International Students

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Freedom of movement between the UK and EU ends on 31 December 2020 and from 1st January 2021 the UK will implement a points based immigration system.


• International students, including EU, EEA and Swiss citizens, can now apply for their visa to study in the UK in 2021,through the new and improved Student route which forms part of the UK's points based immigration system. Apply on GOV.UK

• All prospective international students, including EU, EEA and Swiss nationals coming to the UK on or after 1 January 2021 will need to apply to the Student route , or the Child Student route if they are aged between 4 17 years old. Further guidance for EU/EEA and Swiss students can be found here


• EU, EEA and Swiss students and their family members who are resident in the UK by 31 December 2020 are eligible to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme and should not apply under the points based immigration system. EU citizens must have started living in the UK by 31 December 2020 to be eligible to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme and should apply by 30 June 2021. Students should still apply to the EU Settlement Scheme even if they do not intend to stay in the UK long term. It is free to apply and applications can be made online on GOV.UK


•EU, EEA and Swiss students can continue to visit the UK for up to 6 months without applying for a visa and may participate in short term study.

All students applying to the new Student route through the points based immigration system, will need to demonstrate they meet the required 70 points. They will achieve the required points if they can demonstrate that they have an offer from an approved educational institution and have been issued a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) by their sponsor before making an application to the Student route, speak English and are able to support themselves during their studies in the UK.

• A Student visa will cost £348 if applied for outside the UK and students will also need to pay the Immigration Health Surcharge as part of their application, which gives migrants access to the UK’s National Health Service on generally the same basis as a UK permanent resident. Students will receive a 25% discount on the Immigration Health Surcharge. The Immigration Health Surcharge increased on 27 October 2020 and the discounted rate for Student visa holders is £470.

•The UK has a world leading education sector and will continue to welcome talented and high potential international students. There will be no limit on the number of international students who can come to the UK to study, and we will seek to increase the number of international students in higher education as set out in the International
Education Strategy published in March 2019.

•We are also making it easier for the best international graduates to secure skilled jobs in the UK with our new Graduate route, which will allow international students who have completed undergraduate and master’s degrees in the UK to stay for 2 years and those who have completed a PhD to stay for 3 years.

If you need any further information or support you can reach our Student Services Team at lestudentservices@uhi.ac.uk