Students in the UK spend between four and six years of study at medical school before applying to enter a two-year foundation programme.
The majority of UK medical graduates progress onto the foundation programme and then on to GP or specialty training.
Read more about the UK medical training pathway.
Before applying for a visa
The UK immigration system is based on a points-based system.
International medical students apply for a general student visa (tier 4).
Before applying for your visa, you must have an unconditional offer of a place at medical school and enough money to support yourself and pay for your course.
The earliest you can apply for a visa is three months before you start your course and you will usually get a decision about your visa within three weeks.
- Access our online library
- Get medical books posted to you for free
- Access our huge range of learning resources
Membership is free for students in your first year.
Submitting your visa application
- A tier 4 visa currently costs £348.
- The health surcharge costs £300 a year and you will need to pay this upfront for the duration of your course. The charge is to fund your own healthcare when living in the UK.
- Include your confirmation of acceptance of studies reference number on your visa application.
- Only submit your application when you are sure you have submitted all the requested documents.
Biometric residence permit
Remember, before you start your course, you must have your biometric residence permit. You will get one automatically when your visa is approved. You can then use this to confirm your identity, right to study or work in the UK and right to any public services or benefits you’re entitled to.
When you have met all of the criteria, the Home Office will grant you a visa for the duration of your course.