Submitting your student visa application in the UK using UKVCAS

Updated on 23 April 2022

You may need an appointment with UK Visa and Citizenship Application Services to register your biometric details

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This guide should be read in conjunction with Preparing to extend your student visa 

As part of the student visa application process, you will be required to book an appointment at a UKVCAS visa centre to enrol your biometrics. If you have registered your biometrics previously in the UK, you may receive an email to confirm they will use your biometrics without having to attend an appointment.

How to submit your application

You will need to complete and submit your student visa application on-line. Once you have paid the immigration fees and health surcharge, you will be directed automatically to Sopra Steria’s website to book an appointment to have your biometric information taken. Sopra Steria is the commercial partner of UKVI and they run the UKVCAS Centres on behalf of the Home Office. 

In Scotland, there are centres in Glasgow and Edinburgh offering appointments (fees vary depending on appointment times).

You will be required to pay the application fee online before you are able to select an appointment date or time.

Prior to attending your biometric appointment at a UKVCAS centre, we recommend you scan and upload the required documents to avoid incurring additional charges. Following a successful submission of your online application, you should email your application receipt which contains a unique UKVI reference number and date of your appointment for our record keeping.

What to bring to your UKVCAS appointment

You should take the hard copies of all your original documents to your appointment in case there have been any issues uploading your documents.

Any family members applying with you will need to attend the appointment at the same time as you.

After your UKVCAS appointment

Your passport and supporting documents will be returned to you at your appointment. You will NOT receive your biometric residence permit (BRP) on the day of your appointment.  While you await a decision from UKVI, you should not travel outside the UK as your application will be treated as withdrawn automatically.

UKVCAS centres are operated by Sopra Steria, a private company who do not play any part in making a decision on your visa application. UKVCAS has no influence or information on your application once submitted and do not grant your visa. They cannot pass on any information to the Home Office so they will not respond to any status enquiries.

After you attend your appointment at UKVCAS centre, your application will be assigned to a caseworker in the Home Office for processing.

UKVI will notify you by email of the outcome of your application. An application made using standard service usually takes two weeks after biometric enrolment for an outcome. However, it can take up to eight weeks in total to process. Your BRP will be sent to you by courier to the mailing address used in your application form within ten working days of you being notified of an outcome. You should wait until you have received your BRP before making any arrangements to travel abroad.

While your application is pending

As long as you have submitted a visa extension application before your current visa expires, you are legally allowed to remain in the UK while your application is considered. The conditions of your stay remain the same as they were before you submitted the application.

If you receive your BRP at your home address, you must inform us immediately. This is vital for compliance purposes as the University will require a copy of your BRP card to continue your Student Visa sponsorship.

If your application is refused

If your visa is refused, please scan a copy of your refusal letter and email it to us at Please do not attempt to re-apply without seeking advice.


International Advice Service

+44 (0)1382 385676