The Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS) is a system designed by the UK government to check and approve international students who will study at postgraduate level or complete research in science and technology subjects. If you are from outside the EU, you may need to apply for an ATAS certificate and it is used in support of your visa application.
Learn more about the Academic Technology Approval Scheme for international students below and if you are an international student interested in UK postgraduate or research study, arrange a free consultation with SI-UK London or Manchester today.
Academic Technology Approval Scheme FAQ
When should I apply for ATAS clearance?
Your ATAS certificate will be valid for six months from its date of issue and you can apply up to six months in advance of the beginning of your course or research. For example, if you wish to begin studying in September 2021, you should not begin your application until March 2021.
It is advised you begin your application as soon as you are able to as it can take up to 20 working days for it to be successfully processed.
How much does an ATAS certificate cost?
An ATAS certificate is completely free.
I have obtained ATAS clearance for a different course or university. What do I need to do?
ATAS clearance is specific to the programme of study or research and institution. If you change course or university, then you must apply again for ATAS clearance.
Can I have multiple ATAS applications with different universities?
You can submit multiple ATAS applications for different courses/universities at the same time, but each application needs to be made individually.
What if I change my area of research or course?
You must apply for a new ATAS clearance certificate in any of the following circumstances:
- The course (or research) completion date is postponed for a period of more than three calendar months
- There are any changes to the course content (or research proposal). If you are studying a PhD course, this includes changes other than minor variations to the areas of research or to the use of any new research technique
- You wish to start a new course that requires ATAS clearance
- You move to another institution
Will I need a new ATAS certificate if I extend my visa for further study?
If you require an ATAS certificate and you need to extend your visa, you will need to apply again.
Can my visa be refused without an ATAS certificate?
ATAS clearance is a requirement of the Tier 4 General visa and failure to provide your certificate with your visa application could lead to an immigration refusal.
Your ATAS Certificate
If you have any more questions about the Academic Technology Approval Scheme or wish to begin your application, arrange a free consultation with SI-UK London or Manchester today.