International Student Support

Visas - Students applying from outside the UK

Applying for entry clearance under Tier 4 general

When you are applying for a visa to come to the UK, you will apply for an Entry Clearance visa at your nearest Visa Application Centre in your home country.  If you are coming to study a course of six months or longer, you will apply for entry clearance under Tier 4 of the Points Based System.  

When you apply for your visa you will need to include a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) number.  You will be provided with this by Queen's University once you have accepted an unconditional offer for your course.  We will send you a document called a 'CAS Statement'.  The CAS Statement will include all the important information about your CAS and your programme of study.  It will also tell you the date you must be at Queen's and you should plan to apply for your visa in order to arrive on time!  You will not be able to apply any earlier than three months before your start date at Queen's.  Please make sure you prepare your application and documents in sufficient time to apply for your visa.

Details of the application and guidance notes for this are found on the UK Visas & Immigration website.  In particular you should ensure that you have read carefully the Tier 4 Policy Guidance.

Guidance notes for your assistance from Queen's can be found here - QUB Entry Clearance Tier 4 Guidance.  We highly recommend that you download this document and read the guidance carefully. 


Entry visa and Biometric Residence Permits (BRPs) – new for 2015

From 2015, UK Visas and Immigration has introduced a new way of providing you with your UK visa.

If your application for a visa to study at Queen’s is successful, you will receive an entry vignette in your passport, which is valid for 30 days from the date of your visa being issued.  Please note that you must arrive in the UK before the date of expiry on your 30 day vignette.

You will then be provided with a separate card called a Biometric Residence Permit (BRP), which you must collect within 10 days of arriving in the UK. When you travel outside of the UK, you will need both your passport and your BRP.

Queen’s University Belfast is an approved alternate collection location (ACL) for BRPs. So while you will provide your personal data for creation of the BRP through your visa immigration application, you can then choose to collect your card from Queen’s when you arrive. In order to do this, you must enter the Queen’s alternative collection location (ACL) code (below) into the Alternative Collection Field in your visa application (under ‘Biometric Residence Permit Collection’).

Queen’s alternative collection location (ACL) code: 2HE572

The alternative to collection from Queen’s is for you to collect at a Post Office. If you do not wish to collect your BRP from Queen’s (e.g. if you will be staying at another location outside of Northern Ireland when you first arrive in the UK for more than 10 days), the location of the Post Office branch will be assigned to you on the basis of a UK post code that you must enter. If you are under the age of 18, you will need to be accompanied by someone over the age of 18 to collect your BRP from a Post Office.

You can read more about BRPs and collection on the UK Visas and Immigration website here.

If you have any questions please contact us as soon as possible and we will be very happy to answer your questions and support you through the visa process.