The basics
THE UK: Visa Guides

Canadian students applying for a UK student visa

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While studying in the UK offers an insight into a diverse cultural environment, before you can do so, you must consider whether or not you will need a UK student visa. This depends on the length of your stay, the course you will be studying and the age at which you submit your application. With our step-by-step guide on how to approach this, we can ensure that you are on the right track.

 

Which visa will I need?

If you’re planning on studying in the UK for six months or less, you won’t need a visa. All you will need, is to bring documents with you when crossing the border.

 

If your period of study in the UK will be longer than six months, you will need a visa, but the type you need depends on your individual circumstances.

 

If you’re coming to study a university or college course for more than 6 months, or an English Language course for more than 11 months, you will need a Student Visa.

 

But if you’re studying an English Language course for less than 11 months, you can apply for a Short-Term Student Visa.

 

Those of you who are under 18, though, will need to apply for a Child Student Visa.

All applications can be made here: https://www.gov.uk/apply-uk-visa

 

What documents do I need to provide?

For those of you who do not need a visa, you will need to provide these documents when crossing the border. For those of you who do, you will need to provide these documents as part of your application. They are:

  • A current passport or other valid form of travel documentation
  • 1 passport-sized colour photograph with your name written on the reverse side, and fingerprints taken at a Visa Application Centre (these can be found across Canada)
  • Proof that you are able to fund yourself and pay for your studies
  • Proof of parental or other legal guardian consent, if you are under 18

Unless you are applying for a visa, this is all of the information you will need.

 

When do I need to apply?

You can apply for your visa 3 months before the start of your course. You will generally get a decision within 3 weeks.

 

When will I be able to go to the UK?

You can arrive up to 1 week before the beginning of your course, if the duration of the course is less than 6 months. If it is more, you can arrive up to 1 month before the course begins.

 

Applying for a Tier 4 Student Visa

If you meet the description of someone who will need a Student Visa, here is a breakdown of everything that you will need to know before applying.

You can apply for a Tier 4 Student Visa to study in the UK if you are 16 or older and you:

  • Have been offered a place by your institution
  • Can speak, read, write and understand English
  • Have enough money to support yourself and pay for your course
  • Meet the other eligibility requirements

How much does it cost?

The Student Visa cost £322, but you will also need to pay a healthcare surcharge. Details of this can be found here. https://www.gov.uk/healthcare-immigration-application/pay

 

Applying for a Short-Term Student Visa

If you meet the description of someone who will need a Short-Term Student Visa, this is all you will need to know.

You can apply for the visa if:

  • You are doing a short-course of study in the UK
  • You meet the other eligibility requirements

How much does it cost?

The cost of the Short-Term Student Visa differs depending on the length of your planned stay. If you would require a visa for 6 months, the cost is £85. If 11 months, the cost is £162.

 

Applying for a Child Student Visa

Those of you who are under 18 will need to apply for a Tier 4 (Child) Student Visa. You can apply for this if you are aged 4-17 years old and if you:

  • Have been offered an unconditional place on your desired course
  • Have parental or other legal guardian consent
  • Are able to pay for the course and living costs
  • Meet the other eligibility requirements

 

How much does it cost?

The Child Student Visa costs £322, but you will also need to pay a healthcare surcharge. Details of this can be found here. https://www.gov.uk/healthcare-immigration-application/pay

 

How long can I stay for?

If you are under 16 years old when you apply, you can stay for the duration of the course (up to six years), plus up to four months afterwards. If you apply when you are 16 or 17 years old, though, this changes. You can stay for the duration of the course (up to 3 years), plus up to 4 months afterwards.

Now that you know what you will need, why not start planning your application now?

 

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About Author

Phoebe recently graduated with a First Class Honours degree in English Literature from Canterbury Christchurch University. She has written for various websites and print publications including music magazine, NME. Phoebe loves music, gaming, reading and writing.

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