If you are a Tier 4 / Student visa holder, there are certain requirements you must meet before being permitted to change your programme of study and remain on your current visa.
You should be able to change your programme without first needing a new visa if your new course:
- has the same mode of attendance and
- is within the same subject area and
- is at the same level and
- you can finish your new course within the validity of your current visa
If your request does not meet these requirements, you may have to leave the UK in order to apply for a new Tier 4 / Student visa for your new course.
If your new course is shorter than your previous one the University will report this change of end date to UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI). You will not need to get a new visa, but you should be aware that your visa validity will be reduced to reflect the new end date.
In certain situations, the rules on changing programme are applied differently:
- Adding a year of industrial placement/study abroad - you will need to apply for new (longer) visa but can do this at any time before or after your period of industrial placement or study abroad
- Integrated programme students - whether you are downgrading or upgrading you will need to apply for a new visa before changing programmes. If you are upgrading, for example, Bachelors to Masters (eg BEng to MEng), you can submit a visa application in the UK. However if you are downgrading, you must apply for your visa from outside the UK.
How to change programme
You will need to submit a Change of Programme form through your College or supervisor. Make sure you follow the correct process depending on your level of study:
When you submit a change of programme request that will require you to get a new visa, we will contact you with advice particular to your situation. We would also recommend that you speak to your personal tutor or programme leaders for academic advice and guidance.