Study English in the UK (Short-term study visa)

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Overview

You can apply for a Short-term study visa to study English language in the UK.

This visa is for English language courses lasting longer than 6 months and up to 11 months.

If your course is different to this, check which visa you need.

If you or your family are from the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein

If you or your family member started living in the UK by 31 December 2020, you may be able to apply to the free EU Settlement Scheme.

The deadline to apply was 30 June 2021 for most people. You can still apply if either:

  • you have a later deadline - for example, you’re joining a family member in the UK who was living in the UK by 31 December 2020
  • you have ‘reasonable grounds’ for being unable to apply by 30 June 2021 - for example, you had an illness or were the victim of domestic abuse

Check if you can still apply to the EU Settlement Scheme.

Otherwise you need a visa to work in the UK. 

Irish citizens do not need to apply for a visa or to the EU Settlement Scheme.

How long you can stay

You can stay in the UK for the length of your course plus an extra 30 days as long as your stay is no longer than 11 months.

Fees and costs

It costs £186 for a Short-term study visa.

Healthcare surcharge

You’ll also have to pay the healthcare surcharge as part of your online application. It usually costs £470.

This is so you can use the National Health Service (NHS) in the UK.

Check how much you’ll need to pay before you apply.

What you cannot do

You cannot:

  • study on any other course or change your course while in the UK
  • study at a state-funded school
  • work or carry out any business (this includes paid or unpaid work, work experience or work placements)
  • extend this visa
  • bring family members (‘dependants’) with you on this visa
  • apply for most benefits (public funds) or the State Pension
  1. Step 1 Check if you need a visa

    You might be eligible for different visas depending on why you're visiting the UK and how long for.

    1. Check if you need a visa
  2. Step 2 Prepare the evidence you need

  3. Step 3 Apply

    1. Apply for a visa and book an appointment £186
    2. Check if you'll need a biometric residence permit
    3. Check where your visa appointment will be

    You should get a decision within 3 weeks of your appointment.

    You might be able to pay an extra £220 for a decision within 5 working days or £956 for a decision within 24 hours (not including weekends or bank holidays). Check with your visa application centre.

  4. Step 4 Attend an appointment

    1. What you need to prove at your appointment

    You'll be told when a decision has been made about your visa.

  5. Step 5 Travel to the UK

    1. Check what you need to show at the UK border
    2. Check what you can bring with you

    Keep the documents that prove why you're visiting the UK in your hand luggage so you can show them if asked.

    1. Check the documents you can use to show why you're visiting the UK
  6. Step 6 After you arrive in the UK

    You'll need to collect your biometric residence permit soon after you arrive.

    1. Collect your biometric residence permit

    Check your visa to find out when you must leave the UK. If you break the conditions of your visa you may not be able to return to the UK again.