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The University of Southampton
Student Services

Short-term study

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Check which visa is right for you

Most international students travelling to the UK to study for more than 6 months will need to apply for a Student visa.

For a shorter programme of study or study on an English language course, you may be eligible for the following visa types:

You can check if you need a visa and what type you need. using the GOV.UK self checker (https://www.gov.uk/check-uk-visa) Depending on your nationality, you might not need to apply for a visa before you travel.  

Standard Visitor visa

A Visitor can come to the UK to:

Visitors who intend to study in the UK must, where required to do so by Appendix ATAS, provide a valid Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS) clearance certificate. You can find information about ATAS on the University Admissions ATAS webpages.

Conditions of a Standard Visitor visa

Check your decision letter or email for full details of the conditions of your visa.

You cannot:

Short-Term Study Visa

You can apply for a Short-term study visa to study an English language course lasting longer than 6 months and up to 11 months.

You will need to request a Short-Term Study visa letter from your Faculty Office when you have been unconditionally accepted on your programme of study to use as proof of the course(s) you will study.

Conditions of a Short-term study visa

Check your decision letter or email for full details of the conditions of your visa.

You cannot:

 

Applying for a visa

When to apply

When you need to apply for your visa will depend if you are a visa national or not.

If you are a visa national, you must apply for a visa before you travel to the UK. You can check if you need to apply before you travel using the UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) webpage to check if you need a UK visa. You can also find a list of visa nationals in the Immigration Rules Appendix Visitor: Visa national list.

If you are not a visa national, you must prepare the correct documents to show at the UK border. If you need a short-term study visa and you are not a visa national, you must see an Immigration Officer at the UK border and must not enter using eGates. If you have a criminal record or a complicated immigration history, it is advisable to apply for a visa before you travel, even if you are not a visa national.

If you are eligible for an Electronic Visa Waiver (EVW), you can use this visa type to study a programme which will be completed in less than 6 months. You cannot use the EVW to study part of a programme longer than 6 months.

Documents required for application

You must request a visa letter from your Faculty Office when you have been unconditionally accepted on your programme of study to use as proof of the course(s) you will be studying while you are in the UK.  

The documents you must provide include an ATAS certificate if you are applying for postgraduate study or research in one of the subjects listed in Immigration Rules Appendix ATAS. If you are not sure if your programme requires ATAS, check your offer letter or contact your Faculty Admissions Team.

You can find full information about the other documents you must provide on the UK Government webpages:

Short term study visa
Standard visitor visa

Enrolling for your Programme

When you arrive in Southampton you will need to attend a right to study check before you begin studying. 

You can find more information on the University webpage about updating your personal details.

Useful External Links

Please note: The University of Southampton is not responsible for content on external websites.

UKVI - check if you need a UK visaUKVI – short-term study visa informationUKCISA - short-term study information

Useful Internal Links

Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

If you are uncertain about anything or you have a query, then our comprehensive Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) page may have the answer.

Visa drop-in and appointments

Visa drop-in and appointments

We offer a drop-in service for quick questions about your visa or you can book an appointment to speak in depth with one of our Visa Advisors.

Enquiry Form

Enquiry Form

You can contact us through our online enquiry form. We encourage you to contact us through the online enquiry form rather than email.

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