Some people who will continue their studies abroad definitely need good preparation. However, many still feel 100% ready as long as they have received a Letter of Acceptance, funding/scholarship and accommodation guarantee. Even though there is still one step that needs to be considered carefully: applying for a study visa. If this step fails, you will have to repeat the application process from the beginning and may have to pay another fee.
You need to know a few things about a study abroad visa.
What is a Study Visa
As the name suggests, a Study visa is a visa that a person needs when going to study (college or school) abroad. The function is the same as a regular visa, namely a residence permit in a country that is not the country of origin. However, it only applies to studying while running a college or school within a certain period. Without this visa, the completion of your studies in the destination country is unattainable, even if you have received official acceptance from the university.
This visa is exclusively designed for studying, meaning you are prohibited from engaging in other activities such as working, establishing a business, or participating in official political affairs as long as you hold this Visa. However, in certain countries, such as the Netherlands, limited part-time work may still be permissible, with specific restrictions on working hours.
Because it is only valid during the study period (for example, four or two years of study), after your studies are completed, you must also go home immediately. You cannot continue to live there on a study visa.
If you want to continue to work or travel, you must renew your residence permit by making a work visa or visit visa. Each country has its policy for study visas, so make sure you check first at the embassy/consultant of your destination country what is the name or type of study visa there. In Australia, they categorize study visas into various classes based on the course you intend to pursue.
Every Country Has Different Requirements
The requirements or procedures for making a Study visa in each country may vary, although they are generally similar. Some countries require you to have a certificate of being free from certain diseases, and some need you to attach a certificate of relationship with the person who pays for your tuition if you do not use a scholarship. For that, you must ask in detail about the requirements for a Study visa for the country you are going to.
Knowing the Process and Manufacturing Costs
Generally, the registration process can be done online. You will only get a call to come to do the actual document submission process and interview. Like a Visit Visa, applying for a Study visa is also subject to a fee you must pay off when you start the application process. The amount of the payment itself is different in each country. As for the manufacturing process, it usually takes one to three weeks, depending on the embassy or consulate.
Anticipating Failure to Make a Study visa
The difficulty in making a Study visa is relatively relative. The process should run smoothly if you have appropriately fulfilled all the document requirements and completed the costs.
However, many individuals often encounter problems or even experience failures due to the tight submission timeline. It becomes evident that incorrect or insufficient documents are present, and consequently, there isn’t enough time to rectify the issues. For that, register as early as possible, so you have enough time if there are problems with document requirements.
In addition, you also need to prepare yourself for the interview process. Show that you are ready to study and live in the country by mastering the material or knowledge about the university and study program you choose. Make it clear that you are not going there to study, not because you want to stay and travel.
After you know about a study visa, it would be nice if you know how to get your study visa fully approved, you can see these five steps.
1. Check Your Language Certificate
You need a language certificate to apply for a study abroad visa.
Depending on the language of your course, your country of destination may require you to attach a certificate of results from a language test such as IELTS or GDS to apply for a Visa. But keep in mind that some language test certificates have a validity period. For example, TOEFL and TCF certificates are only valid for two years. When submitting, your test results must still be valid. Otherwise, you will need to retake the test.
Some language tests have different types, so you must take the proper language test. For example, IELTS has two types of tests: Academic and General. For college matters, you must take IELTS Academic. It’s different from the TOEFL, which consists of 4 types: IBT, CBT, PBT and ITP. The certificate containing the results from these four types of tests can be employed for college-related purposes. However, the ITP type is generally not internationally recognized.
Hence, you can only opt for this test if your intended university abroad is open to acknowledging a TOEFL ITP certificate. This is due to the fact that the TOEFL ITP is presently not widely adopted by overseas universities.
2. Check Photo and Document Requirements
Read and follow all Visa photo and document requirements to the best of your ability. Should your photo fail to adhere to regulations (for instance, incorrect size or background color) or if your document remains incomplete, there’s a possibility that your application could face rejection, necessitating a restart from the initial stages.
You can visit studios with experience making Visa photos to avoid photo problems.
To help complete the documents, you can make a file checklist that includes information on costs, terms and the period needed to obtain these documents. These documents include,
- Valid passport (minimum six months)
- KTP/Family Card/birth certificate
- Visa application form
- Letter of Acceptance from the destination university
- Passport photo
- Proof of financial guarantees such as scholarships/study sponsors, or if using personal fees, attach proof of the ability of funds to finance the study
- Visa payment proof
- Last education certificate
- The results of the English test score or the language of the country of interest
3. Check Blank Pages In the Passport
Ensure that your passport contains 4-6 blank pages. While the study visa occupies just one page, many countries require at least two facing blank pages within the passport for the Visa application process. If blank pages are lacking during submission, officials will request you to renew your passport. Naturally, this situation will cause a delay in your Visa processing.
In addition, also check the validity period of your passport. Some countries require that your passport be valid for at least 6 months from the date you entered the country for Visa approval.
4. Schedule as early as possible to apply for a study visa
Study visas may take several weeks to process. Therefore, schedule a Visa application as soon as possible at the embassy/consulate of your destination country. If you submit the application too close to the departure date, there’s a potential risk that the authorities might not process your Visa before your departure.
When scheduling, confirm the location of the Visa application.
This needs to be considered because some embassies have delegated Visa processing to other agencies, such as a UK study visa which can only be submitted at VFS Global.
5. Translate and Photocopy All Documents
All documents in Indonesian that are part of the Visa requirements need to be translated into English by a sworn translator. Some embassies/consulates have a list of sworn translators you can contact to translate your documents. However, if the translators on the list are busy, you can also look for other certified translator services on the Translator Association website.
It’s important to complete this step well ahead of your scheduled Visa application, allowing time for revisions in case of translation errors. Certain embassies/consulates may require both original documents and photocopies for Visa requirements. In addition to ensuring the clarity of the photocopies, you should also verify whether specific agencies require the photocopies to undergo legalization. During submission, it’s advisable to request confirmation from the receiving officer regarding the acceptability of the provided photocopies.
As a precaution, you should keep a copy of all Visa application files because there is a possibility that you will need the information contained there.
Therefore, meticulously prepare your study abroad plan, and hopefully, the aforementioned tips prove valuable for individuals aiming to secure swift approval of their study visas. Finding it difficult to apply for a study visa? Don’t worry, IstudentPlus can also help you apply for a study visa until you get it. So what are you waiting for, contact us, and everything will be easy.