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Short term study visa

shorttermvisaSome students will not meet the requirements of Tier 4, and may wish to come to the UK as student visitors.

This route is appropriate if you:

  • Have been accepted on a course of less than six months (Study Abroad students)

  • Need to come back to the UK to re-sit an exam or repeat a module

  • Are a distance learning student and you need to visit the UK occasionally and do not meet the requirements of Tier 4.

What are the conditions as a student visitor?

  • You will not be able to work

  • You must leave the UK by the date stated on your visa/passport stamp

  • You cannot extend your visa or change immigration status from within the UK. If you are going to progress on to another course and now meet the requirements for Tier 4, you will need to return home and make an application for a Tier 4 (General) visa

  • Your family will not be able to come to the UK as your dependants.

If you're still unsure as to whether you should apply to come to the UK as a student visitor, please email us.

How do I apply for a short term study visa?

If you're a visa national, you must apply for entry clearance (a visa) before you travel. You need to apply online on the UKVI website.

Student visitors studying at Royal Holloway can normally only come to the UK for a maximum of six months, For visa purposes, student visitors are not required to have a minimum level of English, however you will need to provide a letter from the university confirming you have been accepted on a course of study or are doing your re-sits/repeating a module.

If you're a national of a country that does not require you to obtain a visa and you're visiting the UK for less than six months you can apply to enter on arrival in the UK.  If you are coming to the UK to follow an English course of more than six but no more than eleven months you will need to apply for Entry Clearance, even if you are a non-visa national. You can check online if you need a UK visa.

Remember - if you don't require a visa, you should still carry with you all documents required to prove that you will be a student visitor. This includes your Student Visitor letter from the university and evidence of your finances. It is very important that you show these documents to the Immigration Officer when you arrive in the UK because if you do not you may be stamped in as a general visitor (tourist) and may not be able to enrol on your course.

What supporting documents do I need to apply for a short term study visa?

You can check on the UKVI website for supporting documents required for a short term study visa on Making an Application as a Student Visitor.

Documents required for a short term study visa application are:

  • Passport(s)

  • Application fee: £89 in local currency

  • One recent passport-photograph of yourself. Check UKVI guidelines

  • A student visitor letter from Royal Holloway: You must provide a letter to prove that you will be studying at Royal Holloway. If you are repeating a module or doing re-sits, you will need to request a Student Status letter from  the Student Services Centre via the online form here. You also need to provide details of your exam, and need to include this with your visa application

  • Financial evidence showing how you will fund your studies and stay in the UK

  • Other supporting documents relevant to your application.  

  • You can check the UK Visas & Immigration website for information and the UKVI Guide to Supporting Documents.

Important information for low risk nationals

Check if you're a low risk national.

When a low risk national arrives in the UK under the short term study route

To ensure the border force officer (BFO) is able to issue you with the correct leave to enter conditions, It will be useful if  you provide the following information if possible:

  • Present all the relevant university/college course of study documentation to the BFO with the passport and completed landing card

  • If asked, give clear details of the reason for travel ie short term study indicating how long the course will be

  • Check the endorsement in the passport before leaving the officer’s desk and seek clarification of the endorsement if required 

  • If you're a low risk national and you leave the UK before the completion of your course and wish to return to resume your studies with the university, you will have to seek leave to enter again and if satisfied the BFO will grant the leave and endorse your passport with the same stamp as below for up to six months.

When your passport is returned by the Border Force officer you should check that the endorsement in your  passport is as per image below with a date stamp endorsed below

short term stamp

If this information is not clear on your passport please contact the international student support office






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