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Transferring to a new programme of study

Transferring to a new programme of study

If you hold Tier 4 immigration permission it is very important that you understand how a change of programme will affect this. This is explained on our Changes to your programme of studies webpage.

If you want to change to a new programme of study, either at Queen Mary University of London or elsewhere, there are two potential options: transferring, or withdrawing and reapplying. The key difference between transferring and withdrawing is that if you are offered a transfer from one programme of study to another, this means that you have a guaranteed place on a new programme of study (although as a formality if you are an undergraduate you may need to also apply through UCAS). Whereas if you withdraw, you cease to be a student and your university records will be terminated - if you want to return to Queen Mary then you will need to start all over again and apply for your place (through UCAS if you are undergraduate).

It is up to the institution running the programme of study that you want to change onto, whether they will accept you as a transfer student, or whether they need you to withdraw from your current programme of study and apply as a completely new student for the new programme of study.

To change to a new degree course, either at Queen Mary or elsewhere, you might need to apply again through UCAS. However, depending on the time of year, and your circumstances, the new course might agree to accept a direct application from you which means you would not normally need to apply through UCAS.

New students transferring to Queen Mary should contact the Admissions Office for advice about joining a programme of study. Also read the information about transfers and advanced entry .

Current students who want to transfer to another University or transfer to a new course at Queen Mary should contact their School and the Student Enquiry Centre.

The Queen Mary Student Transfer Policy is available on the Admissions Policies and Procedures page.

If you are considering transferring to another University you could also contact the the Admissions Office at that university for advice about their procedures and what they require you to do.

You need to complete the relevant forms to transfer courses within Queen Mary or to leave your current programme of study and transfer to a new University:

  • To transfer to another course at QMUL - complete a Change of Programme of Study form available from the ‘your study’ section of Queen Mary Academic Registry webpages
  • To transfer to a course at a different university – complete the relevant section of the Withdrawal of Study form also available on

You can also collect the forms from the Student Enquiry Centre, ground floor, Queens’ Building, Mile End campus, the Student Office at the Whitechapel campus or the  reception. The guidance notes accompanying the forms explain how to fill them out and where to submit them. 


What should I consider?

Will my Tier 4 Immigration Permission be affected?

Yes it could be.  The Tier 4 immigration rules limit the number of years a student can study in the UK on a Tier 4 visa so you need to check that you will be able to complete your new course withing the time permitted.  You can read about the time limit on our Time Limit Cap on Studies page. 

If you remain at Queen Mary you need to check that Queen Mary can continue to sponsor your study and if you can continue to use your existing Tier 4 Immigration permission or if you will need new Tier 4 immigration permission for your new course.

If you transfer to a new University, Queen Mary must report this to the Home Office who will curtail (cut short) your current Tier 4 immigration permission for Queen Mary. You cannot study at another institution using Tier 4 immigration permission issued for Queen Mary.  You must check that your new institution will be able to issue you with a CAS as you will require new Tier 4 immigration permission to study with them.

If you require new Tier 4 immigration permission it may not be possible to make the application in the UK.  If you cannot apply in the UK you will have to leave the UK and return home to make your application.

For more information read the section of this guide 'Immigration implications'.

Also see the section of this advice guide “Leaving your studies completely (withdrawing/deregistration)”. 

What else will be affected?

As well as the academic implications, transferring courses within Queen Mary or to another University may affect your accommodation.

If you live in University owned accommodation and intend to transfer to another University contact Queen Mary Residential Services for advice about ending your contract and moving out. Queen Mary Residential services also provides private sector housing advice.  If you rent privately and have signed a tenancy agreement you need check if you can end your Tenancy early.

For further information about this and other factors that will be affected visit the section of this guide called 'Practicalities if you are no longer in attendance'.

If you are an EU/EEA/Swiss national and will have a gap between courses so intend to leave the UK until you resume your study, you should read our about Brexit as its important to consider how an absence from the UK could affect your long term options and right to live in the UK in the future.

What about my Tuition Fees?

For information about tuition fee liability read the section of this guide ' Tuition Fees and Refunds'.


Law, regulations and policies can change quickly. The information on our website is given in good faith and has been carefully checked but QMUL cannot accept responsibility for any errors or omissions. QMUL is not responsible for the content or reliability of the linked websites which are provided for further information.

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