Visa and welfare support

We understand the importance of supporting our students all the way through their experience at the University of Derby. This is why we have a support centre with a dedicated team to offer their services such as visa advice, student welfare and faith issues.

We have:

Other relevant visa and immigration information

The application form that you will complete and the documents you submit will depend on where you are applying from and whether or not you have already started your course of study. Please click on the links below for information on the documents you are required to submit with your Tier 4 application, the forms that need to be completed and what happens after a decision has been made on your application.

Tier 4 students must show that their course represents progression from any previous course they have studied in the UK. For example, if you have completed a Bachelors degree (NQF level 6) you should then progress to a Masters degree (NQF level 7).

Does this affect me?

Academic progression applies to those who are applying for a Tier 4 visa in the UK and have previously studied on Tier 4 (General) or the Student visa route that was in place before the 31st March 2009. If you have a Tier 4 (Child) visa or applying from outside of the UK then you will be exempt from showing academic progression.

Can I study again at the same level?

It is possible to study again at the same level, however this will need to be justified. You will need to explain in your course application: 

  • How the new course is related to the previous course you have studied (for instance, the new course will involve a deeper specialisation of a chosen field), or
  • Your previous and new course combined support your career aspirations

Your explanation for same level study will be considered by the admissions team and included in your CAS if approved. You can only study again at the same level for degree level courses (Bachelors, Masters, etc.).

Can I study at a lower level?

No, you cannot study at a lower level than what you have already studied. For example, if you have already studied at Masters level and wish to study a Bachelors degree this will not be possible under Tier 4.

What if I don’t meet academic progression requirements?

Academic progression applies to Tier 4 applications submitted within the UK. This means that you will not be subject to the requirements if you are making an application from your home country. However UKVI may still look at your application with additional detail and require you to attend a credibility interview. We may not be able to offer you a place if we feel that your application may be refused on these grounds.

Certain courses at postgraduate level require an Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS) clearance certificate before you will be granted a Tier 4 visa. The ATAS certificate is issued by the UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), which gives you the clearance to study certain subject areas that could be used to aid in the development of weapons of mass destruction (such as science, medicine, engineering).

Will I need an ATAS certificate?

If you are a citizen of an EEA country, Switzerland, or have Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK, you will not need an ATAS certificate. All other applicants will require one if studying one of the following taught Masters programmes:

MSc Applied Acoustics

MEng Mechanical Engineering

MSc Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering

MEng Motorsport Engineering

MSc Motorsport Engineering

For Research students it depends on your field of research. The Research Office will inform you if you need an ATAS certificate.

When do I need to apply?

You should apply as soon as possible. You must provide your ATAS certificate with your Tier 4 application, so you will not be given a CAS until you can provide the certificate to the university. Tier 4 applications submitted without an ATAS certificate where one is required are likely to be refused. ATAS certificates are valid for six months and should be used in a visa application within that timeframe.

How do I apply?

You need to complete an online application form through the ATAS website. There is no fee to pay and you do not need to submit any supporting documents. The application will just ask for your personal details, details of any previous study or employment and an outline of your proposed research or study modules.

What if I change my course or need to extend my visa?

You will need to apply for a new ATAS certificate if you are extending your visa to continue studying a course that requires one. If you are changing your course and the new course requires an ATAS certificate you will also need to apply. As before, you need the certificate before you can apply for the visa.

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