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Applying for a visa

Immigration law in the UK can be complex. However, we’re here to help you understand your rights and responsibilities as an international student.

In the UK, it is illegal to give immigration advice unless you are fully trained and regulated by the Office of Immigration Services Commissioner (OISC). It is important that you seek professional advice before undertaking any changes or actions.

What do I need know about Student visas?
Which visa will I need?
How do I apply for a visa?
What if I receive a refusal notice?
How do I extend my visa?
What if I already have a visa?
Evidence of finances
Sponsored students
TB testing
Academic qualifications
English language requirements
Student visa credibility interviews
Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS)
Academic progression
Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS)

What you need to do

  • Keep your contact details with the University up-to-date, including your address, phone number and email address. This includes your term time and home address
  • Provide the University with a copy of your passport and visa. You must keep this updated in case of renewal or extension
  • Attend all contact points including classes, lectures, seminars, and reply to all emails sent to you by the Compliance and Immigration Manager.
  • I required, seek visa advice in timely manner from the Compliance and Immigration Manager.
  • Ensure that you leave the UK or apply to extend your stay before the expiry date of your current visa
  • Ensure that you apply for a new Academic Technology Approval Scheme certificate each time you make changes to your studies

What Edge Hill University needs to do

As your Sponsor, Edge Hill University has certain responsibilities, referred to as sponsor duties, for Student visas and all visa-controlled students.

Recording duties

For all visa-controlled students at the University, we must keep a record of:

  • your current address, email and telephone number
  • your current visa and passport
  • your engagement with your course via classes, lecturers, seminars or other activities (this only applies to Student visas).

Reporting duties

For those on a Student visa, the University is required to report the following to the UKVI (Home Office):

  • If you fail to enrol with the University by the latest enrolment date specified on your CAS.
  • If you change your programme of study with Edge Hill University. Under some circumstances you may not be able to change your programme, or this may require a new visa application. Please contact the International Office if you wish to change your programme of study.
  • If you do not fully engage with your studies. The University must report this and withdraw your sponsorship.
  • If you withdraw or are withdrawn from your programme of studies. If you are withdrawn you will be given five working days to appeal this decision. If you do appeal, this will not be reported until a decision has been made on the appeal.
  • If you change the location of your programme. Edge Hill University only has one campus which those on a Student visa can study on. Therefore, this only applies if you are on a placement.

Your engagement

Edge Hill University is required to monitor all those on a Student visa to ensure that they are engaging with their programme of studies.

We expect you to attend all of your classes, lectures and seminars each week and we expect all students to live within commutable distance from Edge Hill University.

It is your responsibility to inform your academic department and the International Office if you are unable to attend due to illness or other unexpected circumstances.

Taught students

Each faculty has an engagement policy that you will need to follow. The faculty will contact the Compliance and Immigration Manager if they have any concerns.

Research (including Masters dissertation)

Your supervisory tutor will contact the Graduate School and the Compliance and Immigration Manager if they have any concerns with your engagement with your research.

Many international students at Edge Hill University choose to travel to other European countries during their studies. If you are a student who does not hold an EU/EEA passport, you may need to apply for a visa prior to travelling to other European Countries from the UK.

What is a Schengen visa?

A Schengen visa will allow you to travel to all countries in the Schengen zone. For a list of countries in the Schengen zone please click here.

Types of Schengen visa:

  • Short-stay tourist visa
  • Airport Transit visa
  • Transit visa

If you are planning on visit the country and not just travelling through you will require the short-stay tourist visa.

Where can I apply for a Schengen visa?

  • If you are visiting one country in the Schengen zone, you should apply to their Embassy in the UK.
  • If you are visiting several countries in the Schengen zone, you should apply to the Embassy of your ‘main destination‘, which is the country you plan on spending the most time in during your travels.
  • If you are travelling to several countries in the Schengen zone but do not have a main destination, you should apply to the embassy of the country which you will first enter/visit.

Once you have decided which country’s embassy you should make your application to, please visit their embassy’s website for more information and advice regarding the application process. Many countries will use a third party organisation to assist with the processing of visa application such as VFS, please check the information on the embassy website carefully.

What supporting documents will I need?

You will need the following to apply for your Schengen visa:

  • valid passport with a blank page for the visa to be affixed.
  • Evidence of your residence in the UK. This would usually be your visa in your passport or BRP card if you have one.
  • A completed application form. This may be completed online depending on the country you are applying to.
  • Recent photograph(s). This can vary depending on the country you are applying to.
  • Proof of the purpose of your visit. This could be an invitation letter from friends, a conference booking, provisional travel bookings and others.
  • Evidence of sufficient money. You have to show you can support yourself during your trip. There is no set amount to show, but Austria and The Netherlands suggest £30 a day. However, this is a low estimate and you may want to have extra funds available, including approximately £40 a day. Evidence can be in the form of bank statements or credit card statements showing the available limit. Some countries may accept cash funds.
  • Proof of medical insurance for your trip.
  • Evidence of student status. You should request a letter from either the International Office or the Student Information Centre confirming your student status and that you are required to return to studies after visiting the Schengen area.
  • You must check that your current student visa has enough time remaining to allow you to return to the UK after your trip. Most Schengen countries require a specific period of leave remaining on your student visa beyond the trip for which the Schengen visa is sought.
  • Visa fee. This can vary from country to country. Most will require you to pay in cash (usually Pounds Sterling or Euros in some cases) or postal orders.
  • copy of all of the above documentation. Some embassies require a copy to be submitted but you should also keep a copy for yourself.

How long is the application process?

It is important to plan ahead and ensure that you are leaving sufficient time to make an application so you receive the visa before you intend to travel. You should apply for your Schengen visa as soon as the embassy you are applying to allows. Please check this carefully as this varies from country to country.

Depending on your nationality and other factors (including volume of applications, particularly as busy time of year such as Christmas), the process can take a few day to several weeks. Please check the embassy website for the country you are applying to for further information.

Some countries will require you to submit the application in person and return to collect your passport/visa at a later date. Please ensure you leave sufficient time and plan ahead for this as you may be required to travel directly to the embassy.

During your time in the UK, a family member or friend may wish to visit you for events such as your graduation. If they intend on coming to the UK for a period of less than six months, they may qualify to come as a standard visitor. If they are a visa national, it is compulsory for the application for entry clearance to be made before they travel to the UK.

If you wish to support their application, please contact the International Office for more information.

Can I bring a dependant to the UK?

In order to be eligible to bring a dependant to the UK, one of the following must apply:

  • You are a government sponsored student on a programme (undergraduate or Postgraduate level) that lasts longer than six months
  • You are studying, or have an unconditional firm offer for a programme at Edge Hill University at level 7 or above which lasts longer than nine months. These are Postgraduate (Masters) or PhD level qualifications
  • You are a Doctorate Extension Scheme student

Which family members can come as dependants?

A dependant is either:

  • Your husband, wife or civil partner
  • Your unmarried or same-sex partner
  • Your child under 18 years old, including if they were born in the UK during your stay. In order to bring your child, both parents must be travelling to the UK unless there are extenuating circumstance as to why this is not possible.

Evidence will be required as part of the Dependant visa application to prove that the individual is your dependant. An example of acceptable evidence is a marriage certificate.

What are the visa requirements?

If you are eligible to bring dependants, each dependant must evidence that they have a certain amount of money to support themselves while in the UK. This is currently set at £680 per month (outside of London) for the duration of their leave up to a maximum of nine months.

If you are on a one year programme, this means that each dependant must evidence that they have access to £6120 living costs. These funds must be held within a bank account for at least 28 consecutive days, with the statement being no older than 31 days on the date of application.

How do I apply?

It is recommend that your dependant applies at the same time as you for either an Entry Clearance Application from outside the UK or as part of a Visa Extension inside the UK. However, it is possible for a dependant to apply at a later date.

For more information, it is recommended you visit the UKVI and UKCISA webpages.

Can my dependant work?

Dependants are eligible to work and can take any type of employment or self-employment, excluding

  • work as a professional sportsperson, which includes being a sports coach
  • work as a doctor or dentist in training

For more information, please check the UKCISA webpages on dependants.

For more information, please refer to the PBS Dependant Policy guidanceUKVI webpages and UKCISA webpages.