A Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) number is a unique 14 digit reference given to you by UCL (your sponsor).
UKVI will use this number to confirm that you are a genuine student. They do this by using it to access your CAS record on their secure database. Your CAS record contains information supplied by UCL to UKVI about you and your course.
You will receive a CAS statement from UCL which contains your CAS number and additional information you will need from UCL to make a Student visa application. A CAS number is valid for use for 6 months from the date it was issued. It can be used only once for a single application. You can only obtain a CAS once you have an unconditional offer.
How to obtain a CAS
UKVI concession regarding use of expired CAS numbers during the Covid-19 pandemic.
UKVI have recently introduced a concession which allows certain students who were assigned a CAS between 24 January 2020 and 31 December 2020, but has since expired, to use this to submit a new visa application in order to continue their studies in the UK.
This means that students who are eligible can use their expired CAS to submit a new visa application, and they will not need to request a new CAS number from UCL.
The Student Immigration Compliance Team will contact you directly if this concession applies to you, however if you do have any questions about this concession, please do contact us via AskUCL.
Please note this concession will be kept under review and so may change at short notice. We will update this webpage when further guidance is provided.
The process is different depending on if you are a:
You do not need to request a CAS. If you have firmly accepted a conditional or unconditional offer UCL will contact you by e-mail approximately four months before the start date of your programme to seek the relevant information. UCL will usually begin assigning CAS numbers no earlier than three months prior to your proposed start date.
You will be asked to confirm that the details we hold about you on record are correct. If anything is incorrect or missing you will be asked to supply this information. Upon receipt of your responses and once your offer is unconditional firm, UCL will aim to issue your CAS within 5 to 10 working days. Once assigned, you will able to access your CAS statement via your Portico account.
CAS numbers are generated by the following offices:
- Undergraduate Students - the Admissions Office, or Faculty of Laws, or Built Environment
- Graduate Students - Admissions Office
- Affiliate Students - Admissions Office
Please note that the Admissions Office are extremely busy over the summer months and will process CASs as quickly as possible. We appreciate your patience during this time.
In order to be issued with a CAS, you will need to complete the CAS request form and send it to the Student Immigration Compliance Team on AskUCL. Please ensure the form has been approved by your Supervisor/Programme tutor/Personal tutor before sending it. Once it has been processed, your CAS will be emailed to your UCL email account. Please allow five working days to receive your CAS.
The UCL Centre for Languages and International Education (CLIE) produces CASs for pre-sessional students as well as undergraduate and postgraduate foundation courses.
Time limits on study
There is a limit on the time a student may spend studying at degree level in the UK.
You are allowed to spend a maximum of 5 years studying in the UK using a Student visa, this includes time spent on a Tier 4 Student Visa and old style student visas prior to Tier 4.
You should ensure that your intended programme of study and any previous programmes of study you have taken in the UK do not take you beyond the five year limit. If they do, we will not issue you a CAS and you will not be able to obtain a Student visa.
There are exceptions to the 5 year limit. These are as follows:
- If you have successfully completed a degree that is 4 years in duration, the limit is 6 years. Please note this does not include additional years taken due to retaking years or re-submissions
- If you are intending to study a postgraduate quaification (including PhD or postgraduate research) approved by the UKVI there is not a limit on the time you can spend studying
- If you have previously completed a PhD and are applying for a further course of study your limit is 8 years
- Some programmes are exempt including, including Architecture and Medicine
- The Doctorate Extension Scheme is also exempt