Loughborough University
Leicestershire, UK
LE11 3TU
+44 (0)1509 263171
Loughborough University

International Student Advice and Support

Visa Advice

Applying for a student visa from outside the UK

Due to the impact of Covid-19, UKVI have introduced a number of concessions summarised on our Covid-19 webpage. You should consult these as well as the information below.

The Student Advice and Support Service (SASS) provides advice and support to all prospective and current international students who need to apply for Student permission outside the UK. Our general guide covers the most common issues but if you need specific advice about your circumstances our advisers can guide you on your options before you complete your online application.

If you have dependants who also need to apply for further permission to remain in the UK, please also see our separate guide.

How do I apply for a visa?

UK Visas and Immigration give an overview of the visa application process here. Virtually all applications are made on-line via the UKVI website. UKVI also give detailed information on how it considers applications within its caseworker guidance; we recommend you read the parts relevant to your circumstances and use the links in our guide which provide more detail on specific issues.

When can I apply for a visa?

You will need a Confirmation of Acceptance of Studies (CAS) before you will be able to complete a visa application.  If you are a new student applying for a postgraduate taught programme you will likely need to pay a compulsory CAS deposit before your CAS is issued, there are exemptions for some students, please see the postgraduate taught offer guidance. You can be issued with a CAS up to six months before the start of your course. It is advisable to apply for your visa as early as you can to make sure you do not miss your course start date.

How long does it take to obtain a visa?

In general a decision should be made within 3 weeks of attending your visa appointment. During the summer the visa processing times can take longer.

In some countries a Visa Application Centre may offer services to ‘fast track’ the processing of your application for which there is an additional charge.

How much does it cost to apply for a visa?

The entry clearance (visa) application fee is £348 paid in local currency.

If you are required to have a TB test a separate test fee is charged which depends on location.

 The Immigration Health Surcharge is payable for any visa longer than 6 months. The charge is based on the maximum length of visa that could be granted as follows:

  • For each year and each part year between 6 - 12 months - £470 
  • For each part year less than 6 months - £235

Depending on the length and type of course, Student permission may be issued for up to one month before studies commence and 4 months beyond the end of studies, for example: 

Type of Course

Length of studies on CAS

Length of visa

Health charge

BSc/BA

2 years 9 months

3 years 2 months

(3 x 470) + 235 = £1,645

MSc/MA

12 months

Up to 17 months

470 + 235 = £705

PhD

4 years

4 years 5 months

(4 x 470) + 235 = £2,115

The same fees and charges will also have to be paid for each family member applying for a dependant’s visa.

What funds do I need to prepare for my visa application?

Certain nationalities may not have to provide evidence of finances.  Although the online application will not request the evidence it is recommended to have it prepared and available in case it is later requested by the decision maker.

You should be prepared to show you have enough money for any outstanding tuition fees as stated on your CAS plus living expenses as explained in UKVI’s guidance on financial evidence. If you are self-funding you should keep at least the required amount in your account throughout a 28-day period which ends no earlier than 31 days before your visa application.

You should only submit your visa application if you are able to prove that you have the required funds in place, or your visa application may be refused.

If your visa is refused due to inadequate financial evidence, the University does not guarantee to issue a new CAS – the office that issued your CAS will require proof that you have put sufficient measures in place to ensure that your subsequent visa application will be successful.

  • The visa decision will be based on what tuition fees are still to be paid according to the information on your CAS. Standard tuition fees can be found within the programme information on the University's main website.
  • The CAS only needs to state the tuition fees that are due within the first year of your studies. If your course is longer than one year, you do not need to show you have the funds for the second or subsequent years.
  • If you have been awarded a fees scholarship or bursary, this will be deducted from the tuition fees before they are specified on your CAS. Otherwise a sponsor note can be added to the CAS to confirm the details.
  • If you have already paid some or all of your tuition fees (including a CAS deposit), this can be noted on your CAS. If you pay some or all of your tuition fees after receiving your CAS details please let the office that issued your CAS know and ask for the CAS to be updated. You do not need a new CAS.
  • The money you need to prepare for your living expenses depends on where you are studying and the length of your course but you never need to show more than 9 months living expenses. Most students studying at the main Loughborough campus will need to prepare £1,023 per month for up to 9 months (£9,207). If your main degree is to be taken at Loughborough University London you will need to prepare £1,334 per month for up to 9 months (£12,006)
  • If you have paid the University some or all of your accommodation charges, this can reduce the amount you need to show for your living expenses. UKVI rules only allow £1,334 to be recorded on your CAS and taken into account, even if you have paid more.

Some examples of how to calculate the Student ‘maintenance’ requirement: 

Your course Tuition fee You will need
MSc Management £23,200 23,200 + (9 x 1,023) = £32,407

MSc Digital Marketing at Loughborough University London

£25,500 25,500 + (9 x 1,334) = £37,506
BSc Computer Science £23,100 23,100 + (9 x 1,023) = £32,307

How do I demonstrate that I have the required funds?

Most self–funding students will rely on providing a bank statement which includes the following information:

  • The name of the account holder
  • The date of the statement
  • The bank’s name
  • The required balance throughout at least a 28-day period

If you are relying on funds in your parents’ bank account(s), you must supply your birth certificate or other acceptable evidence that you are related, plus a letter from your parent(s) to confirm your relationship and that the money can be used to fund your studies.

If you are funded through an educational loan UKVI will only take into account the following types of provider:

  • a government
  • a government sponsored student loan company
  • an academic or educational loans scheme which is provided by a financial institution regulated for the purpose of issuing student loans by either the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) or the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) or, in the case of an overseas loan, the official regulatory body for purpose of issuing student loans in the country in which the financial institution is located and where the money is held

 Further details on educational loans are given in the financial requirement caseworker guidance and the guidance on financial evidence.

You can rely on funds held in the name of a partner (e.g. spouse, civil partner or someone you have lived with for at least 2 years) provided your partner is also applying with you as your dependant or they already hold immigration permission to be in the UK.

You can rely on funds held overseas and in other currencies. UKVI check the sterling value of other currencies using the exchange rate at the date of the application on the OANDA website.

If you are funded by an ‘official financial sponsor’ as explained in the financial requirement caseworker guidance, you will need to provide a letter from your sponsor in the expected format. However, any official financial sponsorship from the University should be recorded on your CAS. If your sponsor is only paying for part of your costs, you may still need to prepare bank statements to show you have the necessary funds for any outstanding fees and/or living expenses.

What documents do I need to prepare for my visa application?

Some Visa Application Centre document checklists give generic information about documents that could be required for any type of visa application.  To avoid being misled please refer to the document checklist produced by your gov.uk online application and the information in this guide. Other types of evidence that may appear on general visa document lists are not required, for example a Student visa application does not depend on evidence of employment or accommodation in the UK.

The required documents will depend on your circumstances but could include:

  • Valid passport
  • Financial evidence, e.g. a bank statement showing the required amount of money.
  • English language evidence, if required e.g. A degree taught in English*
  • Certified professional translations of any documents that are not in English.
  • ATAS clearance certificate if required for certain engineering and technology subjects. Your initial offer and CAS will indicate whether your course requires ATAS clearance, further information is available here. You can apply for an ATAS clearance certificate online here.
  • TB certificate for students applying from certain countries.

Where relevant there is information on the expected format of evidence in the caseworker guidance,  guidance on financial evidencefinancial requirement caseworker guidance and English language assessment guidance

*If you meet the English language requirement by any of the following routes you should not need to include additional evidence of this within your visa application;

  • National of a majority English-speaking country
  • Previously satisfying the requirement (at CEFR B2) in an earlier visa application e.g. Tier 4
  • UKVI Secure English Language Test (SELT) as detailed on your CAS
  • Your CAS confirms assessment by the University e.g.’English language ability assessed and confirmed at CEFR Level B2 or higher in each of the four components of language learning ….  no documents are required to be submitted as evidence of this.’

For more details see the UKVI English language assessment guidance

As the University is a Higher Education Provider with a track record of compliance if your CAS is for study at bachelor’s degree level or above there should be no need for you to provide the academic evidence used to secure your offer or recorded on your CAS.

If you are aged under 18 at the time you submit your application you will need to provide a parental letter of consent in support of the application and proof of relationship, details are provided in the caseworker guidance.

Will I have to attend a visa interview?

UKVI may interview some students to check that they are genuine and not using the study visa route for some other purpose. The caseworker guidance gives further explanation. It would be wise to prepare in advance, so you are confident in answering questions about your plans to study in the UK. The questions might include:

  • What is the name of your university?
  • What is the name of your course of study? Do you know what modules/topics you will be studying as part of this course?
  • What are your reasons for wanting to study in the UK?
  • What are your reasons for choosing Loughborough University and the course?
  • What are your future career plans?
  • What are your accommodation arrangements in the UK?
  • How you can afford to pay for your studies?
  • Do you intend to work in the UK during your studies? If so, do you know how many hours you are permitted to work as a Student?
  • Have you ever studied in the UK or overseas before? If so, what did you study, did you complete the course; did you leave the country before your visa expired?

Where can I collect my Biometric Residence Permit (BRP)?

EEA and Swiss nationals who are coming to the UK from 1 January 2021 under the Student route will be able to apply using the ID Check app.  If you have a biometric passport and can use the app your immigration permission will be issued electronically and your status can be checked online.  You will not be issued a visa vignette in your passport or a BRP.

Biometric Residence Permits are issued to anyone else coming to the UK for more than 6 months. Your initial Student visa will be issued for 90 days to allow you to travel (a visa sticker or ‘vignette’ is placed in your passport for this purpose).  After arriving in the UK you must collect your BRP which confirms your full permission to stay longer. The visa application will ask if you have any contact details in the UK and details of where you are studying, a UK address is not necessary for a visa application but if you wish you can give the relevant University address below. 

Towards the end of the visa application you will be asked where you wish to collect your BRP from, the suggestions are based on the contact details you have given. You can collect your BRP from the Student Office at the Loughborough campus by selecting the ‘alternative location’ and enter the ACL code ‘2HE857’ – this option is available at the Loughborough campus only (including all pre- sessional students and their dependants), it is not possible to collect BRPs at the London campus. Otherwise BRPs may be collected from participating Post Offices, the details of the nearest to each University campus are as follows: 

Campus Address

Nearest Post Office for BRP Collection

Loughborough University Epinal Way Loughborough Leicestershire, LE11 3TU

Loughborough Post Office 10 High Street Loughborough Leicestershire, LE11 2PY

Loughborough University London 3 Lesney Avenue,The Broadcast Centre, Here East Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park Stratford, London, E20 3BS

Stratford Post Office 26 – 28 The Broadway Stratford. London E15 4QS

BRPs valid to 31 December 2024

Current BRP technology will only be valid to 31 December 2024. If your immigration permission is granted beyond this date the full duration will be recorded in the UKVI decision e-mail but your BRP will expire on 31 December 2024. UKVI explain:

If your BRP expires on 31 December 2024
You do not need to tell UKVI if your BRP expires on 31 December 2024 but you have leave to stay longer.
UKVI will update their information on how to update your BRP in early 2024. You do not need to do anything and your immigration status will not be affected.
 

We recommend you retain the UKVI decision e-mail as a record of the full length of your permission and that you provide a copy of it to Student Enquiries, the Doctoral College Office, or London Student Services as appropriate so that the immigration permission on your student record is accurate. We expect UKVI will provide further information in 2024.

What if I have further questions?

What if I have further questions?

If you have any questions about your offer or your CAS please contact the relevant office for your level of study:

 If you need specific advice about your visa application you can request an appointment via our online appointment request form, or by phoning +44 (0) 1509 222765. You can also email: advice@lboro.ac.uk

Student visa responsibilities

Student visa responsibilities

The Student visa route places numerous responsibilities on students and the University, please ensure you are aware and comply with these throughout your studies.

 

Our slides from the International Office webchat for prospective students, 17 November 2021:

 

The Student Advice and Support Service is authorised to provide immigration advice and services by an order made under section 84(4)(d) of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999 (The Immigration and Asylum Act 1999 (Part V Exemption: Educational Institutions and Health Sector Bodies) Order 2001 (Statutory Instrument 2001 No. 1403)). Should you have a complaint about the service you can use the Student Advice and Support Service's complaints procedure or you can use the OISC Complaints Scheme.