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Facing culture shock

While usually temporary, culture shock is common among international students arriving in the UK. You will notice differences between the way things are done and what you are used to at home. These in...
06/01/2017 15:25:00

Studying in the UK, how does it differ from home?

When you get to the UK as an international student, studying may seem very different to studying at home. Depending on what you’re studying, what level you’re studying at and where you&r...
06/01/2017 11:19:00

Sponsor duties

All Tier 4 sponsors have specific duties they must undertake. These duties are outlined in document 2 of the Home Office's guidance for Tier 4 sponsors. Your Tier 4 sponsor must provide information ...
05/01/2017 16:08:00

Good practice

05/01/2017 15:39:00

Our codes

All our members subscribe to the UKCISA Code of Practice  This outlines the values and practices of what we expect from our members and references other relevant codes. The UKCISA Code of Ethics...
05/01/2017 14:52:00

Changing Tier 4 sponsor

There is some limited flexibility to switch to a different Tier 4 sponsor but you must apply for permission from the Home Office first (unless your new course is supplementary to the course for which...
05/01/2017 13:26:00

Tier 4 conditions

Your Tier 4 immigration permission will be subject to certain conditions. It is very important that you abide by these conditions as failure to do so can have serious consequences for both your curren...
05/01/2017 12:42:00

Entering the UK: documents

EEA nationals The Home Office has confirmed on its website that citizens of EEA countries can travel to the UK using their national identity cards or passports.   Non-EEA family members ...
21/12/2016 17:11:00

Studying in the UK?

Study tips for international students in the UK Health and healthcare Working while studying in the UK Driving Facing culture shock in a new country Complaints about you...
16/12/2016 09:53:00

Avoid overstaying

Overstaying means allowing your visa, or BRP, to expire whilst you remain in the UK. Overstaying is a criminal offence. There is no 'grace period' within which you can lawfully overstay. If you submi...
14/12/2016 16:51:00

Before you start

If you want to come to the UK to study, you need to apply to the UK immigration authorities under Tier 4 of the Points Based System (PBS). Usually, you must meet the requirements of the Immigration Ru...
12/12/2016 15:46:00

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07/12/2016 15:13:00

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07/12/2016 15:07:00

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07/12/2016 13:06:00


Some Tier 4 (General) students can have family with them in the UK as their dependants. To find out who counts as a dependant, check 'Who is a dependant?' You can have dependants with you in the UK...
02/12/2016 10:42:00

Who is a dependant?

Your partner and your child can be your Tier 4 dependant. Your parent, brother, sister or other relative cannot. Your partner  'Partner' means Your husband or wife Your civ...
27/11/2016 14:25:00

Financial requirements

Each dependant must have a certain amount of money, held in a bank or building society account, or an account with an officially regulated financial institution. All dependants will need to have evide...
27/11/2016 14:21:00

Babies born in the UK

This information is about immigration matters for babies born in the UK to a Tier 4 student and their Tier 4 dependant partner.  If you are a Tier 4 student and you are pregnant, it is very impo...
27/11/2016 09:46:00

Turkish workers

Self-employment Turkish nationals have the option of setting up in self-employment in the UK under an Association Agreement between Turkey and the European Union. Applications to switch into this c...
22/11/2016 17:39:00

UK ancestry

The UK ancestry route allows you to take employment and to set up a business. It can lead to settlement after five years. You cannot switch into this immigration category from within the UK. You can...
22/11/2016 16:39:00

Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur

The Graduate Entrepreneur scheme is aimed at recent graduates, and postdoctoral researchers who have Tier 2 immigration permission, who have 'genuine and credible business ideas and entrepreneurial ...
22/11/2016 16:26:00

Tier 5 Youth Mobility

Under the Tier 5 (Youth Mobility Scheme), you can work in the UK for up to two years. This scheme is available to nationals of Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, Japan, Monaco, New Zealand, Republic of K...
18/11/2016 18:54:00

Cost of living

This varies, according to where in the UK you decide to study. London and other big cities are more expensive than other areas.  The institution where you choose to study will be able to advise y...
17/11/2016 15:15:00

Work experience, post-doc positions

After having studied certain subjects in the UK, you might still need to obtain relevant work experience in order to qualify in your chosen profession. This applies, for example, to medical profession...
15/11/2016 20:39:00

Working after studies

If you are coming to the end of your studies in the UK, you might be considering the possibility of staying on in the UK to work. This section of the website explains some of the schemes that are like...
15/11/2016 11:10:00

Tier 1 Entrepreneur

Unlike Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur), Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) requires funds that you must invest in a business in the UK. However, you do not need a sponsor or an endorsing body.
10/11/2016 20:50:00

Family members of British citizens

If you are a British citizen and have lived in another EEA country, you will be able to derive a right under EU law if you have had a genuine period of residence in another EEA country for longer than...
10/11/2016 16:10:00


There is no definition of ‘dependency’ in the EU directive or in the UK’s regulations which interpret the directive into national legislation. There have been several cases heard bef...
09/11/2016 13:45:00

Submitting your application

You complete and submit the form online, then you submit your supporting documents to the Home Office by post (a "standard" or "priority" application) or in person (a "premium" application).
11/10/2016 16:20:00

Short course maximum of 6 months

03/10/2016 16:39:00

Right of permanent residence

If you have resided lawfully for five years continuously you have acquired the ‘right of permanent residence’ in the UK, by virtue of the Citizens’ Directive (2004/38/EC). The UK's E...
29/09/2016 15:45:00

Remaining in the UK

29/09/2016 15:40:00

Exercising a right to reside

You can continue to stay in the UK after you have completed your studies if you are continuing to exercise a right to reside here. In order to do this, you must be either ‘self-sufficient’...
29/09/2016 15:38:00

Protecting your Tier 4 status

This section is for anyone who has, or who is applying for, Tier 4 leave. We say "Tier 4 leave" rather than "a Tier 4 visa" because your Tier 4 permission can be in the form of: an entry cleara...
27/09/2016 14:24:00


Accessibility statement These features have been provided to help make our site as accessible as possible to as many people as possible. All text should be resizable using your browser's t...
23/09/2016 10:55:00

Privacy Policy

Privacy Statement If you register with us as a student user, we ask you to provide us with your name and email address to allow us to generate a login for you. We will hold the data securely, i...
23/09/2016 10:53:00


23/09/2016 10:50:00

Website terms of use

Terms of Use Copyright The material on our website is copyright to UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA). Linking to our site or reproducing material from it - non-members of ...
23/09/2016 10:48:00

Contact Us

International students Our website gives information on lots of topics including visas and immigration, work during and after studies, home or overseas fee status regulations and sources of fun...
23/09/2016 10:47:00

30-day vignette

If you successfully apply for entry clearance for permission of more than six months, you will be issued with a vignette in your passport for a period of 30 days. A vignette is a sticker placed i...
22/09/2016 15:30:00

Vignette for full length of leave

A vignette is a sticker placed in your passport following a successful entry clearance application. It contains basic details about you and the permission you have been granted. A vignette i...
22/09/2016 15:27:00

Biometric Residence Permit

A Biometric Residence Permit (BRP) is a document issued by the Home Office to students (and their partners and children) as evidence of their immigration permission (also known as ...
22/09/2016 15:15:00

Student immigration: the basics

Most types of immigration permission allow you to study in the UK. The categories aimed specifically at students are Tier 4 (of the Points-Based System) and the short-term student route. We pro...
19/09/2016 10:22:00

Are you an EEA national?

You are a European Economic Area (EEA) national if you are a citizen of one of the following countries. If you have permanent residence in, but not citizenship of, any of these countries, you are...
19/09/2016 09:23:00

Your institution has Tier 4 sponsor licence problems

Most students complete their studies in the UK with no issues around their visa or Tier 4 sponsorship.  However, occasionally the Home Office (UK Visas and Immigration) might not be happy with a ...
14/09/2016 16:50:00

Legacy sponsor

A small number of Tier 4 sponsors are 'legacy sponsors'.  Legacy sponsors have a zero confirmation of acceptance for studies (CAS) allocation. If your institution becomes a legacy sponsor you can...
14/09/2016 15:54:00

Sponsor has a zero CAS allocation

The Home Office can decide to stop a Tier 4 sponsor from issuing any confirmations of acceptance for study (CAS), even if the sponsor remains on the register of Tier 4 sponsors.  This is usually ...
14/09/2016 15:53:00

You are outside the UK

This page explains how you are affected by your education provider's problems with its Tier 4 sponsor licence if you are not in the UK. You might not have applied for your Tier 4 entry clearance (vi...
14/09/2016 12:06:00

Next steps

This section explains your options if you stop studying at your sponsor institution because it has a problem with its Tier 4 licence or has closed. It is very important that the Home Office has your ...
14/09/2016 11:49:00

Sponsor fails annual compliance check

When an institution first obtains a Tier 4 licence from the Home Office it will be listed as a 'Probationary Sponsor' on the register of Tier 4 sponsors. After having this status for 12 months the in...
14/09/2016 11:40:00


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