Studying in the UK
Thousands of international students from around the world Study in the UK each year. This makes studying in the UK the number one choice and hub for international students in Europe and number two in the world. A renowned education and good career perspective are what British education will give you and more while studying in the UK. The UK is the second most popular study destination for overseas students.
UK Study Visa Requirements in 2021 & New Rules…
The UK is one of the most popular study destinations for international students. However, getting a student visa to study in the UK can be a long route as well as time-consuming.
To make it easier for Indian students who wish to pursue higher education in the UK, there are new provisions that have already come into effect. These include faster processing times and streamlined application processes as well as an increased number of routes and possibilities for Indian students wanting to study in Britain.
The current eligibility criteria for the UK student visa requirements are:
- The applicant must be of 16 years of age or older
- The candidate must have enough funds to pay the course fee as well as supporting themselves during their stay
- The applicant must have an offer from an approved educational institution in the UK
- The candidate must be at a certain proficiency in the English language test results
The documents required for the student visa are:
- Valid passport
- Visa application form
- Passport-sized recent photograph
- Proof that you have paid the full visa fee/visa application fee
- Proof of funds/financial evidence
- Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS)
- Valid Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS) certificate
- Medical test results for tuberculosis
- Payment of the Immigration Healthcare Surcharge (IHS)
- Written agreement from financial sponsor (in case of funding your degree through sponsorship)
- Police clearance certificate
However, if you are under the age of 18 years, some additional documents are needed. For instance:
- Proof of consent from parents or a legal guardian
- Evidence of real/mutual relationship with parents or legal guardian
- Copy of birth certificate or any government document that displays the names of the individual’s parents
- Tuberculosis-Test-Results are also a requirement
- The main medical examination that you are required to get tested for is tuberculosis. It is required if you intend to stay in the UK for more than the duration of six months. The test is a must for visa applicants from the specified list of countries on the government website.
- In addition, you have to take a chest x-ray test. However, if the results are uncertain, then you have to provide a sputum sample.
Only approved clinicians can perform these tests on the individual.
If the results are in fact negative for tuberculosis, you will get a certificate proving this. The certificate will only have validity for six months from the date of the test.
- Proof of funds for the duration of your study
The sufficient funds that are required from you are £1,265.00 to support your living expenses as well as paying the UK’s tuition fees.
In the Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS), the funds required are:
- £1,015 per month going towards living costs if your course is outside London
- £1,265 per month if your studies are in London
- £2,530 for the course in London (if you are on the Doctorate Extension Scheme)
- £2,030 for the course outside London (if you are on the Doctorate Extension Scheme)
Please take into consideration that proof of funds are not required if:
- You had a visa previously accepted by the UK
- The visa must have been for a minimum of the duration of 12 months
- Your country is listed under the ‘differential evidence requirement’
- Your application specifically states you as a student union sabbatical officer
Immigration Healthcare Surcharge (also known as IHS)
You must pay the Immigration Healthcare Surcharge (IHS) upon doing your studies in the UK. It is mainly for those who want to stay in the UK for longer than the duration of six months.
If you are granted leave for less than the duration of six months, you need to pay half the annual amount. If you are granted leave for more than the duration of six months, you will be required to pay the full yearly amount.
Once this payment has been completed you can use the NHS (National Health Service) after you have paid the amount required from the IHS. But, you will still have to pay for your own dental treatments, prescriptions, assisted conception, eye tests, and so forth.
What is the Graduate Route visa?
International students that are set to graduate in the summer of 2021 onwards will be able to remain in the country for the duration of 2 years with the Graduate Route Visa. This new rule applies to both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in 2021 moving forward. Graduate Route visa applications are now open for applications.
You don’t need to be sponsored by an employer to be eligible for the graduate route visa, so you don’t need to already have a job when you apply for this. There are also no restrictions on the type of job you can do during these 2 years and no minimum salary requirements. You could look for roles that are related to your degree, or gain experience working in other areas from a career perspective.
The new route is actually flexible. There is no requirement to be employed continuously in the same job as stated on the Graduate Route visa, so if you decide to take some time out, or change jobs, it won’t count against you or fall into any consequences.
However, the Graduate Route differs for PhD students. For instance, you will have the opportunity to work in the UK for up to 3 years after finishing your doctoral degree.
The Graduate Route visa is part of the government’s aim to increase opportunities for international graduates in the UK and bring around the sum of 600,000 students from around the world into the country’s universities by the year of 2030. This is part of the UK’s commitment to welcoming students globally and creating a plethora of opportunities for them to boost their career prospects with international education.
How to get a PR (permanent residence) in the UK after studying?
The majority of international students wanting to study in the UK question if it is possible to get a PR in the UK after studying. It is possible if you fulfill certain criterias. The process has been simplified into 5 steps brought to you by the Smart Group .
Step 1: Get accepted into Universities within the UK
To get PR in the UK, the first step will be to get admission into a UK University.
Different universities have different eligibility criteria and requirements. But some of the common requirements entail:
- All the mark sheets of previous education.
- The English Language Proficiency requirement
- Statement of Purpose
- Letter of Recommendation
- Certificates of extracurricular activities
Step 2: Get a Student Visa in the UK
The application process for a student visa for the UK is not so complicated. A Tier 4 student visa is the longest stay visa And will also help you to get permanent residence in the UK. It is always advised to apply for it at least 3 months prior to the course starting. We have provided the list of documents you will have to submit :
- A valid passport Completed visa application Tier 4 student Visa Application
- Latest Passport photographs
- Valid evidence to prove that you can support yourself financially during your studies
- CAS(Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies) form provided by your university
- Tuberculosis test results
- A proof of English language proficiency and capability
Any other document required by the university that you’re going to study in.
The Student visa application fee for the UK is £330. The healthcare charge is around £150 each year which checks the grounds of your medical fitness. It is the most important part or step in getting a permanent residence in the UK for international students.
Step 3: Work during your Studies in the UK
Overseas students studying in the UK are allowed to work part-time in the UK. Students that require a Tier-4 visa can work for up to 20 hours per week during term-time and full-time during term-time holidays. But there are some requirements you need to follow to work in the UK while studying. There will be a lot of job opportunities around you in the UK which includes:
- Student Support officer
- Sales assistant
- Personal Assistant
- Physiotherapy assistant
- Admission Officer
- Facilities Assistant
- Finance Assistant
- Social Media Assistant
- Personal Tutor
- Graphic designer
- Software Developer Intern
- Research Assistant
- IT assistant
- Fitness instructor
Step 4: Getting Employed
Gaining a good job is a good option for staying in the UK after studying. After completion of your degree, the UK welcomes wholeheartedly the most talented international to work. Students can apply for a work permit after studying in the UK. International students have a huge benefit in the form of a 2 years’ Post Student Work Visa also known as PSW.
However, it must be taken into consideration that permanent employment in the UK is only available to tier-2 visa holders. International Students can apply for the Tier-2 visa once they complete their whole study program. A UK Tier 2 visa is a work visa that allows the visa holder to work within the UK. Once the students receive a tier-2 visa, they can apply for permanent employment.
Step 5: Apply for a PR in the UK
You can apply for a permanent residence card in the UK after completing 5 years of your graduate job. To become a permanent resident, the applicant should get the Indefinite leave to remain Visa also known as ILR. If you entail a full-time job, a good code of conduct, and no criminal record this will in fact help in securing the ILR visa within the UK.
You are also required to pass the test of Life in the UK as well as a recognized English Language proficiency test. The process of obtaining an ILR visa can take a maximum time of 6 months.
For the ILR the following details are collected for your application:
- A current passport
- 2 passport size colour photographs
- Digital prints of all the 10 fingers
- Date and Place of Birth
- Present Immigration Status
- Present Studying or Working Status
UK permanent residence for Indian and other international students is possible if you fulfill all the requirements as mentioned above. It is a golden chance for international students to switch their life permanently. Study in the UK and reach up to receiving the permanent resident card.
Why Do International Students Choose to Study in the UK?
1. Top Universities in the UK
The United Kingdom is home to acclaimed universities around the world. Universities like Oxford, Cambridge and UCL are part of their own league. 76 of the universities from the UK feature in the official QS University Rankings for the world. Below are the top universities of the UK:
- The University of Oxford, Ranked at 5th
- The University of Cambridge, Ranked at 6th
- Imperial College London, Ranked at 8th
- UCL, Ranked at 10th
- The University of Edinburgh, Ranked at 18th
2. Courses to Study
There are a number of opportunities for students to choose what to study. There is a wide range of courses available in the top ranked universities from humanities to Engineering and computer science all the way to social studies. Below are the most popular courses from UK universities for international students:
- Arts and Humanities
- Engineering and Technology
- Life Science and Medical Degrees
- Social Sciences
- Natural Sciences
Arts and Humanities, and Engineering and Technology, Oxford and Cambridge are ranked at the top in the world for these particular degrees. They also offer tremendous research facilities to international students.
3. Top notch Education
One of the biggest benefits for international students in the UK is the length and possibilities of the courses offered. The courses in the UK are shorter in length in comparison to others. The majority of Masters in the UK are typically one-year courses, and that means you will graduate a lot quicker. As for the quality of education, the universities are some of the world’s most prestigious and renowned.
4. Rewarding Education
Shorter courses mean fewer tuition fees for the course and lesser living expenses for a year in comparison to other study destinations. Therefore, on average, the overall cost will be less than in countries like Australia and the USA. Compared to the other English-speaking countries like the USA and Australia, the Masters in the UK and study in the UK cost less than the Master’s courses in the USA for instance.
5. Scholarships to Study in the UK
Scholarships are either need-based or merit-based, and they aid international students with a waiver in the tuition fees or financial aid that an individual may be facing.
The help of fully paid scholarships can support the study of an individual in the country. Fully paid scholarships can cover tuition fees, travel costs, living expenses, etc.
6. Life Off-Campus
For the students who are interested in extracurricular activities, the UK provides development and grows a student’s personal and work life. The courses blend perfectly with the activities and vocational skills along with academics to help the natural growth of students. There is a life for anyone on campus be it sports clubs and gyms or the drama societies, there is something for everyone.
7. Work and Study in the UK
As discussed earlier, work is important to support your life in the UK. You will start earning early as courses are shorter in length and the UK government allows 20 hours to work when you Study in the UK during the terms, and full time during term breaks.
9. Health Benefits
The National Health Scheme offers free or sponsored treatment for a time of a half year or more to international students. In addition to this, private/non-supported colleges and Universities in the UK also offer medical advantages to their fellow students.
10. Better your English
While studying in the UK you have the perfect chance to enhance your English dialect. In the UK you will find that people speak English in their day-to-day conversations. While studying in the UK you have to speak in English in order to communicate with them and in this way your language skills will improve and it will be an incredible skill when going abroad for future prospects.
Many students are captivated by the excitement about the upcoming experience of studying and venturing out in the UK and often pay less importance to their packing list, but as soon as they step off the plane they can get disappointed. So here we are presenting the checklist for studying abroad in the UK.
The Checklist you need to do before going to study in the UK;
Documents Needed To Travel To UK
The most important thing to include in the packing list for international students going to study in the United Kingdom is to firstly pack all essential documents. Also, have photocopies of all the important documents too in case anything goes missing or lost. You will be required to fulfil some of the formalities in the UK as well after you land in the UK. Here is the list of documents you may require on the journey to the UK.
- Passport size photos
- Letter of Recommendation
- University Documents
- Exam Certificate
- Bank Account Details
- Address Book and email contacts
- A map of UK
- Room Insurance
- Accommodation Contract
- Enrollment confirmation from the university
Also, packing the right kind and the right amount of clothes can be a tough job especially if it is your first time here. You can also carry some party wear and day-to-day clothing as there will be a number of parties, college events where you might need them if spontaneous. Here is a list of some essentials, you might need to pack:
- Bathroom and Hand Towel Set
Coats & Jackets
Shirt and tie for any smart-casual events
Belt for jeans
Suits for any special event
Traditional dress for festivals
The requirement for kitchen items largely depends on the type of accommodation you choose while studying in the UK. If you are choosing self-catered accommodation, then you will require some kitchen utensils. Here are some things that you can carry to the UK from back home;
A pair of scissor
There are many local shops and stores too in the UK in case you decide not to bring anything or forget.
In this technological world, almost everything depends on technology in this modern day. You will require a few electronic items in the UK that may differ from back home. It is important that you should carry all these electrical items carefully to avoid any kind of physical damage. Here is the list of electronic items which you may require in your suitcase:
- Mobile Phone with charger
Laptop with charger
A headphone with a mic
Traveling to UK Checklist For International Students: Miscellaneous items
According to your need, you would require some other items as well for the UK. There are some room fresheners, some hygiene products, beauty essentials, etc. Below is a list of other items you can include in your list to pack;
- Coat Hangers
Beauty and skin essentials
Small sewing kit
Purse or wallet
Office supplies like paper, pen, folder, etc
As you have read this article on what to prepare while coming to the UK to study, your packing will be as smooth as possible. Also if there is anything else which is important for your routine in the UK, medicines, etc should also be included in your suitcase. You should also carry local currency with you but not too much. Before going to the airport check all your luggage before you start your journey.
We hope that this blog brought to you by Smart Group education ltd helped you with what you were looking for and everything entailing what it is like to study in the UK.
Let’s have a quick last recap at the main2 UK study Visa Requirements in 2021:
- A valid passport (original)
- A passport-sized photograph meeting requirements
- Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS)
- Offer from an Educational Institution
- Proficiency in the English Language
- Proof of Financial ability
- Evidence of Qualifications
- Tuberculosis Test Results
- Immigration Healthcare Surcharge (IHS)
With the UK’s new points-based immigration put in place, there is a lot of confusion that new students are going through so it is always important to keep up to date before your travels.
What if I have been studying online back home?
Many universities switched to digital learning through various platforms in the early part of 2020, due to the coronavirus pandemic. As a result lots of international students also returned to their home countries as there was no need to stay on campus.
Now, all students who began their studies in either Autumn 2020 or Spring 2021 need to arrive in the UK by 27 September 2021 to qualify for the visa application.
You will also need to complete the final semester of your degree while in the UK.
I plan to start studying online this Autumn — can I still apply for this visa?
Although most UK universities are now open for one-to-one learning, many are still offering digital alternatives for students who aren’t able to travel to the country for the start of the new academic year in September 2021. However, you will still have the chance to apply for a new visa… if you start your studies online in Autumn 2021, you will be eligible to apply for this particular visa if you arrive in the UK by 6 April 2022 latest.