The information on this page relates to international applicants & students.
It provides guidance and immigration information for International Students who are unconditionally accepted to the University of Dundee.
Due to regular changes to Immigration policies we also strongly recommend that you visit the UKVI Studying in the UK website, which is the definitive source of information regarding UK immigration.
Download the Tier 4 Applicant Policy Guidance document
This will give you up-to-date information on applying for a visa.
The information below is designed to give you guidance when applying for a Tier 4 Student General Visa or a student visitor visa, so please read it carefully. This information is correct as at 24 November 2016 and is subject to future changes by UKVI.
For Immigration Advice for current students or for support on extending your visa within the UK please see our international advice pages.
Important: it is your responsibility to check visa requirements and to apply for the correct visa to study at the University of Dundee.
International students from outside the EU/EEA and Switzerland applying to study in the UK will need to apply for a relevant visa. To find out whether you need a UK visa and understand which visa you should apply check gov.uk.
Any information the University provides is for guidance only. You should also read the UKVI studying in the UK website.
Tier 4 Student General Visa
The University of Dundee is a registered Sponsor for Tier 4 (General) Student Visa applications. International students from outside the EU/EEA and Switzerland applying to study a full-time undergraduate/postgraduate degree course in the UK for longer than six months are required to apply for a Tier 4 (General) Student Visa. In order to qualify for a Tier 4 (General) Student Visa you must meet the full requirements of Immigration Rules and have gained a total of 40 points as shown in the table below:
Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies from a fully licensed Tier 4 sponsor
You must have enough money to cover course fees and monthly living costs (also known as maintenance or funds)
TOTAL POINTS REQUIRED to apply for Tier 4 (General) Student Visa
Tier 4 TIME LIMIT ON STUDY AND ACADEMIC PROGRESSION
If you have previously studied at degree level in the UK, please be aware that there are additional factors you will need to consider before you apply for a Tier 4 (General) Student Visa.
The UKVI imposes set limits on the total amount of time you can spend in the UK as a Tier 4 (General) student and also require that students opting to study a further course in the UK after graduation can demonstrate academic progression.
In general, the UKVI allows undergraduates a maximum of five years in the UK studying for a three year degree programme. In Scotland, where a four year undergraduate Masters programme is the norm, the UKVI permits Tier 4 (General) Students a maximum of six years studying at undergraduate (Masters) level. Further exceptions apply for those studying Architecture, Medicine, Dentistry and Law. For PhD or other postgraduate research qualifications (see Annex 5 of Tier 4 Policy Guidance) the UKVI allows a maximum of eight years study time in the UK.
For further information on how the UKVI calculates the maximum period of time allowed in the UK as a Tier 4 (General) student see Tier 4 Policy Guidance paragraph 106-113 (page 29-32).
To demonstrate academic progression, the UKVI requires that your new course of study be a level above the previous course studied for which you were granted a Tier 4 (General) Student Visa. For example: progression from a pre-sessional English course to undergraduate degree/progression from undergraduate Masters to postgraduate research degree (PhD).
Proposals to new course at the same level as previous course may be considered as demonstrating UKVI principles of academic progression if related to the previous course allowing for greater specialism, or the combination of the previous course studied and new course support clearly stated career aspirations.
For further information on the guidance of academic progression see Tier 4 Policy Guidance paragraph 51-67 (page 20-23). If you are unsure whether your proposed programme of study meets these requirements, please contact admissions.
In order to remain compliant with the requirements of UKVI and retain its status as a Tier 4 Sponsor, the University of Dundee requires all applicants to complete a ‘Previous Study in the UK’ form and requests permission to contact the UKVI in order to verify the information provided. If you are not to complete your studies within the maximum time limits set by the UKVI or the proposed programme of study does not (without good reason) represent an academic progression, the University will be unable to issue you with a Confirmation of Acceptance of Studies (CAS).
The Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) is a unique electronic reference number issued by the UK Visas and Immigration sponsor management system. The CAS contains details about you and your course such as the start and end dates, course title, your name and passport number. The CAS will also include your first year's tuition fees and how much you have paid towards those tuition fees.
We can only issue an Admission Letter and CAS Statement once you have met and completed the following:
- Hold an unconditional offer and have firmly accepted
- Completed the Previous Study in the UK form
- Prepaid a minimum of 50% of one year’s tuition fee to the University OR provided us with a scanned copy of an official Sponsorship letter (which details covering full tuition fees)
- Considered pre-paying £1265 towards any University accommodation fees if you are planning to stay in and are allocated University accommodation
- Sent a scanned copy of the following documents
- Passport (photo page)
- Degree Certificate or Final Transcript
- English language Certificate or relevant equivalent
- Any monies you have paid us must have cleared in our account.
Once you've met the above we will:
- Email you with notification of a CAS checklist to check in My Applications. Check that all the information in your CAS checklist is correct and if so press submit.
- Once we receive notification that all the details are correct we will email you with an Admission Letter and CAS statement, this includes your CAS number and all the relevant information we have sent to UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI). Our Tier 4 sponsor licence number, name, address and all your relevant information is listed in the CAS Statement which you need to copy into your Tier 4 application.
- Although CAS numbers are valid for six months, you cannot use your CAS to apply for a visa more than three months before the start date of your course. This means that if you intend to begin a course on 7 September 2016, the earliest you can apply for your visa is 7 June 2016.
- Your CAS number is only valid for one Tier 4 application. If your visa is refused and you need to apply again you will have to ask us to issue you with a new CAS number. Please see Visa Refusal Guidance
Please read the immigration information on gov.uk before you start to fill in your Tier 4 application
All International applicants who hold an Unconditional firm offer to study at the University of Dundee are required to pay a minimum pre-payment of 50% of one year's tuition fees.
How to pay your tuition fees: This provides you with detailed information on the different payment methods you can choose from - online payment using a credit or debit card is the quickest method of payment to clear the University of Dundee's bank account.
Early Payment Discount: If you pay one year's tuition fees in full by certain dates you may be eligible for either a 10% or 5% discount on actual tuition fees due to the University.
Refund of Pre-Payment: If you are withdrawing your application to study at the University or have had a visa refusal and are requesting a refund of your pre-payment please complete the Pre-Payment Refund Request Application form and email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
All applicants are required to make a pre-payment of £300 to secure their accommodation booking. For relevant information on pre-payment and accommodation fees please refer to our Fee Payment Guide.
If you are sponsored by one of the following sponsors then you will not be required to make a pre-payment of 50% of one year's tuition fees:
- UK government
- Your home government
- British Council
- International scholarship organisation
- International company (not a company operating in just one overseas country)
- A University
You must submit a scanned copy of your official sponsorship letter to email@example.com. You must provide a copy of the original letter, on headed paper of the organisation sponsoring you, and it must contain an original signature.
The earliest you can apply for a Tier 4 (General) student visa is three months before the start date of the course.
You can find out where and how to apply for your visa in your home country from the UKVI website.
Information is in our Guidance and UKVI updates which will be able to assist you in applying for your visa.
There is also useful information about how to make a Tier 4 application on the UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA) website.
Documents required for your Tier 4 application
You need to submit the following documents as part of your application:
- a passport that is valid for a minimum period of one year after you arrive in Dundee;
- one new passport photograph that meets the UKVI guidance;
- a valid CAS Number (write your CAS number in the online Tier 4 form if you are applying from overseas);
- original qualification documents that are listed in your CAS, e.g. degree certificate or transcripts, English qualification if listed on your CAS. If your qualification documents are not in English you need to have them translated by a professional translator;
- original bank statement (if you are self-financing);
- original Sponsor letter (if you are financially sponsored)
- ATAS Certificate (if your course requires one, this is listed on your offer letter);
- original birth certificate (if you are providing your parents’ bank statements;
- letter of consent from your parents (if you are providing your parents’ bank statements).
If you are starting a new course in the UK and you are self-financing, you need to show that you have kept £9,135 for living expenses plus your first year’s tuition fees (balance of your tuition fees as you will have paid 50% to the University) in your bank account or your parents' bank account for 28 consecutive days before you apply.
You cannot use shares, bonds, private loans or company accounts as evidence of funds. You can only use your own bank statements or your parents’ bank statements as evidence of funds. There is further information on the UKVI Guidance and on our UKVI Information and Updates section on this page.
The most common Tier 4 refusals are due to incorrect documents submitted or insufficient funds in the bank account.
If you need a visa to study at the University of Dundee and are planning for a PhD/masters level course in a science/technology subject listed in Appendix 6 of the Immigration Rules you will need to obtain Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS) clearance from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO). If your studies fall into one of the specific postgraduate research STEM areas, or is one of a number of taught master’s programmes then you must obtain an ATAS certificate before you apply for your visa. Further guidance is available to access on the FCO website.
Your offer letter will clearly state ‘YES’ or ‘NO’ as to whether an ATAS certificate is required. If you do need an ATAS certificate we will provide you with the JACS Code for the area of research/study to be undertaken. Once you receive firmly accept an Unconditional Offer of study, the University will issue you with an ATAS statement which will provide the information required for you to apply to the FCO for your official ATAS clearance. ATAS Applications are completed online and are free of charge.
You need to allow at least 20 working days in order to receive your ATAS Certificate (this time is longer at busy months in the year). We strongly advise you to apply for your ATAS Certificate as soon as you receive the ATAS statement from the University.
You cannot apply for your Tier 4 Student Visa if you are not in receipt of the FCO ATAS Certificate, and if you do apply without providing your FCO ATAS Certificate your visa will be automatically refused. During your time at the University, if there are any changes to the course content (or research proposal) the FCO will require you to apply for a new ATAS clearance certificate.
Relevant web pages:
Visa Application Fees
The following Visa Application Fees will come into effect from April 2016:
Visa Applications made outside the UK
|Visa Type||Application Fee|
|Tier 4 - Main application||£328|
|Student visitor visa (6 months or less)||£89|
Visa Applications made within the UK
Tier 4 - Main application
Tier 4 – Main application ‘priority’
Tier 4 – Main application ‘premium’
See the Tier 4 Policy Guidance section "What Money does a Tier Student need" This will provide information on the funds and documents required Page 42 -52 will cover this section.
The UKVI will only grant a Tier 4 (General) Student visa if you are able to show that you have enough money to cover your course fees and living costs.
The maintenance requirements for Tier 4 students living outside of London are £1,015 per month. If you are a new student you will be expected to show the funds for the first year's tuition fees in addtion to £9,135 for living expenses in your bank account for 28 days before you make your visa application. If you are in receipt of official sponsorship then you must submit the original sponsorship letter which should detail that your tuition fees and living expenses minimum of £1,015 per month of study will be paid by your sponsor.
If you are staying at University accommodation a maximum of £1,265 paid to the University of Dundee in advance for your accommodation can be deducted from the amount of maintenance you must show that you have, even if you have paid more than £1,265 in advance.
Studying for 12 months – Maintenance Funds required
Accommodation for 12 months £6,000, pre-paid £3000
Total Maintenance Funds required
From the 5 November 2015 we can only accept two Approved SELTs Tests which can be shown on a CAS:
- Trinity College London
- IELTS – UKVI Test
If studying the University of Dundee Pre-Sessional or Foundation programmes you must have a valid IELTS UKVI test, this provides a UKVI unique number on the IELTS certficate.
If you are studying at Degree level, the University as an HEI sponsor can accept the following other English language qualifications.
There are 4 categories in which the University can assess your English language and provide the required statements on your CAS statement:
- UKVI Approved SELTS test – your CAS statement will provide the unique UKVI test number and the four components and overall score from your IELTs certificate.
- If the University has assessed other English language qualifications (as in the website above) your CAS statement will show: Higher Education Institution (HEI) has made assessment. You are not required to provide English language certificates with your visa application process.
- If you hold a Degree from the UK your CAS statement will show: Migrant holds Degree from a majority English speaking Country. You will have to provide the original Degree Certificate – please note we can’t accept these if you have studied distance learning.
- If you are a National from one of the approved UKVI majority English speaking country your CAS statement will show: Migrant from majority English speaking country.
The visa process is an application - and sometimes applications can be refused.
Visa refusal outside of the UK
If you use a University of Dundee CAS and your visa is refused outside of the UK, you will be sent a standard notification that your application has been refused. The notification will detail why the visa officer has not granted your visa. It will also detail if and how you can submit an administrative review - a process by which the original application can be reconsidered.
For information and advice on what to do if your visa is refused, please send an email, briefly summarising the details of the application you made and attaching a scanned copy of the refusal notice to firstname.lastname@example.org, please type Visa Refusal and your Student ID. No. in the subject title of your email.
Once we receive your email and copy of visa refusal we will advise if we can issue a 2nd CAS or if you should apply for an administrative review. If we advise to issue a 2nd CAS we will require proof that you can meet the criteria on which your first visa application was refused.
Visa refusal from within UK
If your visa has been refused from an application made in the UK, you will be sent a decision letter with your application. You should carefully read the notice of decision because it will explain why your visa has been refused and whether you can submit an administrative review.
Please email Admissions at email@example.com attaching a scanned copy of the refusal notice, please type Visa Refusal and your Student ID. No. in the subject title of your email.
Admissions will notify you if we recommend that it would be necessary for you to arrange an appointment with one of our advisers in International Student Support to assist you in re-applying in the UK. You can book an appointment online.
As in the case of all visa refusals, it is essential you seek advice. Please notify us of a refusal at: firstname.lastname@example.org
The University of Dundee will only issue 2 CASs for the same programme of study (examples below)
- If your first visa was refused due to financial documents or not submitting original Certificates, if you can prove you have the required documentation we will issue a 2nd CAS.
- if your first visa was refused due to a credibility interview we would not issue a 2nd CAS.
- If you receive two visa refusals for the same programme of study we will not issue a 3rd CAS
What happens if my visa is refused requesting Refund of Advanced Payment?
If your visa is refused and you wish to be reimbursed any advance payments which you have made, you must send a completed Advance Payment Refund Request Application with a scanned copy of your Refusal of Entry Clearance document (all pages) issued by the British Embassy which details the reasons for their decision. This should be emailed to email@example.com, please quote Visa Refusal Refund in the subject title of the email.
If your visa has been refused for any of the following reasons an administration fee of £1,000 will be deducted:
- not eligible to claim Qualification CAS 30 Points
- not eligible to claim Maintenance 10 Points
If your visa has been refused for any other reason then a £500 administration fee will be deducted.
School Administration Fee
For Postgraduate Programmes whereby it is stated in the offer letter that a School Administration Fee is applicable then this will be also be deducted from the reimbursement of the advanced payment.
If you are applying for a Tier 4 visa for more than six months then you will need to pay the Health Surcharge prior to applying for your Tier 4 visa. The Fee is £150 per year. The exact amount you have to pay depends on how much leave you are granted on your visa. The total surcharge amount for the whole period of study will be payable prior to visa application. For example:
- Studying 1 year = £225
- Studying 3 years = £525
(Dependants will be charged the same amount as the main applicant)
You will be asked to pay the surcharge before you start your visa application process, and you will receive confirmation by email of your confirmation reference number which you must include in your visa application. Remember to keep it safe as you may need it later if you invite your dependants to the UK.
You must still pay the charge even if you have private medical insurance.
There is further information about these charges on gov.uk
As part of the Tier 4 application process UKVI could invite you to attend a credibility interview. Please check with your local Visa Application Centre (VAC) or Worldbridge office or VfS centre to find out more about the process.
The interviews are carried out at the visa application centre as part of the appointment where you provide your biometrics (fingerprints). If you are asked to attend an interview you will need to speak to a UKVI officer based in Sheffield (in the UK) via Skype. The officer will ask you questions on the following areas:
- why you decided to study in the UK
- what made you choose the University of Dundee
- the reasons for selecting your course
- the reasons you chose your accommodation in Dundee
A report of the interview will be sent to the visa officer who is considering your Tier 4 application. This officer will consider this report along with the supporting documents you submit with your Tier 4 application when they make a decision to grant your Tier 4 visa.
If you are coming to the UK to study for more than six months you may need to submit a TB test as part of your Tier 4 application. You need to check on the UKVI website if the country you are applying from requires a TB test certificate.
UKVI has published an extensive list of financial institutions from Bangladesh, Cameroon, Ghana, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Iran and the Philippines whose financial statements will not be accepted as evidence for meeting the maintenance requirements under Tier 4. This means that your Tier 4 application will be refused if you submit financial documents showing that the funds are held at an institution on the list.
If you would like to bring your family with you when you come to the UK to study, it is better for you all to apply at the same time. Your spouse, civil partner, same-sex partner, unmarried partner or children's dependant applications are more likely to be successful that way. You can bring dependants to the UK if you are studying a postgraduate course of at least 12 months in duration or you are studying a course of at least six months in duration and you are sponsored by your Government.
You can bring your children with you to the UK if both parents will also be living in the UK. If your partner will not be joining you in the UK and you do not have sole custody of your children, your children cannot apply as dependants, instead they will need to apply as visitors instead. There is further information about dependants on UKCISA and on our International Advice factsheets 4 and 9.
Short term study visa
Student Term Student
If you are only coming for a course of six months or less and you do not intend to work part time or extend your immigration permission while you are in the UK, then you may wish to consider coming to the UK as a Short Term Student.
You can apply for a Student Visitor visa if:
- you’re doing a short course of study in the UK
- you’re from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland
- you meet the other eligibility requirements
What you can and can’t do
- do a short course of study in the UK, such as an English language course or a training course
- study at a state school
- work or carry out any business
- marry or register a civil partnership, or give notice of marriage or a civil partnership
- come to the UK specifically for private medical treatment
- extend this visa
- bring family members (‘dependants’) with you - they must apply separately
- get public funds
How long you can stay
You can stay in the UK for:
- 6 months - for any short course including English language courses
- 11 months - an extended visa for English language courses only
- £89 for a 6 month standard visa
- £170 for an 11 month extended visa
How long it takes
You can apply for a visa up to 3 months before your date of travel to the UK.
You should get a decision on your visa within 3 weeks.
Check the guide processing times to find out how long getting a visa might take in the country you’re applying from.
You must prove that you:
- are 18 or over
- have been offered a place on a course in the UK at an accepted place of study
- have enough money to support yourself without working or help from public funds, or that relatives and friends can support and house you
- can pay for your return or onward journey
Visiting the UK as part of an overseas course
You can apply for a Student Visitor visa if you’re studying at an overseas higher education institution and part of your course is in the UK.
Your institution must:
- hold its own national accreditation
- offer only part of its educational programme in the UK
- offer programmes that are equivalent to a UK degree
Researching in the UK for a short time
You can come to the UK for a short period of research if you’re already enrolled on an overseas course.
To be eligible:
- your course must be equivalent to a UK degree
- you must be carrying out the research at a UK recognised body, or a body that receives public funding as a higher education institute
Documents you must provide
When you apply you’ll need to provide:
- a current passport or other valid travel identification
- 1 passport-sized colour photograph
- evidence that you can support yourself during your trip, e.g. bank statements or payslips for the last 6 months
- details of where you intend to stay and your travel plans - you shouldn’t pay for accommodation or travel until you get your visa
- your tuberculosis (TB) test results if you’re from a country where you have to take the test
You’ll need to have a blank page in your passport on which to put the visa.
You’ll need to provide a certified translation of any documents that aren’t in English or Welsh.
Read the guide for a full list of documents you can provide.
Documents about your course
You must provide proof of:
- the course you’re studying, e.g. a letter of acceptance from the educational institution - on official headed paper, stating the course’s name, duration and cost (including accommodation)
- your previous study, e.g. academic certificates, academic references, academic transcripts
- any English language ability or qualifications, e.g. test certificates, award certificates for degrees taught in English
You may need to provide additional documents depending on your circumstances.
You must apply online for a Short term study visa.
You’ll need to have your fingerprints and photograph (known as ‘biometric information’) taken at a visa application centre as part of your application.
You may be able to get your visa faster or other services depending on what country you’re in - check with your visa application centre.
Before you start
You must be outside the UK, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man to apply for your visa.
You need to:
- register for an account
- fill in the application form in English
- pay for the visa fee online (in most cases)
- print out your form
- book and attend an appointment at a visa application centre
- have the original and a photocopy of all the supporting documents you need for your visa
- translate any supporting documents and include them with the originals if they aren’t in English
Tuberculosis (TB) test
You may need to get a TB test, depending on where you’re applying from - check if you need a TB test.
Attending an appointment
Check where your appointment will be before you apply - it may be in a different country.
How long it takes
Find out how long it will take to get your visa.
You can save your application form and finish it later once you’ve registered.