Cranfield offers advice and guidance to international students who require a visa to study in the UK.
If you require a visa in order to study at Cranfield University, the Student Immigration and Funding Team can offer support and advise in the following areas:
- Student visa;
- PBS (Student) Dependant;
- Studying at Cranfield with a visitor visa;
- Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS);
- CAS numbers;
- Other visa categories on which you can study.
Students coming to Cranfield to study one of our full-time programmes, some part-time research programmes, or our English for Academic Purposes (EAP) programme, will need to apply for a Student visa. Students coming to Cranfield to study one of our short courses or most of our part-time programmes will need to apply for a visitor visa.
Please read the following information carefully, and if you have any questions regarding immigration please email us.
Information for EEA and Swiss students
For those arriving in the UK after 11pm on 31 December 2020, (after the end of the Brexit transition period) you will have to apply for a visa under the Student visa route in place for all international students. You can apply for your Student visa within 6 months from your course start date. To apply under the Student visa route you will need to be issued a CAS (Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies) by Cranfield University. You will be able to complete your application, including identity verification, using a smartphone app called (ID Check). Some applicants may need to attend a Visa Application Centre if they are unable to access the application, or if they do not have a biometric passport. The UK Government published a guide for EEA students which provides more information. EEA and Swiss passport holders are exempt from requiring an ATAS certificate for UK study.
Graduate route visa
The Graduate route visa is a new two-year (three year for PhD students) work visa. Students holding a valid Tier 4 or Student visa, who have completed a degree at undergraduate level or above at a UK Higher Education Provider with a track record of compliance, are able to apply to remain in the UK and work or look for work.
IMPORTANT: Please do not submit an application until you meet all the eligibility criteria below otherwise you risk a visa refusal and/or losing your application fee.
- Must be on a Tier 4 or Student visa.
- Must apply from within the UK before your Tier 4/Student visa expires. It is not possible to apply for the Graduate visa outside the UK.
- You will need the CAS number that you used for your most recent Tier 4/Student visa application.
You must obtain 70 points in total. The areas that points will be awarded for are:
- Successful completion requirement,
- Qualification requirement,
- Study in the UK requirement.
There are also certain requirements to be met for the application to be valid (accepted). The following sections provide further information:
- Successful completion requirement
- You must have successfully completed the course you studied on your most recent student visa.
- The University will need to confirm your course has been successfully completed by the date of application. The University aims to report all successful completion to UKVI within 2 weeks of you receiving your pass letter
- Qualification requirement
- This requirement will be met as long as you have successfully completed a course for which you have been or will be awarded, such as a master’s degree, MPhil or PhD. PGCert and PGDip awards are not currently eligible under the Graduate route.
- If the course title changed but the course content remained unchanged you could still meet this requirement.
- The qualification must have been obtained in the last grant of Student permission.
- If you hold Student permission (visa) to cover a Student Union Sabbatical Officer position, the course must have been successfully completed within the last grant of student permission to study as a student. Please contact us if you have had 2 periods of student sabbatical leave.
- Study in the UK requirement
- You must have studied in the UK for a certain minimum period of the course:
MINIMUM PERIOD OF STUDY REQUIRED IN THE UK
Less than 12 months
Full duration of course
More than 12 months
Minimum 12 months
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, many students are studying online/via blended learning during the last academic year and are outside the UK. Students will still be eligible for the Graduate route visa as long as they are able to meet one of the following situations:
Students on courses of 12 months or less
- If you started the course in 2020 or spring 2021 through distance learning and you are entering UK for the first time, you must have arrived either before your student permission expires or by 27th September 2021, whichever is sooner.
- If you start the course in autumn 2021 or spring 2022, you must enter UK latest by 30th June 2022. However, it is recommended you travel to the UK as soon as you are able to do so and not wait until June 2022.
- If you are a student with existing student permission who began a course of 12 months or less in 2020 or 2021, already travelled to the UK during that period of student permission and then returned home for period of distance learning, you will be able to make a graduate route application if you are present in the UK before the end date of that student permission.
Students on courses of longer than 12 months
If your course is longer than 12 months, the following periods of distance learning will not prevent you from applying for the Graduate route visa:
- 24/01/2020 - 27/09/2021 any distance learning in the UK or overseas.
- 27/09/2021 - 30/06/2022 any distance learning overseas only.
There is no financial requirement for the Graduate route. Unlike other visas, you will not need to keep a certain amount of money in your bank account or submit bank statements with your visa application.
You will need to make the following payments at the point of application by debit or credit card:
- Application fee: £700
- Immigration Health Surcharge: £624 per year. Master’s graduates will pay £1,248 for a 2-year visa, PhD graduate will pay £1,872 for a 3-year visa.
When to apply
You should submit a visa application after you have been awarded and meet all the eligibility criteria but before your Student/Tier 4 visa expires.
Your degree must have been awarded and confirmed to UKVI by the University. The University aims to report all successful completion to UKVI within 2 weeks of you receiving your pass letter. Pass letters are usually processed within 2-3 weeks after the exam board date.
If you have any outstanding assessments after your course end date has passed, you will have to bear in mind an estimated award date. If this is after your visa expiry date, this may affect your Graduate visa eligibility.
For further information about the Graduate route visa please see the UKVI and UKCISA websites.
Cranfield University is implementing a range of activities to enable its graduates to take advantage of Government proposals to allow international students to work in the UK after graduation.
Find out more about the support Cranfield offers
Using eGates at the border
Since 2019, nationals from Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea and the United States of America have been able to use eGate entry at the border in 15 UK airports and the Eurotunnel.
If you are a national from one of these countries please note the instructions below:
- You are eligible to use the eGates, however, we will require proof that you entered the UK during the validity period of your vignette (entry visa in your passport). As such, please be sure to have evidence such as your boarding pass, flight tickets or flight booking available at registration.
- Similarly, if you are coming for a short period of study less than 6 months or are studying a part-time, distance learning course then when you arrive on campus we will need to see evidence such as your boarding pass, flight tickets or flight booking. By using the eGates you will be a standard visit visa holder (please see below)
All other nationalities and visa holders must use the standard entry points and be seen by a border force officer.
We offer advice and guidance on how to apply for the Student visa from both inside and outside the UK. We can also help with the following visas:
- Student visa for full-time and part-time students;
- Doctorate Extension Scheme;
- Schengen visa;
- Studying at Cranfield on a visitor visa;
- Skilled Worker Route (formerly Tier 2 visa);
- Start-up visa (formerly Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur).
Studying at Cranfield with a visitor visa
Students can undertake study at Cranfield on a visitor visa in the below circumstances
- If you are studying a short course of study for 6 months or less
- If you are undertaking a period of research as a visiting researcher for 6 months or less
- If you are studying a part-time course of study that is longer than 6 months and meets the definition of a distance learning course. For visa purposes a distance learning course is one where you do less than 56 days of study on-campus in the UK in any 6 month period.
If your study is one of the above options then instead of receiving a CAS and applying for a student visa then you will instead apply for a visitor visa or if you are a non-visa national you receive one when you arrive to the UK. If you are unclear on the visa type that is appropriate for your study at Cranfield please contact the Student Immigration and Funding team – firstname.lastname@example.org.
A visitor visa duration is normally a period of six months. However, a 'Standard visitor' can also apply for a visit visa with a two, five or ten year validity period. Whilst such visas will allow for multiple entry, the maximum duration of each visit will be restricted to six months.
You do not need to apply for a visitor visa before travelling if you are a non-visa national (check whether the country you are a citizen of appears on the visa national list), you can apply to enter the UK as a visitor on arrival at the port of entry unless you have previously been in breach of immigration law or have criminal record/s.
If you do not apply for a visitor visa before you travel, you will need to produce all the documents to support your application to enter the UK as a visitor to the Border Force Officer when you arrive at the port of entry to the UK. This includes evidence of the study that you wish to do in the UK as a visitor, an ATAS certificate if applicable and evidence of your finances in order to satisfy the genuineness requirement.
If you are a visa national then you must apply for entry clearance as a visitor before you travel to the UK. You have to fill the application in and pay for it online and submit the relevant supporting documents, including:
- A valid travel document;
- Evidence that you have enough money to support yourself while you are in the UK. You need to show that you can pay for any applicable tuition fees, accommodation and living expenses. There are no specific requirements which state the amount of money you must show when you apply for a visitor visa. However you must show that you have enough money to cover your course fees plus accommodation and living expenses. Using the Student maintenance figures as a guide only, it would be reasonable to show that you have the equivalent of £1,023 per month for the duration of your studies. If you will be staying with friends or family while in the UK, which will decrease your living costs, you can include evidence of this;
- Evidence of the study you will be undertaking and your acceptance onto this course;
- ATAS certificate if this is a requirement for your course;
- All other supporting documents as applicable as outlined in the Home Office's website on supporting documents for visitor applications to the UK. You will also need to provide a translation of any documents which are not already in English.
Application fees for six months visitor visa: £95
The fee for a long-term Standard Visitor visa depends on its length:
- 2 years - £361
- 5 years - £655
- 10 years - £822
Application processing time: 3 weeks on average
When to apply for visitor visa: Within 3 months from course start/attendance date
Meet the Student Immigration Team
Head of Student Immigration and Compliance
Student Immigration and Compliance Manager
Student Immigration Advisor