International

From outside the UK

Information to help you through the immigration and visa application process

The Curve

When should I start my visa application?

If you are applying from outside the UK, you can apply online for a Tier 4 (General) student visa. This category is for students coming to the UK for post-16 education with an unconditional offer of a place on a course with a licensed Tier 4 sponsor.

You must ensure you apply with enough time to arrive in the UK before your course begins and be available to attend the International Welcome and Orientation Programme for all new international and EU students.

Please note that you must not make your Tier 4 visa application more than three months before the start of your course, before you are issued with a CAS from the International Compliance Team, or before you meet the other immigration requirements and have all of the required ORIGINAL supporting documents in your possession.

You will usually get a decision on your visa within 3 weeks; however, some countries offer a priority visa service for an additional fee. You will need to check your visa application centre website for information on available priority services in your country: www.gov.uk/find-a-visa-application-centre.

Where should I start my visa application?

In most cases, you must complete the Tier 4 (General) student application form online using the link below. You must first set up an account online and complete the application form in English. You can start the process via the link below:

https://visas-immigration.service.gov.uk/apply-visa-type/tier4

You should enter the name of the country in which you are making your application. You must then confirm that you are able to attend an appointment at one of the visa application centres listed. You will then be invited to begin the online application process.

If you require any assistance in the process, please contact the International Student Advisor on International@tees.ac.uk.

Alternatively, you can contact UKVI and receive a reply within 24 hours in a range of languages via their International Enquiry Service. For details visit www.gov.uk/contact-ukvi-outside-uk . Please note that British Embassies and Consulates cannot answer visa questions.

What do I need for my visa application?

  • A valid CAS (you can obtain this from the International Compliance Team).
  • A completed online application form (you can receive assistance with this from the International Student Advisor).
  • Your/ your dependants (if applicable) passport and any previous passports used to travel to the UK.
  • Your/ your dependants (if applicable) BRP card/s and any previous BRP card/s.
  • Your/ your dependants (if applicable) police registration certificate (if you have previously studied in the UK and it was a requirement of your visa to have one). Please make sure that this is updated with correct marital status, address, passport and visa details.
  • TB Certificate (if applicable)
    https://www.gov.uk/tb-test-visa/overview
  • One passport sized colour photo, taken within the last month, which meets the Home Office requirements. Photos must be professionally printed and should be 45mm high by 35mm wide. The measurement from the crown of your head to your chin must be between 29-34mm).https://www.gov.uk/photos-for-passports
  • Financial documents that prove you have the required funds available to you. You will need to demonstrate maintenance for living costs PLUS any unpaid course tuition fees listed on your new CAS for the required period and in the required format. For more details see the 'Maintenance' section.
    See also the Tier 4 Policy Guidance:
    https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-on-application-for-uk-visa-as-tier-4-student
  • A valid ATAS certificate (if applicable). Students applying for postgraduate study in certain sensitive subjects, knowledge of which could be used in programmes to develop weapons of mass destruction or their means of delivery will need to apply for an ATAS certificate. You need to apply for this before your receive your CAS (if required) and you should allow at least 20 working days. 
    https://www.gov.uk/academic-technology-approval-scheme
  • You will need to know what evidence your Tier 4 sponsor (Teesside University) has included on your CAS so that you can include it with your supporting documents. You must get this information from your Tier 4 sponsor before you make your application. This will be sent to you via email from the International Compliance Team with your CAS. This may include certificates and transcripts of your qualifications and evidence of your English language ability.

    Please note: If a document is not in English the original must be accompanied by a fully certified translation by a professional translator/ translation company. 

    Your translation must include:
    - details of the translator/ translation company’s credentials;
    - a statement confirming that it is an accurate translation of the original document
    - the translator/ translation company’s contact details;
    - the date and original signature of the translator or an authorised official of the translation company.
  • For students applying with dependants, PLEASE ENSURE YOU SEEK ADVICE FROM AN INTERNATIONAL STUDENT ADVISOR TO RECEIVE INDIVIDUAL ADVICE IN THIS REGARD. 

    See also the PBS Dependant Policy Guidance: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-for-dependants-of-uk-visa-applicants-tiers-1-2-4-5
  • You will need to be in a position to pay the Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS) for yourself and for any dependants. The Immigration Healthcare Surcharge was introduced in April 2015. This charge relates to the UK National Health Service (NHS). The Immigration Health Surcharge is currently £150.00 per year per person.

    https://www.gov.uk/healthcare-immigration-application/how-much-pay
  • You will need to be in a position to pay the visa application fee of £348.00 (Standard Service) plus £348.00.00 for each dependant applying at the same time as you. Priority and Premium Service is available at an additional cost.

 

Maintenance

You must show that you have money for living costs for each month (£1015.00 per month) of your course up to a maximum of 9 months. The total living costs you must demonstrate should be based on the course dates listed on your new CAS, and be up to a maximum of 9 months (£9135.00). You must also show any unpaid course tuition fees listed on your new CAS for the required period and in the required format.

If you are permitted to bring dependants with you to the UK, each dependant must show that they have £680.00 for each month of immigration permission you have been granted (if your dependants are applying after you have received your permission) or will be granted (if your dependants are applying at the same time as you). This is up to a maximum of 9 months (£6120.00). If you are unsure if you can include a dependant in your application, please contact International@tees.ac.uk.

Please note: If you are using a personal bank or building society statement, this money will need to have been held in your bank account for a consecutive 28 day period on the date of your application. The evidence that you provide must be dated within 31 days of the date of your application.

Additional Information
You can provide evidence that you have enough money to cover your living costs and tuition fees in the following ways:

  • cash funds in the bank (this includes savings accounts and current accounts even when notice must be given); or
  • as a loan letter (the loan must be provided by your national government, state or regional government, or by a government sponsored student loan company or be part of an academic or educational loans scheme); or
  • official financial government sponsorship available to you.

Other accounts or financial instruments such as shares, bonds, overdrafts, credit cards and pension funds are NOT acceptable.

If you want to use a joint account as proof of your money, you must be named on the account along with one or more other person, except where you are using a joint account in the name of your parents or legal guardians.

The money you show us must be for your use for studying and living in the UK. The full amount of this money, held within the required format, must continue to be available to you after your application is made, except for any money you have to pay for course fees and living costs. For example, you should retain the full amount of money you have shown in your bank account, minus the balance you have paid for your course fees.

Your personal bank statement must show:

  • your name or your parent/ legal guardian’s name and
  • the account number; and
  • the financial institution’s name and logo; and
  • the amount of money available

Ad hoc bank statements printed on the bank’s letterhead are acceptable as evidence (this excludes mini-statements from cash points).

If you wish to submit electronic bank statements these must contain all of the details listed above. In addition, you will need to provide a supporting letter from your bank on company headed paper, confirming the authenticity of the statements provided.

Alternatively an electronic bank statement bearing the official stamp of the bank in question will be accepted. This stamp must appear on every page of the statement.

Where your funds are in a currency other than pound sterling, the amount considered will be based on the exchange rate for the relevant currency on the date of application published on www.oanda.com. You should print out a currency conversion as at the date you submit your application using the lowest balance held within the nominated 28-day period.

Using funds help in a parent(s) / legal guardian(s) account

If you are using cash funds in the bank, you can use money held in an account owned by you or your parents. If you are using funds held by your parents, you will need to show that you are related to them and must provide one of the following:

  • your birth certificate showing the names of your parent(s)/ legal guardian(s); or
  • your certificate of adoption showing the names of both parents(s) or legal guardian(s); or
  • a Court document naming your legal guardian(s). The copy used must be the original legal document or a notarised copy.

If you are relying on money held by your parents(s)/legal guardian(s), you must also show that your parent(s)/legal guardian have given their permission for you to use this money. You must provide: a letter from your parent(s) or legal guardian(s). The letter must confirm:

  • the relationship between you and your parent(s) or legal guardian(s); and
  • that your parent(s) or legal guardian(s) have given their consent to you using their funds to study in the UK.

Using a loan letter

If you are going to use a loan letter, the loan letter must be from a regulated financial institution and must be dated no more than 6 months before the date of your application. The letter must be the original and must show:

  • your name
  • and the date of the letter;
  • and the financial institution name and logo;
  • the money available as a loan;
  • that the loan is provided by your national government, their state or regional government, a government sponsored student loan company or is part of an academic or educational loans scheme.

The financial institution must be regulated by either the Financial Conduct Authority, the Prudential Regulatory Authority or, in the case of overseas accounts, by the home regulator (the official regulatory body for the country the financial institution is in and where the money is held) for the purpose of student loans.

You cannot use a loan held in the name of your parent(s) or legal guardian(s) as evidence of money held by you.

There must be no conditions placed on the release of loan funds to you other than your Tier 4 application being successful.

If you are applying from overseas, the loan funds must be available to you before you travel to the UK, with only two exceptions:

  • the loan is an academic or student loan from your country’s national government and it will be released to you on or before arrival in the UK, or
  • the loan funds are or will be paid directly to your Tier 4 sponsor before you travel to the UK and the living costs portion of the loan will be released to you on or before your arrival in the UK


Where your funds are in a currency other than pound sterling, the amount considered will be based on the exchange rate for the relevant currency on the date of application published on http://www.oanda.com.


Using a letter to prove Official Financial Sponsorship

If you are being given Official Financial Sponsorship, you must provide a letter of confirmation from your Official Financial Sponsor on official letter-headed paper or stationery of the organisation of the official financial sponsor which must have the official stamp of that organisation on it.
You can receive official financial sponsorship from Her Majesty’s Government, your home government, the British Council or any international organisation, international company, university or UK independent school. Your official financial sponsor must have the funds to support you financially whilst you are studying in the UK and they must have the capacity to move, or have experience of moving, funds across international borders.

The letter of confirmation from your Official Financial Sponsor should be on official letter-headed paper or stationery of the organisation of the official financial sponsor that must have the official stamp of that organisation on it. The letter must show:

  • your name
  • the name and contact details of your official financial sponsor;
  • the date of the letter;
  • the length of your sponsorship; and
  • the amount of money the sponsor is giving to you or a statement that your official financial sponsor will cover all of your fees and living costs.

If you are being given Official Financial Sponsorship that will cover all of your fees and living costs, you will not be required to submit bank statements to evidence maintenance funds.

If your financial sponsor is only covering some of your course fees or living costs, you must show that you have the rest of the money needed.

Full details can be found using the links below:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-on-application-for-uk-visa-as-tier-4-student
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-for-dependants-of-uk-visa-applicants-tiers-1-2-4-5

 

What happens next?

  • You should complete the application form in English and sign the declaration
  • You should print the application form/ supporting documents cover sheet.
  • You will need to arrange a suitable BRP collection location in the UK within 10 days of your arrival. The closest BRP collection location to Teesside University is: Middlesbrough Post Office, 17 - 19 Centre Mall, Cleveland Centre, Middlesbrough. TS1 2NR.
  • You will need to book an appointment at a visa application centre.
  • You will need to pay your Immigration Health Surcharge fee online if applicable
  • You should pay your application fee for the service you require.
  • You will need to prepare your ORIGINAL supporting documents and any translations if not in English to take with you to your appointment.
  • You should ensure that you read the Tier 4 Policy Guidance before you make your application and the Tier 4 PBS Dependant Policy Guidance if applicable.
  • Once you receive a decision on your application, this should be sent to the International Compliance Team immediately. International.Compliance@tees.ac.uk
 
 
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