Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS)

The Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS) is a Government verification scheme for International students. ATAS is compulsory for the majority of International offer holders (see exemptions below) who are applying for a programme that requires ATAS clearance. This includes current students who wish to change programmes from a non-ATAS programme to an ATAS programme, student visitors and study abroad students.

Do I need to provide an ATAS clearance certificate?

Having an ATAS clearance certificate is mandatory for some undergraduate applicants who wish to study in the UK.

This will affect you if are from outside the UK and you plan to undertake any of the following undergraduate courses:


  • H402 MEng Aerospace Engineering with Pilot Studies
  • H404 MEng Aerospace Engineering with Pilot Studies with a year in Industry
  • H421 MEng Aerospace Engineering
  • H422 MEng Aerospace Engineering with a year in Industry
  • H301 MEng Mechanical Engineering
  • H303 MEng Mechanical Engineering with a year in Industry

Electrical Engineering and Electronics

  • H431 MEng Avionic Systems Studies
  • H412 Avionic Systems MEng (Hons) with a year in Industry


  • FGH1 MMath Mathematical Physics
  • F344 MPhys Theoretical Physics


  • F303 MPhys Physics
  • F309 Physics with a Year Abroad MPhy

If the criteria above apply to you and you do not have an ATAS certificate, your Entry Clearance application will be refused.

It is your responsibility to check if this scheme applies to you.

What is a CAH3 code?

The Common Aggregation Hierarchy (CAH) has now replaced JACS codes for ATAS purposes.

You will only need a CAH3 code if you are applying for a programme that requires an Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS) certificate.

If this is the case, you will receive an ATAS Statement from us containing the relevant CAH3 code. This will enable you to submit an application with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

If your programme does not fall under the ATAS scheme you will not need a CAH3 code and an ATAS certificate will not be required.

Further Information


Please note, the following nationals are exempt from ATAS: 

  • EU nationals
  • EEA nationals
  • Australia
  • Canada
  • Japan
  • New Zealand
  • Singapore
  • South Korea
  • Switzerland
  • USA

Click on the following links to download further information:

Further Information

The ATAS application is an online only process and is free of charge. The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) aim to process applications within 30 working days after the submission of the application. Processing times will increase between the months of April and September and can take longer to complete. Details of applying for ATAS can be found on the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office website.

If you require further help please contact

Information and assistance is also available from:

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