Child Student Visa (Tier 4)
You can apply for the Tier 4 (Child) student visa if you are aged between 4 and 17 and you want to study at an independent school in the UK.
You must also:
have a place on a course
have the consent of your parent or guardian
have enough money to cover your course fees and living costs
be from a country that’s not in the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland
meet the eligibility requirements
How long it will take
The earliest you can apply for a visa is 3 months before you start your course.
You’ll usually get a decision on your visa within 3 weeks.
It costs £348 to apply for a Tier 4 (Child) student visa from outside the UK.
You will also have to pay the healthcare surcharge as part of your application. Check how much you will have to pay before you apply.
How long you can stay
Your age and the length of your course of study will affect how long you can stay.
Age when you apply - Under 16
How long you can stay - Course length (up to 6 years) plus 4 months afterwards
You can arrive in the UK: up to 1 week before your course starts if your course lasts 6 months or less
Age when you apply - 16 or 17
How long you can stay - Course length (up to 3 years) plus 4 months afterwards
You can arrive in the UK: up to 1 month before your course starts if your course lasts more than 6 months
What you can and cannot do
study at an independent school
apply from outside the UK
You can also work, if you are 16 or over:
part-time during term for up to 10 hours per week
full-time during vacations
on a work placement as part of your course (but not for more than 50% of your course time)
as a student union sabbatical officer for up to 2 years
study at an academy or a local authority-funded school (also known as a maintained school) or further education college
take a full-time permanent job or be self-employed
work as a doctor or dentist in training
work as a professional sportsperson (for example a sports coach) or entertainer
settle in the UK on this visa
bring in family members (‘dependants’) - if your parents want to accompany you, they will need to apply for a Parent of a Tier 4 (Child) visa
Read the full guidance on the Tier 4 (Child) student visa.
Further information on Child Student Visas can be found on GOV.UK.