Visa & Immigration
Getting a visa to study
Students with the following nationalities are classed as ‘Low Risk Nationals’ and are subject to different documentary requirements. This is called the differentiation arrangement and by taking part, you will have different document requirements for your Student visa application.
- Australia, Bahrain, Barbados, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei, Cambodia, Canada, Chile, China, the Dominican, Republic, Indonesia, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Malaysia, Mauritius, Mexico, New Zealand, Oman, Peru, Qatar, Serbia, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, United States of America
- Hong Kong (SAR) passport holders, Macao (SAR) passport holders, Taiwan passport holders (with residence card no. in passport) + British National Overseas passport holders
How to qualify
On your Student visa application form, you must select that you would like to take part in the ‘Differentiation Arrangement’. You must also be applying from your home country or the UK. If you hold dual nationality, you can qualify as long as you make your application from the UK or from the country which qualifies as Low Risk.
Student visa Application – Documents
As a Low Risk National taking part in the differentiation arrangement, you are not required to provide evidence of your qualifications or financial evidence with your Student visa application.
Documents you will need to provide:
- Your passport
- ATAS (if applicable)
- Police Registration Certificate (if applicable)
- If extending Student visa – A current BRP (Biometric Residence Permit} / Visa
UKVI can ask you at a later date to provide your qualifications and financial evidence so you should ensure that you still prepare these in advance of making your application. If your course is 12 months or longer, you must have £12,006 (£1,334 x 9 months maintenance) + Tuition fees for first year of study. This must be in yours or your parents/ legal guardians’ bank account for 28 consecutive days prior to the date you make your application.
If you are a Low Risk National and wish to take part in the differentiation arrangement, we do not recommend that you send in any financial evidence or proof of qualifications unless specifically asked to do so by UKVI. If you do and these documents do not meet the requirements, you are at risk of having your application refused. It is important that you prepare and have your documents ready, because UKVI can request these and will give you a period of time in which to present your documents, failure to do so will lead to a refusal and may make it difficult to apply for future entry to the UK.
What type of visa will I need?
- If you are coming to the UK for less than six months and do not plan to do an internship or voluntary work as part of your studies then you need a short-term study visa.
- If you are coming to the UK for more than six months, or less than six months but plan to undertake an internship or voluntary work as part of your studies then you will need a Student visa.