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Immigration Information

Most international students need a visa to study in the UK. Edinburgh College also welcomes applications from international students already in the UK on another type of visa or immigration permission, such as a dependent visa, Tier 2 and Tier 5 visa holders or EU, EEA and Swiss nationals who hold EU Settled/Pre-settled status but do not meet the residency criteria to qualify for ‘home fees’ student status. 

There are three main visa types for those wishing to come to the UK to study. The International team at Edinburgh College will assess the most appropriate visa route for your studies and provide you with more detailed advice about the visa application process. 

Visitor Visa For studies of up to six months
(Overseas cost £95)

  • You can study any type of short course (full time or part-time) for a maximum of six months.

  • No minimum English language requirements.

  • You cannot work whilst in the UK.

  • You must be 16 years old or over.

  • Nationals of certain countries can apply for entry clearance as a Visitor on arrival in the UK, please contact International to find out if you can apply on arrival in the UK.

  • If you are 16-17 years old you must provide a letter from your parent/guardian confirming details of your care and accommodation arrangements in the UK.

For further information on the Standard Visitor Visa, visit the UKVI website

Short-Term Study Visa of up to 11 Months, English Language Only
(Overseas cost £186)

  • You can study for between six and 11 months – but English language courses only.

  • No minimum English language requirements.

  • You cannot work whilst in the UK.

  • You must be 16 years old or over.

  • If you are 16-17 years old you must provide a letter from your parent/guardian confirming details of your care and accommodation arrangements in the UK.

For further information on the Short-Term Study Visa visit the UKVI website

Student Route (formerly known as Tier 4 General Student Visa)
(Overseas cost £348)

  • You must be 16 years old or over. 

  • You can study for up to two years below degree level (SCQF levels 6, 7 and 8).

  • You can work up to ten hours per week during term time.

  • You can work full-time during College holidays, see the College calendar for holiday details.

  • Subject to certain limited exceptions, you cannot bring dependants. 

  • You must meet the minimum English language requirements by taking a Secure English Language Test (SELT) with one of the following providers:

    • Academic IELTS for UKVI

    • Pearson PTE Academic UKVI

    • LanguageCert International ESOL SELT B2

    • Trinity College London ISEII 

  • If you have previously studied one of the following subjects in the UK, please contact the International team to check if you need to provide evidence of your English language level:

    • GCSE

    • A-level

    • Scottish National Qualification at level 4 or 5 or Scottish Higher or Advanced Higher, in English (language or literature)

  • You must have a CAS (Confirmation of Acceptance of Studies) from Edinburgh College 

  • You must have sufficient funds in your bank account for a minimum of 28 days before your Student visa application date:

    Duration Fee
    One academic year £9,207
    One semester £5,115
    (£1,015 per month)
  • If you have been living in the UK for 12 months or more immediately before you apply to switch to a Student visa, you might not need to show financial evidence, as detailed above. Please contact the International team for further advice.

  • You must apply for your visa in your home country or in a country where you have permanent residence. If you are switching from a Child Student Visa, or from a Student Visa from an institution that is a Higher Education Provider, you will be able to apply from within the UK.

  • You can extend your visa from within the UK if you are continuing your studies at a Higher Education Provider.

For further information on Student Visas, visit the UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) website   

Please note that not all courses on the Edinburgh College website meet the requirements for student visa sponsorship. Similarly, an applicant’s suitability for a Student Visa is carefully considered in line with relevant Student Visa Policy and Guidance.


For a Standard Visitor or a Short-Term Study Visa, you must prove you have sufficient funds for living expenses and accommodation during your time in the UK. There is no fixed amount stated in the Immigration Rules. As a general guide, we suggest approximately £1,000 per month of your stay up to a maximum of 9 months. However, applicants intending to live with family or friends in the UK can show less money in their supporting financial evidence as their living costs would be lower. You must leave the UK at the end of your course, or on or before the date your Short-Term Study visa ends, whichever is the earliest – you cannot extend your visa for more studies.

Immigration Health Surcharge

For all Student Visa and Short-Term Study Visa (up to 11 Months, English Language Only)

Applicants coming to the UK for more than six months, must also pay an additional Immigration Health Charge fee of £470 per year of your visa. This is payable as part of your online student visa application. Paying this charge will mean you will be entitled to receive free health services during your studies in the UK. Further information on the Immigration Health Surcharge is available on the Government's website.

Contact the International team at Edinburgh College for advice and support: 


Phone +44 (0) 131 297 9995

Once the International team has helped you to identify the visa type most suitable for you, we will send you further detailed guidance on how to apply for your visa type and the supporting document requirements. Please note we may request to check any documents relevant to your visa application, including financial documentation. 

More information on studying and living in the UK can be found at: 

Information Updated on January 2022

This information is correct at the time of the last update (March 2021) and is relevant only to studies at Edinburgh College. However, you should always check the UK Visas & Immigration website.

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