Tier 4 Visa

Information on Tier 4 visa (For non EU applicants) for courses over 6 months in length.

Visa information

In order to study our BA (Hons) Filmmaking, Filmmaking Diploma or the Screenwriting Diploma, you will need a UK visa. If you are younger than 18, you can apply for a Tier 4 (Child) student visa. If you are older, you will need a Tier 4 (General) student visa.

When should I apply for a visa?

The earliest you can apply for a visa is three months before your course start date. Apply as soon as possible after accepting your offer to a programme at the LFA to make sure there is enough time for your application to be processed.

How long can I stay in the UK on a student visa?

If your course is between 12 and 24 months long, you may arrive in the UK up to one month before the start date. You can stay in the UK for an extra four months after your course ends.

The visa process

In order to be granted a visa, your application must be approved at every stage. We understand that this can be a stressful and challenging process, and to help you through it the LFA Admissions team is happy to advise and support your application either in person, on the phone or via Skype.

The process is as follows:

  1. You must apply for the BA (Hons) Filmmaking, Filmmaking Diploma or the Screenwriting Diploma at London Film Academy.
  2. You must receive and accept an offer of a place on your chosen programme.
  3. The LFA Admissions Team will send you a list of documents required for the issuing of the CAS, including payment of your course fees deposit of £4,500. Below please find a list of required documents that you will need to submit to meet UKVI requirements:
    • A copy of your passport. This should clearly show the information page with your photo and passport number
    • A scanned copy of your IELTS Academic for UK VISAS and IMMIGRATION (UKVI) certificate with an overall score of 6.0 and a minimum of 5.5 in each component.
    • Scanned copies of your High School Certificate OR Undergraduate Degree
    • A letter from the Bank, this should be around the length of a paragraph written by an official (Manager, Clerk and so on), stating that it is your account, also signed and dated on the bank’s headed paper. If one of your parent’s is your financial sponsor then the letter needs to verify your parent as the account holder.
    • Bank statements which must display the following amounts: any outstanding tuition fees AND £12,000 for living costs, both these amounts must be clearly seen in your account for a minimum of 28 days.
    • A scanned copy of your birth certificate, we will need this if one of your parents is your financial sponsor
    • A letter from the parent which will be your financial sponsor, this should be around the length of a paragraph stating that they are willing to financially sponsor you on the course and during your studies, it also needs to be signed and dated.
    • The results for a Tuberculosis test, if needed. NB. Please complete all documents in English (documents must be officially translated, stamped and dated by official)
  4. Once submitted, the documents will be checked by the LFA Admissions Team, who will let you know at the earliest convenience if these meet UKVI requirements.
  5. LFA will issue you with CAS number. The LFA typically allocates your CAS number within 5 working days, and occasionally sooner if the course start date is imminent. A CAS contains details of the course you are studying and your personal details, such as your name, date of birth and passport number. You must contact us as soon as possible if you spot any mistakes on the CAS.
  6. Complete a Tier 4 visa application in your country of residence.
  7. Attend a Biometric and Credibility interview. This is where your photo and biometrics will be taken for the purpose of a British Residence Permit card. Please note that you will have to submit original documents requested at the end of your online Tier 4 visa application, including your passport.
  8. You will be contacted to let you know whether or not your visa application has been successful. We strongly advise against booking any travel tickets until you have received confirmation of a successful visa application.

Visa credibility interviews

Although it is unlikely, you may be required to attend a credibility interview to ensure that you comply with the UK’s immigration rules. In the interview, an Entry Clearance Officer (ECO) will try to establish that you are a genuine student. You need to show you are serious about studying, and that you have good knowledge of your chosen college and course. If you have done your research, the interview is nothing to worry about. The interview is just designed to filter out people who are planning to use a student visa to work or holiday in the UK.

How will the interview happen?

Your visa interview will normally take place in your local Visa Application Centre, via a secure telecommunications system.

How should I prepare for a credibility interview?

Do some detailed research; make sure you know about LFA and are able to explain why you chose it. What appeals to you about the local area, the courses offered and the teaching style?

What questions will I be asked in a visa interview?

Below are some examples of questions you may be asked. Think carefully before answering, because your answers may raise concern with interviewers, if they think you are not taking the process seriously. Be honest and avoid yes and no answers as much as possible. Try to speak naturally. Below are some typical questions that you may be asked. What was the last course you studied, and what have you been doing since completing it? Do you have any future career plans? How will you fund your studies? Did you consider any other courses? Why did you choose to study at LFA? Why do you want to study in the UK?

What if my student visa is refused?

If you receive a visa refusal, inform the LFA Admissions Team as soon as possible who will advise you based on the reasons for refusal letter. In the case of when an Administrative Review is appropriate you have 28 days to submit to the UKVI and contest the decision made. The LFA Admissions Team can help you with this process. You will need to respond in writing to each of the points raised in the refusal.

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