UK Short Term Study Visa Multiple Entry for a Genuine Student

This post relates to genuineness requirements as a short-term student and for undertaking study in the UK as Part of a Course. The post also highlights the definition of Higher Education Institution (HEI) in the UK and clarifies issues relating to employment as a short-term student.

UK Short Term Student Visa Multiple Entry

Who is a Genuine Short-Term Student?

UK Short Term Study Visa Multiple Entry for a Genuine Student

An applicant needs to satisfy in his/her visa application that he/she is a genuine short-term student, and should satisfy the following points:

  • furnishes a true account of the duration he/she intends to study in the United Kingdom;
  • genuinely intends to study in the UK on a course that will be either completed during his/her stay in the UK or in agreement with the provisions set out for study in the UK for part of a course;
  • genuinely intends/plans to study a course at an accredited institution;
  • is not intending to study at a state-maintained school/institution for instance:
    • one that provides free education and is mainly funded through public funds;
    • a short-term student can study at a UK Higher Education Institution (university) if the student pays fees;
  • is not intending to live in the UK through frequent/successive periods of study;
  • has enough money to support himself/herself;
  • intends/plans to leave the UK at the end of the study period.

Short-Term Study in the UK as Part of a Course

A genuine short-term student applicant, who intends to complete part of a study course in the UK needs to satisfy the following criteria in the visa application:

  • the student needs to clarify that he/she is studying outside the UK for a UK qualification (for instance, by distance learning);
  • the applicant/student is on a course that is longer than six (6) months;
  • the student is required to spend a period of time in the United Kingdom studying as part of the course;
  • the student is not spending more than six (6) months studying in the UK on any single occasion;

A student who is either re-sitting a formal examination or retaking a study module, or a postgraduate student who is taking his/her oral (viva) examination, can also apply as a short-term student if the study course does not take more than six (6) months on any occasion.

If the student is spending multiple periods in the UK, then he/she needs to clarify that his/her frequent/successive study visits do not mean he/she is full-time studying in the UK. For instance, student spending some months studying in the UK, leave the UK for a few days and then return for a further period of study.

Definition of Higher Education Institution (HEI)

A UK HEI is a recognised body or a body, which receives public funds as a higher education institution from at least either one or more of the followings:

  • Higher Education Funding Council for England;
  • Department for Employment & Learning in Northern Ireland;
  • Higher Education Funding Council for Wales;
  • Scottish Funding Council;

Moreover, HM’s Home Office also accepts the following educational institutions as HEIs:

  • Richmond, the American International University in London as it is recognised in the statute in the Education Order 2006 (Recognised Awards) (Richmond The American International University in London);
  • Health Education South London as an HEI for sponsored students who were assigned a certificate of acceptance for studies (CAS) between 1 July 2015 to 31 October 2016 to undertake a recognised Foundation Programme for postgraduate doctors and dentists;
  • Health Education England as an HEI for the sponsored student to take a recognised Foundation Programme for postgraduate doctors and dentists from 1 November 2016;

Short-Term Students and Employment

In the UK, short-term students are not allowed to work, either in a paid or an unpaid employment/job. The short-term students are not allowed to enrol in a course of study that includes either a work placement or a work experience.

Short-term students can volunteer but are not allowed to undertake voluntary work.

Voluntary workers:

  • often have a contract with the employer, which means the employer is required to provide work and the voluntary worker is expected to attend at particular times to carry out specific/particular tasks;
  • are also usually remunerated in kind;


  • do not have a contract of employment;
  • must not receive payment in kind but are reimbursement for reasonable travel and subsistence expenses;
  • must not take the place of an employee;
  • generally, help a charity or voluntary or public sector organisation.

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Related: Short-Term Study Visa UK RequirementsShort-Term Study Visa Rules UK  and  English Language Student Visa UK Requirements