Student Visa in the UK

Student Visa in the UK

The increasing popularity of the UK among Indian students is clearly visible. Since 2019, we have already seen a 200% growth in the number of student visa applications in the UK. As of today, India holds almost 20% of the total non-EU enrolments, which makes it a significant growth factor.


Are you planning to study in the UK? If, yes, then you need to go through a lot of paperwork and most of it contributes to the visa application. Well, the amount of information can be intimidating, but if you take organized steps, everything will fall in line.


Getting a student visa in the UK is not hard. Surprisingly, there is a 94% acceptance rate. And if you follow this article thoroughly, you might eliminate any chance of rejection.


In this article, we will cover all the necessary information for getting a student visa in the UK.


Let’s get started. 

Requirements for a Student Visa in the UK

A student visa requires a long list of documents and some of them might take weeks to process. Therefore, you should start working on your visa application as soon as you get your acceptance letter from the university.


Here is the  list of all the required documents for a student visa in the UK:


Valid passport

For a student visa, you should have a valid passport. Even if your passport does not cover the entire duration of your academic program, it should have at least 6 months of remaining validity. You can also renew your passport from the Indian Embassy in the UK.


Passport size photographs

This one goes without saying. Even the basic documentation requires the latest passport-size photographs. Always carry extra passport-size photographs with you. Also, keep a digital copy with you at all times.


Acceptance letter

 It is the first piece of document that you receive from the university. Make sure you attach it with the application form. You should keep a copy of all the documents that you receive or submit throughout the application process.


Proof of funds

It is one of the most important documents for a visa application. It is a bank statement that proves that you have enough funds to cover your education as well as accommodation in the country.


Medical test

 As an international student, it is mandatory to go through a medical checkup to ensure that you are not carrying any virus. Also, it will help you determine if you are fit for a plane journey. For most of the south-Asian countries, it is mandatory to have a tuberculosis test before going abroad.


Academic records

Just like any other educational institution, you need to submit your previous academic records for applying to a British university. If they are not in English, you should get them translated and attach a document that proves the authenticity of the translation agency.


Proof of language proficiency

Being a resident of a non-English country, you will need proof of language proficiency like IELTS, TOEFL, etc to apply for education in an English-speaking country like the UK.


CAS (Confirmation for Acceptance for Studies) letter

As soon as you get your acceptance letter from the university, you should accept the letter through the university website. In addition to that, you might have to pay your tuition fee or an extra registration fee to confirm your seat in the program. Only after that, the university will start working on your CAS letter.


Biometric Residence Permit

After submitting the visa application, you will be asked to come for document verification and biometric data collection. That biometric data goes to the preparation of your Biometric Residence Permit or BRP. You can only collect your BRP from the UK.


Health insurance/ Immigration Healthcare Surcharge

The UK follows a free public healthcare system through the National Health Service. As an international student, you are eligible for free healthcare services but you need to pay an Immigration health surcharge. An IHS cost significantly less than any private health insurance.



Eligibility for Studying in the UK

British universities follow eligibility criteria for international students. You should have these records with you before applying to the university:


Academic records

If you are planning to enroll in a graduation course, you should have a score of more than 70% in your 10th as well as 12th standard. Some universities give more importance to previous academic records than others.


GMAT or GRE score

Universities in the UK think highly of exams like GMAT and GRE. In most universities, it is mandatory to appear in these exams.


Some universities might ask for a higher GMAT or GRE score but this is the minimum score for getting into a British University:


GMAT score: 600+

GRE Score: 300+


IELTS or TOEFL score

 Another mandatory document is a language proficiency exam like IELTS or TOEFL.


IELTS score: 6.0-7.5

TOEFL score: 90+


The required score differs with each university. You should always check the latest guidelines.

Steps to Obtaining your Student Visa for the UK

Here is the detailed process of getting your student visa in the UK:


Step 1: Make yourself eligible: As mentioned above, most of the universities in the UK ask for GRE/GMAT and IELTS/TOEFL scores. It will take some time to prepare, appear and pass the exams. Therefore, you should start working on them months ahead of schedule. You can not apply to any university without these scorecards.


Step 2: Apply to suitable universities: Once you are eligible for studying in the UK, you should start sorting the suitable institutions for you. Apply to multiple universities as it will increase your acceptance rate. You can not apply for a visa without an acceptance letter.


Step 3: Confirm and Pay: As you start receiving the acceptance letters, confirm the acceptance through the official website of the university. Every university asks for a part of the tuition fee or an additional charge to confirm your seat in the university.


Step 4: Receive your CAS letter: After the confirmation, the university will mail you a CAS letter that verifies your confirmation for studies In the UK. It is an essential document for applying for a student visa.   


Step 5: Arrange your funds: Arranging proof of funds is another mandatory step toward applying for a visa. 


Step 6: Prepare supporting documents: Prepare all the supporting documents including passport, photographs, ID proofs, or any other required document.


Step 7: Complete the visa application form: Determine the type of visa that you need. If your course duration is 6-11 months, you should go for a short-term study visa. If the duration exceeds any further, go for a tier-4 general student visa. Complete the application form and attach all the required documents.


Step 8: Select a location to collect your BRP: In most cases, you are asked to select a location for collecting your BRP even before submitting your biometric data. Select a UK airport that you will prefer for verification and BRP collection.


Step 9: Pay your application fee and submit: Double-check all the information and submit your visa application. 



Step 10: Schedule an appointment for verification: After the form submission, you should wait for the decision. In the meantime, the officials will schedule an appointment for an interview and biometric data collection. Visa approval usually takes 4-6 weeks but you should start the process about 3 months prior to the academic session.


Step 11: Receive your passport with an entry vignette: If everything goes well, you will receive your passport with an entry vignette for the UK.


Step 12: Fly to the UK and collect your permit: Book your flight tickets on time and fly to the selected location to collect your BRP.


Arranging documents, acceptance letter, visa, and getting flight tickets takes time. If you start your visa process at the eleventh hour, you will not have enough time for any revision. If anything goes wrong, your admission will have to wait till the next academic session. There are no exemptions when it comes to international affairs. Therefore, always keep spare time to make up for any last-minute issues.


The UK offers world-class education to its students. Be patient and work attentively towards getting your student visa for the UK. It is a time-consuming procedure but if you know the insights, it is simple. Get your visa approved and conquer your dreams.


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