settlement by Students
    The Student category does not lead to settlement in the UK. The length of time that you may stay in the UK will vary according to the type of course that you will be studying. If you are 18 years old or over and your course is at degree level, you will usually be able to stay in the UK as a Student for up to 5 years. If your course is below degree level, you will usually be able to stay in the UK on the Student route for up to 2 years. There are exceptions to the above rule, including, for certain subjects such as architecture, medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine and science, law and some music courses. Student Visa holders may be eligible to extend their stay into other immigration routes which can lead to settlement. If you have spent 10 years continuously and lawfully in the UK then you may qualify for indefinite leave to remain on the basis of 10 years Long Residence.

To discuss your UK Student Visa application please contact our Student Visa lawyers on

+44 7513621625 or schedule consultation below.

Need a student accommodation?

Premium Property Solutions (PPS) is a property finding boutique specialising in tailor-made search and selection of properties for your needs whether it is a room in students halls or a privately rented accomodation. 
Our relocation experts are here to help you. Simply send us an enquiry or our visit
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