Visa Information

This information is for new students preparing to apply for a student visa. If you are a current student, please check visa information for current students page.

Students who began their studies in January or February 2021 must be in the UK by 27 September 2021 to apply.


General Visa Information

When preparing to study and live in the UK, there will be certain procedures and information that you will need to know to make sure your transition is as smooth as possible.

Usually if you are from outside the UK, are over the age of 16 and are coming to study for longer than 6 months, you will need a Student visa to study in the UK. You can check if you require a visa to study in the UK on the UK government website.

EU/EEA and Swiss nationals arriving into the UK from 1 January 2021 onwards will need to apply for a visa to study in the UK if they plan to study for longer than 6 months (if not already registered under the EU settlement scheme). If you are a current student and are an EU/EEA or Swiss national, please see information and guidance here.

If you are coming to study at Abertay as part of an exchange or mobility programme, including Erasmus+, for less than 6 months, please visit the Incoming Students webpages.

Visa Requirements

To be eligible to apply for a Student visa, you need to be able to score 70 points. Points are non-tradeable, which means you will need to meet all the requirements. You will be awarded points for meeting the requirements as set out below:

Points type Requirements to be met Number of points
  • Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS)
  • Course
  • Approved Qualification
  • Level of Study
  • Place of Study
Financial Evidence of funds for tuition fees and living expenses for one academic year (up to 9 months living expenses) 10
English language Evidence of English language proficiency equivalent to CEFR level B2 (submitted to UK education provider - e.g. Abertay) 10


Visa Application Process

(Applying for Entry Clearance to study in the UK):

Step Find out more
1. Your course Check that the course you are applying for is an accepted level:
2. Financial requirement You will need enough money to cover your tuition fees and monthly living expenses for one academic year (up to 9 months' living expenses). For further information on how much money you will require and how to calculate it, please refer to the following link:
3. Apply to Abertay Apply for your chosen course and fulfil all offer conditions to obtain your Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS)
4. Documents for application All applicants will need to provide:
  • current passport or other valid travel documentation
  • Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) from your course provider
You may also need to provide other documents.You can find the full list of what you’ll need to provide when applying for your Student visa here:
5. Apply online Complete your application online and submit with payment and supporting documents: You will also need to prove your identity and will be told what you need to do when you apply. This will be one of the following (depending on your type of passport/travel documentation):
  • give your fingerprints and a photograph (biometric information) at a visa application centre
  • use the ‘UK Immigration: ID Check’ app to scan your identity document

For full information about the Student visa for studying in the UK, please visit the UK government webpages.

Please read our overseas pre-arrival guide for all the information you need before you arrive in Dundee.

July 2021 – New Graduate Visa Route

From 1 July 2021 international students can apply for the 'Graduate Visa route'. This is if you want to remain in the UK to work, or look for work, for two years after graduation. That limit is three years for doctoral students.

The Graduate route is a different visa from the Tier 4 or student visa, and you must apply separately from inside the UK to be eligible.

Graduates on this Visa route can work flexibly, and switch jobs if needed. You don’t need a job offer to be eligible, and there is no minimum salary requirement. Find out more on the Government Graduate Visa Route page.

Coronavirus updates:

If you are unable to travel to the UK due to the COVID 19 pandemic, UKVI have concessions recognising the disruption to international travel. To apply via the Graduate route, applicants who began their studies in autumn 2020 now have until 21 June 2021 to apply (updated from 6 April 2021).

Visa FAQs

Find answers to frequently asked visa questions. 

For further information and advice, please contact

When can I apply for a Student visa?

From outside the UK, the earliest you can apply for a visa is 6 months before you start your course. You’ll usually get a decision on your visa within 3 weeks.

From inside the UK, the earliest you can apply for a visa is 3 months before your course starts. You must apply before your current visa expires. Your new course must begin within 28 days of your current visa expiring. You’ll usually get a decision within 8 weeks.

You will only be able to apply for a visa once you have received your CAS.

I already have a Tier 4 student visa. Do I need to reapply for the Student visa?

Visas that have been issued through the Tier 4 route are still valid. If the Tier 4 visa is valid until the end of your expected study, then you will not need to apply for a Student visa. The conditions of your Tier 4 student visa will remain.

How and where do I get my biometrics information taken?

Your biometric information will be taken at your nearest Visa Application Centre (VAC), or if your country does not have a VAC, then you will be able to have your biometrics taken at your local British mission. Your fingerprints or finger scans will be taken electronically; therefore, there will be no ink, liquid or chemicals used. You will also have your digital photographs taken at the same time, with the whole process taking no more than 5 minutes.

What are some of the conditions for biometrics?

  • No decoration (for example, Henna)
  • No cuts, bruises or other markings on your fingertips (before your finger scans are taken)
  • Any cuts or bruises to the face must have healed or disappeared prior to having your photograph taken
  • Digital photographs must be of your full face, no sunglasses, hats or any other head covering can be worn (unless you wear it for cultural or religious reasons but the face must not be covered)