Information for prospective undergraduate and postgraduate students from the EU who have applied to study at Heriot-Watt University.

EU student applicants

We want to reassure European applicants of our commitment to you and everyone in our global community.

If you are a new student from the EU, EEA or Switzerland, and plan to start your studies in 2022-2023 or later, your tuition fees are likely to be in line with the international rate.

For up to date information on tuition fees for new students from the EU, EEA or Switzerland, please visit our Tuition Fees page.

Am I still eligible for a tuition fee loan from the Scottish Government?

If you are starting a full-time postgraduate programme in the 2020/21 academic year – which includes programmes starting in January 2021 – the answer is yes. For information on the loan programme, how to apply, requirements, etc., visit the Student Awards Agency Scotland website.

Will I have to apply for a student visa?

It depends on when you arrive in the UK. EU citizens who arrive in the UK before 11pm GMT on 31 December 2020 are eligible to apply for pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme. Applying for pre-settled status is free and fairly straightforward, and it allows you to live, study and work in the UK for 5 years. This means that you can enter the UK using either your EU passport or national identity card, without applying for a visa, and that you'll still receive healthcare coverage, have the right to work, and so on, just like before Brexit. The deadline to submit your application for pre-settled status in 30 June 2021 BUT remember you must arrive by 31 December 2020 to be eligible, and you'll need to make sure you get your pre-settled status application approved before you leave the UK.

If you are unable to travel to the UK by 31 December 2020, then you will need apply for a student visa before you come to the UK. The visa will cover you for the duration of your studies. The visa fee is £348, and you'll also need to pay an immigration health surcharge to cover your access to the National Health Service (NHS), which costs £470 a year (as of 27 October 2020). It's important to note that the student visa does have some restrictions – for example, you can't work more than 20 hours a week during term time (up to 40 hours a week during breaks). The visa application process can take several weeks, and you will need to obtain specific documentation from Heriot-Watt before you can apply.

Can I stay and work in the UK after I complete my degree?

Yes, but how it works will depend on your status in the UK. If you arrive in the UK by 31 December 2020, and obtain pre-settled status (see above), then you'll be able to stay in the UK for 5 years. After that point, if you meet certain residency criteria, you'll be able to apply to stay in the UK permanently.

If you arrive in the UK on or after 1 January 2021, the student visa you obtain will cover you for the duration of your programme (usually with a few extra months at the end). If you successfully complete and graduate from your programme, you can apply to stay in the UK for another 2 years on a post-study work visa. This is a new scheme due to be launched in summer 2021, so more details will be available later on.

Are Europeans welcome in Scotland?

Very much so. Although the UK electorate voted to leave the European Union in 2016, connections between Scotland and the EU are still very strong. Scotland is a diverse country, home to people from all over the world, and European students are very welcome in our communities.

Heriot-Watt is a global university with strong and abiding links across Europe and the rest of the world. Nearly half of the students studying at our Scottish campuses come from abroad, and of those nearly one in ten are from Europe. In addition, many of our academic and professional staff are from Europe and elsewhere around the world.

The decision by the UK electorate to leave the European Union has not changed our mission. We are proud to be a global university, a community of scholars welcoming all those who can contribute to our work and society.


We look forward to welcoming you to Heriot-Watt University going forward, and should you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact us at

Key information

Admissions Office