If you are an international student and planning to study in Switzerland, different conditions apply for citizens who are from a country in the European Union or European Free Trade Association (EFTA) (EU countries plus Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland). If you are not an EU/EFTA citizen, the information below outlines the Swiss student visa requirements and conditions. The information given here is for guidance only and you should seek specific advice from the Swiss Federal Office for Migration (FOM) or from the Swiss embassy or consulate in your home country- https://www.eda.admin.ch/countries/usa/en/home/visa/entry-residency/visa.html .
Visas and permits to study in Switzerland
If you want to come to Switzerland to study at SwissUniHEI, first
you must find a course and get accepted onto it. Once you have
confirmation that you have a place (a certificate of enrolment), you
can apply for a visa (if you need one) to study in Switzerland.
Certain nationalities will require a visa to enter Switzerland. You can check to see if you need a visa here. For courses of up to three months - summer courses, language schools - you may need a short-term Schengen C visa; for courses longer than three months, you may need a long-term national D visa.
You cannot come to Switzerland on a three-month tourist visa and change it to a student residence permit after you have arrived in Switzerland. Thus, even if you are exempt from needing an entry visa, such as Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Japan, Malaysia or Singapore nationals, you will still need to apply for a residence permit before you arrive if you plan to stay longer than 90 days.
Applying for a Swiss visa
You'll need to apply for a visa through the Swiss embassy or
consulate in your home country-
https://www.eda.admin.ch/eda/en/home/reps.html. You'll need to
complete an application form and submit supporting documentation, in
French, German or English, so you may need to translate your
For short-term Schengen C visas, documentation includes:
- a valid passport/travel ID;
- proof of adequate financial resources to cover your costs while you're in Switzerland;
- healthcare/accident insurance;
- confirmation of booked courses including fees paid;
- if you're under 18, a birth certificate and authorisation to travel if coming to Switzerland alone, or copies of parents' visas if they will be accompanying.
For a long-term D visas, documents will include:
- a valid passport/travel ID.
- proof of adequate financial resources to cover your costs while you're in Switzerland, whether yourself or a sponsor, such as copies of bank statements or a letter from the bank.
- proof of healthcare insurance which includes cover for accidents.
- motivation letter outlining why you want to come to Switzerland to study and how this will be beneficial to your career.
- confirmation of enrolment at SwissUniHEI.
- confirmation of course fees paid.
- your CV.
- copies of previous educational certificates and diplomas.
- a signed letter confirming that you will leave Switzerland
at the end of the course.
You need to make two copies of all of these documents, and take along the originals when applying for your visa at the embassy - these all need to be in either English, German, Italian or French (if not, you need to have them translated).
In Switzerland, health insurance is mandatory for all residents. Students from foreign countries must purchase their own health insurance policy if they intend to live in Switzerland for more than three months. This does not apply to students from countries which provide international coverage or offer equivalent insurance protection.
You may also be asked to sit a language test to make sure that you will be able to follow lessons. If you want to undertake post-graduate studies, you'll need to submit proof that you've been admitted to a post-grad course and have the appropriate qualifications, sufficient financial means and somewhere to live.