These visas are for foreigners seeking to get involved in studies in UK educational institutions.

As per category of foreign visiting workers in this group – they can only get jobs where there is no competition for the job position with the UK workforce.

Eligible Tier 4 visiting workers must have a:

  • Job offer in a visiting work where there is no high job competition with the domestic workforce
  • Sponsorship letter (an employer with a Tier 4 sponsorship License)

Highly skilled or skilled workers of this category are eligible to apply for Tier 1 or Tier 2 visa if they want to get a long-term job in the UK. The visa application must be done in their home country.

Tier 4 has two visa types:

Visa category:

Tier 4 General Student

General description – About an individual in this category:

This visa is for persons who are not citizens of the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland of the age 16 or older, and want to enroll in post-16 in UK.

Visa category:

Tier 4 Child Student

General description – About an individual in this category:

This visa type is for foreign persons under the age of 18 who are not from the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland, and want study in the UK at an Independent School.

Sponsored Tier 4 Student

Generally, a sponsored Tier 4 Student means that a student who is applying or had a visa as a Tier 4 Student was approved to study in any of the following institutions:

  • A recognized organization or a higher education institution (HEI) in the UK – Those institutions have to be financed by public money issued by the department of employment and learning in Northern Ireland, The Higher Education Funding Council for England, The Higher Education Funding Council for Wales, or Scottish Funding Council;
  • Foreign Higher Education Institution (HEI) – involved in a short-term study abroad exchange programme in the UK;
  • Embedded College In the UK – any college in the UK that has undergone The Higher Education Review, and offers preparatory courses or non-degree courses;
  • A Self-Regulated Educational Institution in the UK

Financial Sponsorship of a Tier 4 Student

A candidate applying either for any Tier 4, either Tier 4 (General) Student or Tier 4 (Child) Student, does not need to meet the maintenance requirement, or to show that has money to cover their living and study costs while studying in the UK, in case they received in the last one year, receives at the moment of application, or about to receive a financial sponsorship.

Instead of maintenance evidence, such candidates should offer documents, which can prove the access to such financial sponsorship that can come from:

  • The UK government, home government, the British Council, an independent school, university or other that entirely covers candidate’s living and study costs;
  • A sponsor that partially covers candidate’s costs (study or living costs) – candidate must show maintenance for the other uncovered costs;
  • An International Scholarship Agency that fully or partially covers the candidate’s costs during studies in the UK

The candidate must be either:

  • Used such financial sponsorship within the last one year;
  • Is using at the moment such financial sponsorship

Candidates who are at the moment using or used within the last one year such support while having an earlier visa, should offer the Unconditional Written Consent of the Sponsor to the visa Application anytime they apply for a UK visa, either for an extension from inside the UK or to enter the UK from out of it.

The Unconditional Written Consent of the Visa Sponsor

This letter is a document to support candidate’s application, issued by the financial sponsor which can be either a Government or an International Scholarship Agency, to show that they have fully or partially covered in the past, they will cover in the future, or they will continue to cover candidate’s costs related to a visa application (living and study costs), depending on which visa category they are applying to.

Those who must submit this letter for a visa application, are receiving at the moment, or were receiving before (but not earlier than one year ago) a financial sponsorship from any of the aforesaid institutions, while having either a Tier 4 (General or Child) Student visa, a student visa, a student nurse visa, a student re-sitting an examination, a student preparing a thesis, a postgraduate doctor or dentist visa.

The letter should have the following elements:

  • Must be original (not a copy),
  • Have the logo and the official stamp of the funding institution;
  • Be signed by the authorized staff of the funding institution;
  • Demonstrate sponsor’s approval for candidate’s visa application, their arrival, stay, re-enter and settlement in the UK

Confirmation Letter From the Official Financial Sponsor

When an official financial sponsor will cover the study and living costs of a Tier 4 visa candidate partially or entirely, the candidate should offer this letter, which is issued by such financial supporter.

The letter should have the following elements:

  • Must be original (not a copy),
  • The logo and the official stamp of the financial sponsor;
  • The name and contact information of the financial sponsor;
  • The date and signature of the authorized staff of the financial sponsor;
  • Displays the amount, the period and what covers such financial support