What Is a Student Visa

Student visas are essential travel documents for people planning to travel abroad for study.

To study at a university or another educational institution in a foreign country, you must have a suitable student visa first before you can begin your course.

Find out more about how these documents work below and what you can do to obtain one.

Student Visa Definition

A student visa is a travel authorization issued by countries around the world. It permits foreign students to study at a university or college within its national territory.

This give holders the permission to enter the country and live within its borders for the duration of their course.

Unlike other online visas or visa waivers for tourists, holders can stay in another country for over a year at a time. In some countries you can also take up employment as long as you follow a few conditions based on the type of job and the number of hours worked.

Can I Study Abroad Using a Visa Waiver?

A visa waiver can sometimes also be used to study in another country. However, these may only be used for short term courses lasting under 3-6 months. These also do not usually permit you to work in your country of study either.

How to Get a Student Visa

It is necessary to apply for a student visa before you begin studying abroad. The exact process of getting this permit always depends on where you plan to live and study.

It will, however, always involve submitting crucial personal identification documents and a completed application form at the very least.

In some countries, you may also have to attend an interview to assess your eligibility for the visa or submit biometric information before you can be accepted for a student visa.

Where to Apply for a Student Visa

In some cases, you can apply online for your student visa. Other countries require you to visit their national embassy in your home country in order to submit your application.

The method for applying for a student visa application, however, depends on the country you intend to study in and its visa requirements for your nationality.

What Documents Are Needed for a Student Visa?

The document requirements for student visas varies in each country. However, in the majority of cases you’ll need to provide the following items to be accepted for your visa:

  • Your national passport
  • A letter of acceptance from a learning institution
  • Proof of sufficient funds to support yourself
  • Parental consent if you’re under 18 years old

How Long Does a Student Visa Last?

Student visas permit holders to live in their country of study for a number of months or years consecutively. However, their length ultimately depends on the duration of your course of study.

For example, in the United States, you will be granted leave to remain with a student visa up until 60 days after you graduate from your course.

Additionally, these visas can often be extended if you wish to take on further study after your original course is completed.