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Overview of Student Visa application process

Section 1: Purpose and Contents of this page:

This page has been created with aim to provide you with a clear overview of the Student Visa application process.

Please be aware that the University cannot be held responsible for any technical IT problems relating to the online Student Visa application process. You are therefore advised to ensure you prepare your application in plenty of time before your current visa expires to allow for any unforeseen circumstances.

The Student VisasLink opens in a new window section of our website provides detailed information about the specific requirements for making a Student Visa application. All applicants should read the relevant sections of the Student Visa Policy GuidanceLink opens in a new window carefully before submitting their application.

You can check the visa processing time on the GOV websiteLink opens in a new window.

You can also check on GOV website for if you can pay for a faster service.

Please ensure you have carefully read the guidance provided for your situation BEFORE you contact Student Immigration.


Section 2: Applications submitted in the UK

1. Create an online account to enable you to start the online Student Visa application. You should refer to the Student Visa online application guidanceLink opens in a new window - student version we have produced to see how to do this.

2. Once the account is created, you will receive an email from the UKVI which contains a link to your online application form - make sure you remember which email address you have used for your Student Visa application, the password for your account, and pin the email which contains the link to your application form so that you can find it back quickly.

3. Complete the online application form and enter the CAS reference number sent to you either by your Admissions team (if you are an offer holder at Warwick), or by Student Immigration (if you are a continuing or returning student).

4. Once you are happy that the application form is completed correctly and that you have all the required documents in digital form, submit the application and follow the on-screen instructions to pay the Immigration Health Surcharge and visa application fees. Both payments should be made online by credit/debit card.

5. Once you have paid the visa application fees, you can download a copy of your application form and also receive application submission email, them both of these safe; this is evidence of your application and you may need to provide this to the University as part of online course registration process (if you do not receive your new visa before your course start date).

6. You will then need to click 'book an appointment'. Create an account with UKVCAS and upload your supporting documents.

7. From July 2020, the UKVI has started re-using biometric information and so you do not have the option to book an appointment once you register an account with the UKVCAS. Instead, the UKVI will first check if you are eligible for biometric re-use. This can take 1-2 weeks or longer if they are busy. If you have made a recent Student Visa visa application (usually within the last 5 years but depends on individual circumstances) and are eligible for this, you will receive an email from UKVCAS to confirm this, and a further email with information on how to download an app and send a facial image (photo). More information can be found on UKVCAS Service update website. Watch this video which explains how the process works.

8. If you are not eligible for biometric re-use, you will also receive an email giving information on how you can book an appointment.

9. Occasionally, if you have not uploaded all the documents at the time of making your online application, you may receive an email from the UKVI (WandSContingencyCaseworkDocumentReturn@homeoffice.gov.uk) asking you to send your supporting documents by email. It is a genuine request and please provide the document accordingly.

10. If you need to attend an appointment, when you attend the appointment, you will need to take your passport and all of your supporting documents (in case previous upload failed due to technical error).

11. Once you have provided your biometric data (including facial biometrics if you are eligible for biometric re-use) and uploaded all the required documents, your application will be considered by a caseworker.

12. The decision will usually be made within the processing time, depending on which kind of service you paid for. Click HERELink opens in a new window for more information.

13. Your new visa (on a BRP) will be returned to the address you provided on the Student Visa application form. It will be delivered by TNT, who will send an email to the email address you provided on the application form approximately 48 hours before attempting delivery. If you have used our address, we will contact you to collect it.

14. If your BRP is sent to you directly, you will need to upload scans of front and back HERELink opens in a new window as soon as it is received so that we can update your visa records in our system.

15. If you are required to register with the Police you should complete an online application with the police to update your new visa within 7 days of receiving it. You can then attend the appointment at a later date. Click HERELink opens in a new window for more details

Section 3: Applications submitted overseas

1. Look at the Home Office website for details of the application process in your country as this does vary. The University has staff members based in several countries around the world who may be able to help you if you have problems with your visa application. For information on whether your country has such a member of staff or representative, you should refer to the contacts pageLink opens in a new window.

2. Book a TB TestLink opens in a new window, if required.

3. Complete the online application form which can be accessed from HERELink opens in a new window. You can also use our visa application form GUIDELink opens in a new window, please be aware that the UKVI changed the format of application forms quite frequently hence the page numbers/series may be different then what you see on the guide. Make sure that you enter a sensible 'intended travel date to the UK' when completing the visa application form, as the date you provide will be used to set the earliest date you can travel to the UK (for most students, your visa will be granted up to 1 month before the 'course start date' as specified on your CAS, or, 7 days before the 'intended travel date' you put on the visa application form, whichever is later).

4. Once you have submitted the online application form, you will need to click on the 'Biometric Residence Permit Collection' section on the application portal. We recommend that you use the Alternative Location Collection code provided to you on your CAS to ensure your BRP gets sent directly to the University for your collection.

5. You will then need to make payment of the Immigration Health Surcharge and your Student Visa visa application fee online. Remember the date of payment for your Student Visa visa is the 'date of application' (your funds must have been held for 28 consecutive days on the 'date of application', unless the bank statement is produced earlier, in which case the 28-day period ends on the closing balance date of the bank statement). See money requirementsLink opens in a new window

6. You will then need to click 'book appointment' webpage. Select an appointment date which is convenient for you. Please be aware that all of your documents need to meet the requirements based on the online application submission and not the appointment date.

7. Gather your supporting documents which will accompany your application. Some nationalities need to provide fewer documents, please see Low Risk NationalsLink opens in a new window

8. Attend your appointment with the documents (in some countries, you will be able to pre-upload documents before attending the appointment) and provide your biometric data (fingerprints and photo). A small number of students may be asked to attend a short credibility interview as well.

9. A visa decision maker will consider your application.

10. Your documents and visa/temporary travel visa are returned to you either by post or you arrange collection of them. You will receive a 90-day travel visa to enable you to travel to the UK (do not travel to the UK before the start date of the visa, if you do then you will not be able to study).

11. You must collect your BRP within 10 days of arriving in the UK. If you included the Alternative Location Collection code on your Student Visa application form, your BRP card should be sent directly to the University, and you will be sent information by email as to when and where to collect them.

Section 4: Application process for EU/EEA/Swiss students

  • If you are in the UK and entered as a visitor, you cannot apply for a student visa while staying in the UK. You will need to be outside of the UK (usually country of your residence); apply for a student visa and once the the student visa is granted, you can travel after the start date of the student visa. If you enter before the start date, you cannot study in the UK.
  • EU, EEA and Swiss nationals making a Student visa application are able to use the new ‘UK Immigration: ID Check’ app which will use a chip in your passport to verify your identity. If the chip is broken, or if you are unable to use the app then you will be directed to a Visa Application Centre to register biometrics instead.
  • Make sure that you enter a sensible 'intended travel date to the UK' when completing the visa application form, as the date you provide will be used to set the earliest date you can travel to the UK (for most students, your visa will be granted up to 1 month before the 'course start date' as specified on your CAS, or, 7 days before the 'intended travel date' you put on the visa application form, whichever is later).
  • Those able to use the UK Immigration ID check app when applying will receive electronic notification of UKVI’s decision (via email). This will set out the full conditions of your immigration status.
  • You will also be able to check your immigration status and its conditions at any time using the 'View and Prove service' on GOV.UK. This online service will provide a secure record of your immigration status which is held digitally by the Home Office and is available to you at all times.
  • If you are starting a new course at Warwick, you will be asked to give a 'share code' when the course registration process so that we can verify your status digitally. The 'View and Prove serviceLink opens in a new window' can also be used to share and evidence of your rights in the UK – such as the right to work or study – by giving organisations or people, such as employers or universities access to the relevant information about your immigration status.
  • Your visa will be digital hence you will not receive a BRP card.

Section 5: If you have further queries and useful links:

Page Change Log:

Page Audit Review:
Previous Review Date Reviewed By Next Review Date
11/Apr/2022 ISA: YA 11/Apr/2023
Page Updates:
Section Updated Sub Section Short summary of update Updated By Updated When
Section 3 Apply overseas Added link to 'GOV - apply for a visa to come to the UK' and link for 'GOV - pay for a faster service'. ISM: EZ 20/Jun/2022
All All Page Created ISA: JL/YA 11/Apr/2022