If the UK is your preferred study destination, you made a wish decision there. Now, you have to beat the student visa interview and move to the UK. Unfortunately, this is the part where some students become nervous and eventually fail the visa interview. But don’t worry. In this post, we will talk about the UK student visa interview questions and answers to help you through the interview. Note that this is just one aspect of your preparation. The success rate of UK student visa as of 2020 was 95.77%, and the UK student visa rejection rate was only 3.78%. That’s some good figures. In 2020-2024, some sources claim that the UK student visa rejection rate is just 2%, which is also a good number.
If you plan to study in the UK soon, you should know that an interview with visa officials is part of the process. This post will help you understand what those questions might be, so you can prepare ahead and be stress-free on your interview day. The student visa interview is often referred to as the Credibility Interview. The officials want to interview you to ensure you are applying for a visa to study in the UK for genuine reasons and not for the wrong reasons. The interview could be at a Visa center or online through Skype or Zoom. You just need to know how your interview will be conducted so you can prepare properly.
UK Student Visa Questions and Answers
We are going to look at 10 very common questions you will be asked during your UK student visa interview. You do not need any script whatsoever to ace this interview – all you really need are direct answers to the questions. You do not also want to give the visa officer the impression that you will not be returning to your home country after studying. That said, let’s get into the various questions, so you can start now to prepare the best answers for them.
1. Have you ever been to the UK or been rejected before?
As part of the UK student visa interview questions, you’ll be asked if you’ve ever been to the UK or if you have had a UK visa rejected before. If you have had another visa rejected, don’t mention it unless they ask about that specific country. Some people believe that earlier rejections reduce your chance of success. No, the officer won’t judge your current application by your previous outcome.
2. Do you plan to return to the UK after your studies?
They might ask if you plan to return to the UK for further studies after getting a UK degree. This is the trickiest question, but you must not give an answer that shows that you will return to the UK after your studies. The truth is that you have to give answers that eliminate the possibility of staying back in the UK. The embassy looks out for these signs to determine whether to reject your student visa application or not.
3. Why choose the UK and not your home country?
You’ll also be asked why you chose the UK for your college studies and not your home country or another country. A lot of students throw themselves off balance with their responses. Your simple response should be about what the UK has about this course that others do not. If possible, briefly talk about trends related to this course, for example, what the UK government and schools have recently introduced in that field that caught your interest.
4. How many universities have you applied to?
Expect UK student visa interview questions about how many universities you applied to, which ones they were, which ones accepted you, and why you chose this particular university over others. Here, you should explain why you picked this university based on your research, university rankings, or other factors. They might ask about professors’ names if you received a scholarship, and where your university campus is located. They don’t expect the full address, but you should know the basic location—the town or city.
5. What is your course of study and why did you choose it?
They’ll ask about the course you’re going to take and why you chose it. You should be able to explain this decision, whether it is because of career prospects, how it connects to your past education, your interest in the subject, or any other reason. Just be sure you can back up your answer.
They might ask you if your chosen course is relevant to your previous studies. Another question to prepare for is about the structure and content of the course. You don’t need to know every detail, but you should have a general understanding. They may also ask why you didn’t pursue this course in your home country. You can explain that the courses back home weren’t as comprehensive as those in the UK, which is why you chose to study there.
6. What is the duration of your studies?
Expect questions about the duration of your studies and when your course begins. You selected this course of study and did the necessary registrations, so you should know the duration. Usually, after this question, you may be asked what your plans are once the duration comes to an end. This is usually a trick to get you to say that you might stay back in the UK.
7. Who is your sponsor?
Another important topic is your personal and financial situation. You will also be asked a common question about who is sponsoring your studies. Be clear whether it’s your parents, your savings, or a bank loan. You should know the amount of your tuition fees and how much you have already paid. A lot of students actually get refused due to not being clear about their funding, The UK already has a lot of people seeking help from the government, so they are not ready to add to the number.
Be ready to discuss how much money you need for tuition and living expenses in the UK. If your parents are sponsoring you, they might ask about their income source and how they earn their money. They may request proof that your sponsor can support your studies, inquire if they have other dependents, and whether they can sponsor you throughout your stay in the UK. This could include showing bank statements or income proof.
8. What is your marital status?
This is one of the UK student visa interview questions you may come across, and it does not matter if you register this information already during the whole process. Now, many families use the study route to move to the UK with their family, and the embassy is aware. Thus, the embassy wants to establish if you are a risk (such as someone who will be looking to work while on a student visa to bring in their family). A lot of married people do this.
Next up, you might also be asked about your marital status. If you are married, they’ll want to know if your spouse is coming with you to the UK. If they are staying back, you should be ready to talk about their qualifications, their current job, and if they have been to the UK before, either for work or study. They might also inquire if you have siblings, particularly if any of them are in the UK, either studying or working now or in the past. Questions about your family’s income could come up too.
9. Why do you want to study in the UK?
Another question they’ll likely ask is why you specifically want to study in the UK. This includes discussing your career and personal goals. It’s important to have a well-thought-out plan, not just something you made up suddenly. You need to convincingly explain that studying in the UK is essential for your plans to succeed. You’ll probably be asked if you plan to stay in the UK after completing your course or if you’ll return to your home country. The ideal response is that you plan to return home. When they ask about returning, they might ask for proof. If you intend to go back, you could mention having family back home or wanting to use the skills you learned in the UK to start something new or advance your career in your home country. They might also ask you about your plans after returning home.
10. How fluently do you speak English?
You will also be asked about how fluently you speak English if you are not from an English-speaking country. The embassy will focus on your English communication skills since courses in the UK are taught in English and you’ll be communicating in English there. Your ability to speak and understand English is important, and is taken into consideration. This question is particularly important because there have been cases where students faked their IELTS exams or presented false certificates. You need to understand that such actions can lead to visa rejection or cancellation. Be honest. You’ll likely be asked which English proficiency test you took and your score. Make sure to accurately state your test and score, and have proof ready.
UK Student Visa Preparation Process
So, we have looked at the common UK student visa interview questions. Now, let’s talk about the visa process.
1. Be Early Whether Online or In-Person
If your interview is in person, you have to arrive early and make sure you have everything you need. It is always better to be over-prepared than to have issues. If it’s an online visa interview, download and install the necessary software, whether it’s Zoom or Skype, well before the interview. Also, remember to dress appropriately. You are attending an interview, and these officials are not your friends. Dressing too casually might be seen as a sign that you’re not taking this seriously, so wear the right clothes.
2. Make Yourself Fully Prepared
The second important thing is that you need to be well-prepared. You should be ready to show the officials any documents they ask for, which are likely to be proof of what you’re saying during the interview. Also, be ready for the types of questions they’ll ask and have suitable answers prepared. If you’re unprepared and start to fumble during the interview, it could look like you haven’t prepared or you’re lying. Either could lead to your visa being rejected, which is definitely something you want to avoid.
3. Practice Beforehand
Set up practice interviews with friends or family and go through multiple rounds of preparation. I personally don’t recommend practicing in front of a mirror because it distracts me, but if it helps you, then go for it. Another tip is to be as honest as you can. These officials interview hundreds, maybe thousands, of students, and they can easily tell if you’re not being truthful. So, don’t lie—it’s in your best interest.
4. Stay Calm During the Student Visa Interview
Finally, stay calm during the interview. Listen to each question fully before you start answering. Take a deep breath, and then respond. You’ll find it much easier. Now, let’s talk about the questions. They typically fall into different categories, and the first set of questions you should expect will be about your immigration and educational history.
So, we have covered the common UK student visa interview questions. You need to understand that this is just an interview, and no script is required. Even the visa official may not know what question they will be asking, but we have touched on all the common questions they ask. This entire interview is a test, and you have to be 100% natural if you are to be successful. During the interview, I’ll mention again that you have to stay calm. Get rid of any form of nervousness. Before the interview, you can always review your personal statement thoroughly. With this guide, you should be ready to do your best.