It is important to be as prepared as possible before leaving your home country to come and study in the UK.
Jelena Culum, head of the international visa office at the University of Law, offers some top tips to help students thinking about applying for a Tier 4 visa to the UK.
Receiving your Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) number
When your offer of a place at university becomes unconditional, your university will email you a CAS statement.
The CAS statement includes your CAS reference number and other extremely important information such as the institution Tier 4 sponsor licence number, address and your details including fees paid. All the information in the CAS statement needs to be copied into your Tier 4 application.
Make sure that the information in your CAS is correct. If there are any errors, contact your institution as soon as possible.
Although CAS numbers are valid for six months, you cannot use your CAS to apply for a visa more than three months before the start date of your course. However, do not leave it until last minute. The usual visa processing time is 4 weeks but sometimes it takes longer. There is always a huge number of applications during the summer, so make sure you submit your application in time.
We recommend that you arrive at least 2-3 days before your course starts. However, the sooner you arrive, the more time you will have to settle in.
Documents you need for your Tier 4 application
As you make preparations for your visa application, please bear in mind that any fee or accommodation pre-payments to the university will need to clear in the university’s bank account and be receipted in order for them to be reflected in your CAS.
Students from some countries are required to provide a medical certificate confirming that they are clear of infectious tuberculosis (TB).
You can check the information on the UKVI website to find out if nationals of your country are required to obtain a certificate and, if so, to obtain details of the clinics and fee in your country.
If you are asked to go for an interview and you cannot show that your English language ability is at the correct level, your entry clearance application may be refused. You can be asked to participate in an interview, either in person or by telephone.
Employment during your studies
As a Tier 4 student studying a degree-level programme at the higher education institution, you are permitted to work for a maximum of 20 hours a week during term-time and full-time during holidays. Master's students cannot work full-time during the summer as this is classed as term-time. PhD students must agree any periods of vacation with their supervisors in advance.
Good luck with your application and we look forward to welcoming you to studying in the UK soon!
Information for international students wishing to study at The University of Law can be found on our website. Alternatively, please e-mail The University of Law’s dedicated International Visa Office at firstname.lastname@example.org
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