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Before you apply for your visa

The following information will help you prepare for your visa application. Please read it before you apply for your visa.

When you are ready to make your visa application, please refer to the sections on Documents needed and Making your Tier 4 application.

Please note that the information on this page refers to Tier 4 visas. If you will be applying for a Short Term Study visa, please click here.

Tier 4 visa webinars

Join our Tier 4 Visa Application webinar and get all the guidance and tips you need to make your Middlesex University application as easy as possible. The webinars will help you prepare by covering:

  1. A brief introduction to the Tier 4 visa
  2. The documents you need for your application
  3. How to prepare for a Credibility Interview
  4. How to protect your Tier 4 visa

These webinars will run every Thursday from 3 May to 6 September at 12pm (UK time).

Book your place now

  • FAQs

    • Do I need a visa to study in the UK?

      You do not need a visa to study in the UK if you are a citizen of the European Union, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, or Switzerland.

      If you are a national of any other country, you may need a visa to study in the UK.

    • What types of Student visa are there?

      There are two types of student visa:

      Short Term Study - This is a temporary, short-term visa which allows you to come to the UK for a maximum of six months. It is normally used for short English Language or Summer School programmes. Further guidance on Short Term Study visas is available here

      Tier 4 - This is the main type of student visa. It allows you to come to the UK to study a course that is longer than six months. Most international students need a Tier 4 visa.

    • Who issues my visa?

      All UK Visas are issued by a government agency called UK Visas and Immigration (formerly the UKBA).

      If you are overseas, your visa application might be managed by an agency such as VFS Global. The agency will manage the application process, but the final decision on your visa will still be made by UK Visas and Immigration.

    • How do I know if I am eligible for a Tier 4 visa?

      In order to apply for a Tier 4 visa, you must have an unconditional offer to study at an institution which is licensed by the Home Office as a Tier 4 sponsor. Middlesex University is a licensed Tier 4 (General) sponsor.

      You must be at least 16 years old to apply for a Tier 4 visa to study at Middlesex University. We regret that we are unable to offer Tier 4 sponsorship to students who are under 16 years of age.

      You also need to meet the financial and documentation requirements. More information about these requirements can be found in the page on Making your Tier 4 Visa Application.

    • Who is my Tier 4 sponsor and what does this mean?

      Your University/College will act as your Tier 4 sponsor. This will be Middlesex University for students who are accepted onto courses at our campus in London.

      Your visa is issued under your institution's 'sponsor licence'. This means that the institution is responsible for you while you are in the UK, and must guarantee your student status with UK Visas and Immigration.

    • How long will my visa be valid?

      Your Tier 4 visa will be valid for the duration of your course, plus a short amount of time afterwards.

      The amount of time your visa is valid for after graduation depends on the length of your course:

      • More than 12 months: 4 months after graduation
      • 6-12 months: 2 months after graduation
      • Less than 6 months: 7 days after graduation
      • Pre-sessional courses: 1 month after graduation
    • Can I extend my visa if I do not complete my studies in time?

      You can extend your Tier 4 visa from within the UK if you need extra time for your studies. You do not need to leave the UK in order to do this.

      Please note that if you need to extend your visa, you must meet the requirements in place at the time you apply. These might have changed from when you applied for your original visa.

      Middlesex University has regular workshops and dedicated staff to help students extend their visas.

    • Can I take another course after I graduate?

      Many students decide to stay in the UK to study a Masters, or even a PhD, course after graduation.

      You can extend your Tier 4 visa to do another course, if you meet the following criteria:

      • You have not had a student visa for more than five years
      • The new course represents 'academic progress' from your original course.

      As long as there is not a long gap between your courses, you can extend your visa from within the UK, so you don't have to return home. You must do this before you start your new programme so please ensure you have your bank statements and documents ready prior to enrolment.

      Please note that if you need to extend your visa, you must meet the requirements in place at the time you apply. These might have changed from when you applied for your original visa.

      Middlesex University has regular workshops and dedicated staff to help students extend their visas.

    • I want to continue my studies in the UK. What is ‘academic progress’ and how do I demonstrate it?

      If you have already studied in the UK and want to take another course, you must show that there is a good reason for this. This is called 'academic progress'.

      If you will continue onto a higher level course (eg Undergraduate -> Postgraduate), you will automatically meet the academic progress requirements.

      If you want to start a course which is at the same level as your previous course (eg a second Masters course), you should justify why you want to do the new course. You can include this in your personal statement when you apply for the course, and it will be assessed as part of your application.

      Please note that academic progress only applies to courses that have been taken in the UK. If your previous study was overseas, this does not apply to you.

    • How long can I stay in the UK?

      You can have a Tier 4 visa for a maximum of five years. You cannot extend your visa beyond this, unless:

      • You study a four-year undergraduate degree course. This is usually a course that includes a placement year. In these cases you can stay in the UK for up to six years.
      • You study a PhD course.

      Some courses are exempt from the five-year limit. If you have previously taken a course that falls into any of these categories, you should let us know when you apply:

      • Architecture
      • Medicine
      • Veterinary Medicine/Science
      • Dentistry
      • Law (certain professional courses only)
      • Music (at a recognised 'Conservatoire')
    • Can I work while I am in the UK?

      Yes. You can work while you are in the UK, subject to certain restrictions.

      During term time:

      • Undergraduate and postgraduate students can work up to 20 hours per week
      • Foundation and pre-sessional students can work up to ten hours per week

      You can work full-time during official University vacations.

      There are some restrictions on the type of work you can do (for example, you cannot be self-employed). More information about work restrictions can be found on the UK Council for International Student Affairs website.

    • Can I do a placement as part of my course?

      Yes. You can do a placement as part of your course, as long as this approved by your institution and is an assessed part of your degree.

      Your placement can be full-time. It can be paid or unpaid.

      Middlesex University has excellent industry links and many of our undergraduate courses have the option of a placement year to help increase your employability.

    • What are the options to stay in the UK and work after graduation?

      You will have a small amount of time remaining on your visa following completion of your course. This may be up to four months and you can work full-time during this period.

      If you wish to stay longer, there are a few options available:

      • You can search for a job with an employer who can offer you a Tier 2 (General) visa.
      • If you are a PhD student, you can stay in the UK for up to 12 months following graduation under the Tier 4 Doctorate Extension Scheme.

      Please refer to the UK Visas and Immigration website for more information about work visas.

    • I already have a valid UK visa. Do I need to apply for a Tier 4 visa?

      Some other types of visa can be used for study. This depends on your individual circumstances and what type of visa you have. You should discuss this with your institution when you apply for your course.

      Please be aware that a Tier 4 visa is restricted to study only at the institution who issued your CAS. If you move to another institution, you must apply for a new visa, even if your current one is still valid.

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