How to apply
Applying for a student visa
You will need a Tier 4 (General) student visa in order to study in the UK at the Leeds International Study Centre for progression to University of Leeds. Learn more about visas below.
Will I be eligible for a student visa?
There are three main requirements for those who want to study in the UK:
- You must have an offer of a place on a course at an approved higher education institution.
- You must provide evidence that you can afford your tuition fees and living expenses.
- You must be able to speak, read, write and understand English to a good level.
When should I apply for a visa?
You should make sure you apply early, to leave enough time for your application to be processed. You can apply up to three months before your course begins.
How long can I stay in the UK on a student visa?
In addition to the period of leave given to you to carry out your course of study, leave to remain will also be granted depending on your length of course. See section 5.66 in Tier 4 Sponsor Guidance document to find out more.
Can I get a job while on my student visa?
If you are a Tier 4 student, you are entitled to work during your pathway programme at the International Study Centre providing that your visa is granted on or after 1 August 2019.
The main purpose of the Tier 4 visa route is for students to come to the UK to study. Where a student is permitted to work, the intention is that this should be an opportunity to gain work experience in their field of study.. In most cases we expect this to be taking a part-time role for an established business/organisation (for example, a customer service role at a retailer) or as part of a work placement provided it is an integral and assessed part of your course.
A Tier 4 visa allows you to work for a maximum of 10 hours per week during term-time for an undergraduate level study or 20 hours per week during term-time for a postgraduate level study. This is the maximum hours in any one week, including paid or unpaid work and for one or more organisation. This cannot be averaged over a longer period. A 'week' is defined by the Home Office as a period of 7 days beginning with a Monday.
If allowed to work, students cannot:
- be employed as a doctor in training (except on a recognised foundation programme)
- be employed as a professional sportsperson (including a sports coach)
- be employed as an entertainer
- be self-employed (except where the student is awaiting a decision on an application they have made for leave to remain as a Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur
- engage in business activity
- fill a full-time, permanent vacancy (except on a recognised foundation programme or as a Student Union Sabbatical Officer).
If you stop studying before completing your course, you will no longer be entitled to work and will be in breach of your conditions of leave if found working.
The visa process
Visa applications in the UK work on a points system. If you collect enough points, you will be issued a visa. These are the steps you must follow:
- The first step is to apply for the programme of your choice at the International Study Centre, and receive an offer. This is worth 30 points.
- Next, you must send the requested documents to be checked by Admissions team or your Student Enrolment Adviser.
- You will then pay a deposit and CAS payment.
- You will be issued a CAS, which is worth a further 10 points. This means you can apply for your visa.
- You may be invited to a credibility interview.
- UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) will contact you about the outcome of your visa application.
Visa credibility interviews
You may be required to attend a credibility interview to ensure that you comply with the UK’s immigration rules. The purpose is for an Entry Clearance Officer (ECO) to establish that you are a genuine student. You need to show you are serious, and that you have good knowledge of your chosen university and course. Research in advance so that you are prepared for the interview. The process is designed to filter out people who might be planning to use a student visa to work or holiday in the UK.
Will I need an interview?
Whether or not you will be invited for a credibility interview depends on which country you are applying from. Applicants from the countries listed here will not require a credibility interview.
How will the interview happen?
Credibility interviews usually take place in your local Visa Application Centre, via video link with an interviewer based in the UK.
How should I prepare?
Make sure you have done some detailed research on the International Study Centre, including accommodation options, costs, and the local area. Also familiarise yourself with the content of your chosen course.
What questions will I be asked?
Below are some examples of questions you may be asked. Think carefully before answering, because your answers may raise concern with interviewers if they think you are not taking the process seriously.
Be honest, and avoid yes and no answers. Talk as naturally as possible; you do not want to look like you are repeating rehearsed answers.
What if my visa application is rejected?
If you receive a visa refusal, you have 28 days to submit an Administrative Review to the UKVI and challenge the decision made by the ECO. International Study Centre staff can help you with this process.
What else should I consider?
Before applying for a visa, it is important to be sure that studying in the UK is right for you. Be sure to check that entry requirements and tuition costs for the course you wish to study are suitable and attainable in your current situation.