An appropriate VISA will be required for students from countries outside of the European Community for entry into the U.K.
ISE provide letters to assist students in acquiring a VISA and it is strongly recommended that all non E.C. students wishing to study contact the school in advance so that arrangements can be made.
Students visas are generally awarded to students who are registered on full-time courses (15 hours per week or more) lasting more than 6 months, whilst short term or Student Visitor Visas, are issued to students registered on courses of 6 months or less. Please contact your local British Embassy visa section to obtain the most up to date information.
Basic Requirements for International Students
In order to obtain a visa to study in the UK, applicants from countries outside the European Community must have a CAS Statement (or Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies) to show that they have been accepted on a course at an acceptable level with an approved Education Provider and evidence of money to cover your monthly living costs (also known as maintenance) for the whole length of the course or the first 9 months for courses longer than 9 months.
Requirement 1 - CAS Statement
CAS, or Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies, has replaced the visa letter process formerly employed by the UK Border Agency.
Intensive School of English will provide an original CAS Statement to students after payment for the course has been received (or guaranteed by a government or official recognised institution). The letter is sent to you for use with your Application in your home country.
Requirement 2 - Bank Statements
Evidence of funds must be provided to show that applicants have the equivalent of at least £600 per month for each month of their course in the UK to cover living costs (maintenance) plus any outstanding fees for the course. So, for example, a student accepted on a 7 month course must show 7 x £600 (£4,200) in a personal bank statement, or a student accepted on a 9 month course must show 9 x £600 (£5,400) in a personal bank statement for mainenance, plus the amount of any unpaid tuition fees.
Studying a Course at an Acceptable Level
In meeting with Home Office guidelines, the school is required to test all candidates prior to their acceptance on an English Language Course. Long Term Students taking courses of more than 6 months are required to meet at least Level B1 of the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) which is the equivalent of an Intermediate level General English.
Tests can be taken online or we can send one to you by email or post. The result of the test must be confirmed by the school prior to your acceptance on a course and issue of Visa Letter.
UK Border Agency Update - Changes for Non-EU students from 3 March 2010*
(for students making applications on or after 3 March 2010)
All students entering and staying in the UK for longer than 6 months will do so under the Tier 4 Adult Student category. The following conditions apply:
• A minimum level of Intermediate (CEFR B1) is required to apply under the Tier 4 Adult Student category (as a long term student)
• Beginner & elementary students can apply as Student Visitors but only to a maximum of 6 months study with no provision for work.
• Courses of 6 months or less will fall under the Student Visitor category, the same as a General Visitor with no provision for work.
• Government sponsored students can study at any level under Tier 4.
• Permitted working hours reduced from 20 to 10 hours per week (during term time)
Will my existing visa conditions still apply?
If your last visa or permission of Leave to Remain was granted before 3 March 2010 or your application is made before that same date, you can continue to stay in the UK under the previous rules. This means work of up to 20 hours is permitted until you apply for a new extension of Leave to Remain in the UK.
How long can I study for?
If you are 18 years old or over and studying below degree level, you will only be allowed to study for a total of three years in the United Kingdom. (This does not include any time that you have spent studying below degree level under the student rules that were in place before 31 March 2009.)
More specific visa information can be obtained from the agencies below:
- The UK Visas website provides information on visa requirements and how to apply for a visa before coming to the UK:
- The Home Office's UK Border Agency (UKBA) website provides immigration information for people already in the UK:
- You can contact the Immigration Advisory Services (IAS):
- The UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA) produce guidance notes for students on "Immigration procedures after arrival in the UK":
People who provide immigration advice need to be registered with the Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner (OISC). A list of registered members is at:
If you need to contact the British Embassy in your country before travelling, please see:
The British Council maintain offices in many cities around the world and can be a good source of advice. Please see: