Student Visa

Student Visa

What is Student Visa?

The new Student Visa offers an opportunity for overseas students aiming to achieve higher academic goals in the UK. The government introduced this visa type as a replacement of Tier 4 General Visa on 5th October 2020.

When you receive an unconditional offer of a place on a course from a licensed student sponsor, you will be issued a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS), which has a unique reference number and includes details about the course of study and the student’s personal details. You need the CAS to apply your Student Visa.

Key Points
  • route for people over 16 to study in the UK
  • requires an unconditional offer of a place on a course 
  • requires sufficient means to cover course fees
  • maintenance and English language requirements apply – you may not need to prove financial support if you are from a ‘differential evidence requirement’ listed country
  • possibility to bring family members, with certain restrictions
  • visa duration depends on course length and prior completed study 
  • no fixed path to settlement but settlement is possible
  • tuberculosis test results are required if you are from a designated country

If you are between 4-17 and seek for private education in the UK, please refer to Child Student Visa. For Short-term study of the English language, please refer to Short-term Study Visa.

Types of Courses

The course can fall under the following categories:

  • a full-time course leading to a qualification that is below degree level (RQF level 3, 4, or 5) with a minimum of 15 hours of organised daytime study per week
  • a full-time course leading to a qualification that is 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) that is equivalent to a UK higher education course and is being delivered as part of a longer course overseas
  • a part-time course leading to a qualification that is above degree level (RQF level 7 or above)
  • a recognised foundation programme for postgraduate doctors or dentists
  • an English language course at level B2 or higher in the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages.

Knowledge of English

You must demonstrate your ability to read, write, speak, and understand English at a certain level on the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) scale:

  • degree level or above: Equivalent to CEFR level B2.
  • below degree level: CEFR level B1.
Studying with a Higher Education Provider

If you’re studying at degree level or above, your Higher Education Provider (HEP) can assess your English level themselves. This assessment must still be equivalent to a CEFR level B2.

Your Partner and Children

Your partner and children (dependants) might be eligible to apply to come to or stay longer in the UK. You must fall under one of the following categories:

  • a government-sponsored student starting a course lasting over 6 months.
  • a full-time student on a postgraduate level course (RQF level 7 or above) lasting 9 months or more. If your postgraduate level course starts on or after 1st January, 2024, it must be either:
    1. a PhD or other doctorate (RQF level 8).
    2. a research-based higher degree.

Extending Your Visa

You can extend your Student Visa to prolong your stay and continue your current course or undertake a new one. To be eligible, you must:

  • be in the UK on a Student Visa or a previous Tier 4 (General) student visa.
  • have an unconditional offer from a licensed student sponsor, as demonstrated by your CAS.
  • show ‘academic progression’ – indicating that your new course will be at a higher academic level than your current one.


To Give Your Visa the Best Chance to Success, Get in Touch

To give your visa the best chance to success and enjoy the hassle-free experience with full support of Latta International’s experienced immigration experts, or if you wish to speak directly with one of our immigration specialists to discuss and answer any questions about business and personal immigration, education in the UK and other visa issues, please contact our Glasgow Head Office on Phone T: +44 (0)141 212 3355 or request a call back by completing the Online Form. You can also email us More information can be found from Contact Us.  

*Disclaimer: The above information is for general reference only. Specialist legal advice should be sought.

Latest update: August 2023