You can apply for a Standard Visitor visa / enter the UK as a visitor to do a short course of study. This route will replace the Short-term study route for most people (unless you are coming to the UK to study English Language between 6 and 11 months long).
This visa has a validity period of 6 months, if applying in advance, or until you leave the Common Travel Area (UK and Ireland) if you are eligible to apply on arrival at a UK Border.
This visa is suitable for:
With this visa you cannot:
Access NHS treatment without charge. You should therefore purchase adequate travel insurance that includes cover for any medical costs for the duration of your visa before you enter the UK.
If you wish to enter the UK using a Standard Visitor visa to study on a programme that requires ATAS approval, you are required to provide your ATAS certificate as part of the application process unless you are an exempt nationality (see below).
Students who are nationals of EU countries, the European Economic Area (EEA), Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea, Switzerland or the United States of America do not need an ATAS certificate. The requirement for ATAS clearance applies to all other students on courses flagged for ATAS clearance, regardless of their country of residence.
If you need to apply for an ATAS certificate please read the information on our website about how to apply.
If you are applying for a Standard Visitor visa to take your viva examination, you may require a new ATAS certificate so contact us for more information.
Students from most nationalities must apply for their Visitor visa before travelling to the UK. Some nationalities, including EEA nationals, are able to apply for their Visitor visa on arrival; these students are called non-visa nationals.
You must check whether your nationality is one that is required to apply for a visa before travelling (visa national) or whether you are a non-visa national.
If you are a non-visa national or an EEA/Swiss national, you will be able to enter the UK as a Visitor either via the e-Gate (eligible nationalities only) or by seeing an immigration officer on arrival. You must carry your visitor visa letter from the University of Manchester that confirms the details of your course in your hand luggage so you can present it to the border official at the airport.
It is important that you retain some form of evidence of your date of arrival in the UK if you use the eGates such as your boarding pass. This will help you remember the exact duration of your six month stay in order to avoid overstaying. You will also be required to email us this evidence for International Check-In when you arrive at the University of Manchester by emailing it to email@example.com
You should apply online through the UKVI website and answer all of the required questions.
You must NOT choose 'academic visit' as the reason for the visit in your application form as this will lead to you being issued with an academic visitor visa which is the incorrect type of visitor visa. You must apply for a standard visitor visa and choose 'study' as the reason for your visit.
You will either need to submit your documents to the Visa Application Centre or your documents will be scanned and returned to you when you attend your appointment:-
There is further information about the documents that are required on the UKVI website
If you have applied for a Standard Visitor visa overseas before you travel, you should receive a Visit visa vignette (sticker) in your passport.
If you apply for a Visitor visa at the port of entry to the UK and speak with an Immigration Officer, the officer will stamp your passport with a Visitor visa stamp.
If you enter via the EGates at the airport you will not receive a stamp in your passport so you need to retain your boarding pass and flight tickets as evidence of the date that you entered the UK as you will need to provide it when you attend international check-in at the University.
UKVI will assess whether you meet the requirements of the Visitor visa. This means ensuring that you do not intend to use the Visitor visa for frequent and successive periods of study.
If you intend to study a course of 6 months of less, and you apply for the visa before travelling, you should be granted a Visitor visa that is valid for the full 6 month period. The earliest date that you can travel to the UK is 7 days before the start of your course. If you have been issued with the incorrect dates on your visa i.e. your visa does not cover the duration of your course you need to contact the staff at the Visa Application Centre that you applied to in order to have your visa corrected. If you cannot amend your visa from overseas we may be able to help you to correct it from the UK.
You must intend to leave the UK within 30 days of your course finishing or before your Standard Visitor visa expires (whichever is soonest).
In addition to the documents listed above you need to show:-
If you are 16 or 17 and you want to apply for a Visitor visa please contact us so we can advise you further.
If you are a national of Bahrain, Oman, Kuwait, Qatar, UAE or Saudi Arabia you can travel to the UK as a visitor for up to six months if you have obtained an electronic visa waiver (EVW). The cost of the EVW visa is £30 and it is only valid for a single journey to the UK. You can apply for the EVW from 3 months to 48 hours before you travel to the UK through the UKVI website and you do not need to enrol your biometrics or attend a visa application centre. The visa is issued in an electronic format and you will need to present the visa to the border officials on your entry to the UK. If you want to apply you need to read the information on the UKVI website.