UK Student Visas
If you are coming to study in the UK and are a visa national, you will need to apply for a student visa. There are three main types of student visas available:
- Short-Term Student route (for courses up to 6 months) - For children and adults undertaking short courses including English language
- Short-Term Student route (for courses up to 11 months) - For adults (plus students aged 16 and 17) undertaking English language courses for up to 11 months
- General Student Visa (GSV) - Courses of 11 or more months
You can find out more about these visas on the UK Gov website.
Level Requirement and Documents for General Student Visas
Normally the GSV will only be available to students studying for 11 or more months at our Brighton or London Central school only.
If you are applying for a General Student Visa your level of English must be at or above the level required by the UKVI. When you apply to study with us and request GSV sponsorship, you will therefore need to submit evidence of your English level. Evidence of English level must be in the form of a Secure English Language Test (SELT) certificate. Please visit the UKVI's website to view the current list of approved SELTs.
You will also need to submit a Declaration of Intent with your enrolment form to St Giles. This form can be downloaded here
If you are aged under 18, you will also need to complete a Parental Travel Consent Form. This can also be downloaded below, for your college of choice:
St Giles Brighton and London Central are listed by UKVI as sponsors with Tier 4 Sponsor status.
US Student Visas
St Giles San Francisco and St Giles New York City are authorised under federal law to enrol F1 non-immigrant visa students.
To qualify for an F1 visa, students must have at least 18 hours of instruction per week. This means 22 lessons or more at our US adult centres (1 lesson = 50 minutes). Students are also strongly encouraged to register for at least 4 weeks as this makes them a stronger candidate for visa approval.
For students attending our year-round adult centres, the minimum age to qualify for an F1 visa is 16 years old. For students attending our US Junior Summer Centres, they are not eligible for F1 visa status since the programme has fewer than 18 hours of instruction per week (20 lessons = 16.7 hours).
To learn more about the F1 visa process and requirements, please visit the Study in the States website created by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. This site includes step-by-step visa instructions in the Study Guide to the States brochure as well as advice about preparing for the visa appointment.
The U.S. consulate or embassy can accept F1 visa applications up to 90 days in advance. Since processing times vary by country, we recommend that students begin the F1 visa process as early as possible.
When enrolling an F1 student at our year-round centres, please also include a copy of the student’s passport and proof of financial funds. Our Registrars will then create the I-20 document (with SEVIS ID number) that is required for all F1 visa applicants. We can also create F2 dependent I-20s if needed for the student’s spouse and children.
You can download our guide to the US Student Visa for more information about this.
UK & USA centres: It is a requirement of Student Visas that students attend at least 80% of their course. St Giles is required to inform authorities of students persistently below this percentage, and your course will be cancelled if attendance doesn’t improve. This would also end your right to be in the country on a student visa. If your student visa is cancelled and you are asked to leave the country, you may not be able to return.
Canadian Student Visas
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) advises international students to prepare for their trip to study in Canada by reviewing Canada's entry requirements and applying as soon as possible for their study permit. This will help minimize stress and ensure a smooth experience for students travelling to Canada.
St Giles Vancouver is a member of Languages Canada. Languages Canada is recognised by Canadian Immigration and as such St Giles Vancouver can issue documents to support visa applications. You can download our Guide to Canadian Visas to help if you want to study at St Giles Vancouver.
St Giles Vancouver: it is a government visa requirement that students must show they are actively reviewing their studies and attendance certificates from the school may be withheld should students not meet our minimum expected standard of attendance (80% of your lessons).
If you have any questions about visa applications, please do not hesitate to contact us.