Tier 4 (Child) student: eligibility
Produced in partnership with Sarah Rimmington of UKCISA
Tier 4 (Child) student: eligibility

The following Immigration guidance note Produced in partnership with Sarah Rimmington of UKCISA provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Tier 4 (Child) student: eligibility
  • An introduction to the Tier 4 (Child) student route
  • Points scoring—attributes (Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies)
  • Points scoring—maintenance
  • Non points-based criteria
  • General grounds for refusal
  • Is the Tier 4 (Child) category the best option?

This Practice Note outlines the general eligibility requirements for entry clearance and leave to remain applications for Tier 4 (Child) students.

See also Practice Notes: Tier 4 (Child) student: duration and conditions of leave and Tier 4 (Child) student: procedure.

An introduction to the Tier 4 (Child) student route

Tier 4 (Child) student is a points-based system sub-tier for children aged between 4 and 17 years old who wish to study in the UK. See Practice Note: Tier 4 (General) student: eligibility for guidelines on interpreting the Immigration Rules and guidance relating to Tier 4.


Tier 4 (Child) migrants must study at a sponsor registered with the Home Office for this sub-tier. Since 3 August 2015, only independent schools have been permitted to sponsor Tier 4 (Child) students. For information about Tier 4 sponsors and the Tier 4 sponsor guidance (SG) documents which contain the requirements for obtaining and maintaining a sponsor licence, see Practice Note: The status of the Tier 4 sponsor.


As with other Points-Based System categories, the ‘points’ attached to Tier 4 (Child) student requirements have no meaning: if all points-based and non-points-based criteria are met, leave is granted, otherwise leave is refused. However, the Immigration Rules stipulate that a valid confirmation of acceptance for studies (CAS) is worth 30 points and the maintenance requirements are worth ten