You can apply for a Tier 4 (General) visa to study in the UK if you’re 16 or over and you:
- have been offered a place on a course
- can speak, read, write and understand English
- have enough money to support yourself and and pay for your course - this will vary depending on your circumstances
- are from a country that’s not in the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland
- you meet the other eligibility requirements
How long it will take
You can apply for a visa up to 3 months before your date of travel to the UK.
You should get a decision on your visa within 3 weeks.
Check the guide processing times to find out how long getting a visa might take in your country.
|Who you’re applying for||Apply||Extend or switch by post||Extend or switch in person (premium service)|
|Your partner or child under 18 applying at the same time as you||£298 each person||£305 each person||£680 each person|
|Your partner or child under 18 applying later, or child over 18||£298 each person||£406 each person||£781 each person|
How long you can stay
You can arrive in the UK before your course starts:
- up to 1 week before, if your course lasts 6 months or less
- up to 1 month before, if your course lasts more than 6 months
How long you can stay depends on the kind of course you’re doing and what study you’ve already completed.
What you can and can’t do
- work as a student union sabbatical officer
- apply from inside or outside the UK
- apply to extend your stay
You may also be able to do other work during your stay in the UK, depending on what level of course you’re doing and what kind of sponsor you have.
- get public funds
- work as professional sportsperson, including a sports coach
You may be able to bring in family members (‘dependants’).
Read the full guidance to find out how long you might be able to stay and what you can and can’t do - this will depend on your course of study.