UK Student Visa
To qualify to travel to the UK as a student you must be able to prove that you have been accepted on a course of study at an educational establishment that is on the UK 's Department for Education and Skills (DfES) Register of Education and Training Providers. You are able to search this register on the DfES website at www.dfes.gov.uk
You must be able to show that you are going to register on one of the following:
- a recognised full-time degree course
- a course run during the week involving at least 15 hours of organised daytime study each week
- a full-time course at an independent fee-paying school.
In addition you must:
- be able to pay for your course and support yourself and any dependants, and live in the UK without working full time (part-time employment is allowed) or any help from public funds
- intend to leave the UK when you complete your studies.
You must make your application to the relevant British Mission and this must have been approved and a visa endorsed in your passport before you attempt to travel to the United Kingdom.
If you are a student who successfully completes a degree course while in the UK, you may be able to switch into work permit approved employment, if you meet the requirements.
Can I Extend my Stay as a Student?
If you enter the UK with a student or prospective student visa, or you want to study on a course at degree level or higher, you can apply for an extension of stay to the Immigration and Nationality Directorate, which is a part of the Home Office. The Immigration and Nationality Directorate will charge you a fee for any extension to your stay.
The maximum period of time that a student can stay in the UK on short courses one after the other, below degree level, is two years. If you did not enter the UK with a student or prospective student visa or are not studying on a degree-level course or higher, you will not be allowed to extend your stay.
Can I take Employment?
You can take part-time or holiday work, but you must not:
- work for more than 20 hours per week during term time unless your placement is part of your studies and has been agreed with your education institution and leads to a degree or qualification awarded by a nationally recognised examining body
- do business, be self-employed or provide services as a professional sportsperson or entertainer
- work full-time in a permanent job.
If you are coming to the UK as a student for six months or less, you must ask the entry clearance officer for permission to work.
Can I Switch to Work Permit Employment when I am in the UK ?
You may be able to switch if:
- you have completed a recognised degree course at either a UK publicly funded institution of further or higher education, or an approved private education institution that has satisfactory records of enrolment and attendance
- you hold a valid work permit for employment
- you have the written consent of any government or agency that is sponsoring you
- you have not broken immigration law.