Visa requirements

Student doing course work

Applying for a Visa

UK immigration policy changes regularly and while we'll try to keep this section of the website up-to-date, it is advisable that you also consult the UK Government website for the most recent information.

Do I need a Visa to study in the UK?

If you're a national of a country outside the European Economic Area (EEA) it's likely you'll need a visa to study in the UK. You can check whether you need a visa to study by visiting the UK Government website. If you are already in the UK, your current leave to remain status may allow you to study.  Please contact international@cityofglasgowcollege.ac.uk for further information.

Which Visa should I apply for?

The College provides support for 3 types of study visa:

  1. Tier 4 (General) Student Visa - for study of one - two years duration. 
  2. Short Term Study Visa (up to six months) - for study related to exams, re-sits and short commercial courses.
  3. Short Term Study Visa (up to 11 months) - for study related to English language only.

Tier 4 Visa

The UK Tier 4 visa is for students undertaking studies that last more than six months at a UK approved education institute. If your application to City of Glasgow College is successful, we'll grant you a Confirmation of Acceptance (CAS) - a unique document which you need to apply for a visa.

What do I need to know about this route?
  • This route is open to applicants outside the EEA (inc Switzerland) only.
  • You must be 18 or over.
  • Students can study a maximum of two years at the college on a Tier 4 Visa.
  • You must demonstrate that you have enough money available to support and accommodate yourself without working or help from public funds, or prove that you will be adequately supported and accommodated by relatives or friends.
  • You are not permitted to take paid or unpaid employment under this route.
What do I need to apply for a Tier 4 (General) Visa?

There are several important documents you'll need to include with your visa application. You apply for this at your nearest Visa Application Centre in your country of usual residence. You can find a full list of centres here.

The main documents you'll need are:

  • A valid passport.
  • The Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) which you have received from City of Glasgow College.
  • Original qualifications as listed in your CAS statement.
  • IELTS Academic for UKVI certificate*.
  • Evidence of financial support. Bank statements/bank letter demonstrating that funds for your course fees/living costs are available. Please refer to Tier 4 guidance on the UK Council for International Student Affairs website.
  • For official financially sponsored students, an original letter from your sponsor.
  • Receipt for course fees paid so far (if applicable).
  • A credit / debit card to pay for the visa application and immigration health surcharge fees.

*Only required of students from countries where English is not considered the first language.

How do I apply for a Tier 4 Visa?

Once you've successfully completed the college application stage, and your supporting documents have been checked by the International Office, your CAS will be sent by email.  Use your CAS to apply online for the Tier 4 visa. You can apply online here.

Before applying, make sure you read the visa overview and the Tier 4 guidance information. There are also guidance notes for the online application form which are very helpful. All of these can be found on the UK Government website.

In your application you'll be asked to select a UK Post Office to collect your residence permit when you arrive. Please choose Glassford Street Post Office in Glasgow, which is very close to the college.

When you submit your application online, you'll be asked to make an appointment at your local visa centre to submit your signed declaration and all of your supporting documents. You'll also be asked for your biometric details.

If you have any questions about the application, please contact a member of our International Team at international@cityofglasgowcollege.ac.uk and we'll be more than happy to help. 

What happens next?

When your visa application is approved, your passport and temporary Tier 4 visa vignette (sticker for your passport) will be posted to you. Once you receive these, you can travel to the UK. Please keep the International Office up-to-date with your travel arrangements. 

If for some reason your visa is refused, please contact the International Team with a copy of your refusal notice. We'll review your application and refusal to see how we can help you apply for a review of the decision.

What happens when I arrive?

On arrival at the UK Border control have your passport, CAS or short term study letter and your proof of funding ready in case the immigration officer asks to see these documents. On arrival at the college, come and register at the International Office at Riverside Campus. Please bring your passport and the original qualifications you used for your Tier 4 application. We'll give you some essential information and direct you to the local Post Office to collect your biometric residence permit. After this you can enrol on your course.

Within your first term, the International Office and Student Engagement Team will invite you to our welcome event and our international student orientation events, where you can meet our staff and representatives from local services and businesses. Our Student Engagement Team can also help you register with a doctor, join a gym and open a UK bank account.

College Tier 4 Responsibilities:
  • The college will carefully monitor the attendance of all Tier 4 students and report those with poor attendance to the UK Government. 
  • The college will also maintain an up-to-date file for all Tier 4 students which includes contact details, a copy of your passport, BRP, and copies of any other documents used as evidence for a Tier 4 visa application. 
  • The college will comply with UK immigration law.

Short-term Study Visa (Up to Six Months)

If your course is less than 6 months long, you should apply for a short term study visa.

What do I need to know about this route?
  • This route is open to applicants outside of the EEA/Switzerland only.
  • You must be 18 or over to apply.
  • This route is non-extendable – you must intend to leave the UK at the end of your visit.
  • You are not permitted to take paid or unpaid employment under this route.
  • You must demonstrate that you have enough money available to support and accommodate yourself without working or help from public funds (or prove that you will be adequately supported and accommodated by relatives or friends).
  • You must show that you can meet the cost of the return journey.
What do I need to apply for a Short-term Study Visa?

When your application has been successful and your payment has been made, a Visa Support Letter will be issued by the college.

For full information on other supporting documents required, please consult the UK Government website.

Short-term Study Visa (Up to Eleven Months)

This route applies exclusively to students on English language programmes, who are eligible to apply for an 11 month visa.

What do I need to know about this route?
  • This route is open to applicants outside of the UK only.
  • You can only take this route if you're studying ESOL only. Students who are studying ESOL alongside another course do not qualify.
  • You must be 18 or over to apply.
  • This route is non-extendable – you must intend to leave the UK at the end of your visit.
  • You are not permitted to take paid or unpaid employment under this route.
  • You must demonstrate that you have enough money available to support and accommodate yourself without working or help from public funds (or prove that you will be adequately supported and accommodated by relatives or friends).
  • You must show that you can meet the cost of the return journey.
What do I need to apply for an extended Student Visitor Visa?

When your application has been successful and your payment has been made, a Visa Support Letter will be issued by the college.

For full information on other supporting documents required, please consult the student visitor page on the UK Government website