International students need a student visa to study in the UK. The student visa will allow one to live and study in the UK throughout their course. Many international students in the UK take a part-time job, work placement or internship alongside their studies. The hours and type of work they do will depend on the type of visa and the university or college that they apply for.
There are two types of student visas in the UK. The first one is the TIER 4(general) student visa.
This one is for students who are 16 or above and want to study at higher education level. After being accepted by a college or university they will be able to give the student a document called a Confirmation of Acceptance of Studies (CAS). The institution chosen by the student needs to be approved by the UK government as a ‘licensed Tier 4 sponsor’.
The second type is the SHORT-TERM study visa. This visa is available to students who want to join courses that are up to six months long or English language courses up to 11 months long. UK student visa applications are processed within 3 weeks (15 working days) of the completed application being submitted.
The documents required for the process are a valid passport, a recent photograph, a 'Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies’ (CAS) form from the course provider (college or university), proof of adequate English language skills, demonstrated by passing the SELT (the student will not need to provide this if they’re from an English-speaking country) and proof they have financial support throughout their stay in the UK.
The visa application process has quite a few steps. The first step is to check and confirm the qualifications needed and to get the documents ready. The second step is to apply online by registering and creating an account on the official UK Visa website. The student will then need to print and sign the completed form. The next step is to use the online appointment calendar to book an appointment at the visa application centre. On completion of the online application, the student will receive an email message containing their application number. The next step is to pay the application fee. There are 4 ways to pay.
Payment at Standard Chartered Bank, Demand draft from a nationalized or foreign bank, Payment at the visa application centre, or to simply Pay online using a card. Lastly, the student has to visit the visa application centre on the appointed date.
The UK Visa is a point-based visa system and it is essential for applicants to meet all the requirements of the Immigration Rules.