Student Residence Permit in Turkey

The “General Conditions Regarding Foreign Student Admissions”, that have been accepted by the Council of Higher Education, consist the main framework for the procedures and principles regarding the admissions of foreign students (and those students who have completed their secondary education abroad) to the Turkish higher education institutions.

INTERNATIONAL STUDENT QUOTA

As per article 2 (b) of “General Conditions Regarding Foreign Student Admissions”, Foreign students’ admissions to the Turkish universities are subjected to quotas announced by the Student Selection and Placement Center (OSYM). For undergraduate studies, the quota for foreign students cannot exceed 35% of the quota for undergraduate students in the previous academic year. For Private Non-profit Foundation (Vakıf) Universities, foreign student quota cannot exceed 50% of the quota for undergraduate students in the previous academic year. For 2015-2016 Academic Year Foreign Students Quotas for undergraduate and associate programs, please follow this link. (You will be directed to the Web page of Council of Higher Education. The information listed in tables is both in English and Turkish. Tables, 3A and 3B include quotas for two years associate programs, 4 and 5 includes quotas for four years undergraduate programs.)

TUITION FEES

Minimum and maximum amounts of tuition fees for the programs in the State Universities are determined by the Council of Ministers (Article 5). However on the basis of reciprocity, foreign students might be exempted from tuition fees. Tuition fees for the programs in the Private Non-profit Foundation Universities are determined by authorized boards or higher institutions (Article 6). For detailed information, candidates may consult the websites of the universities.

ELIGIBILITY (Section B)

The following candidates, if they are expected to graduate or already graduated from high school, may apply to Turkish universities.

1) Foreign nationals,

2) Foreigners who are Turkish citizens by birth but later renounced Turkish citizenship by the renunciation permit of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and their minor children registered in the renunciation document.

3) Individuals who acquired Turkish citizenship after birth. (And those who have dual nationalities by acquiring Turkish citizenship after birth)

4) Turkish citizens who have completed the last three years of secondary education abroad except for Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus. (Also those having completed their whole secondary education in Turkish schools abroad in a foreign country other than Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus is also included.)

5) Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus citizens who live in TRNC and have completed their secondary education in TRNC and those TRNC citizens who have studied in colleges and high schools in other countries between 2005-2010, on the condition that they obtain GCE AL Examination results.

On the other hand, except from the cases described above, the following categories of individuals are not eligible to apply to the Turkish universities as international students; (i) Turkish citizens who have completed their whole high school education in Turkey or TRNC, (ii) Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus citizens, (iii) Those dual citizens who have Turkish citizenship by birth, (iv) Dual citizens, one of whose citizenship is of TRNC, (v) Turkish nationals who are studying at foreign high schools in Turkey or in schools that are part of embassies in Turkey.

ADMISSION CONDITIONS OF TURKISH HIGHER EDUCATION INSTITUTIONS

Each higher education institution is required to issue directives or regulations to describe admission requirements for international students by including recognized national and international exams and/or their own entrance examinations, minimum exam scores and grade point of average requirements.

Some common international and national exams are the following : Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT I), American College Testing (ACT), General Certificate of Education (GCE) A Level, International Baccalaureate (IB), Abitur, French Baccalaureate, Matura, Tawjihi Examination held in Jordan and Palestine,Baccalaureate Examination held in Lebanon, Al-Shahada-AlThanawiyya (Baccalaureate) Examination held in Syria,Gaokao held in the People’s Republic of China, and the Senegalese Baccalaureate. Please note that each university determines individually its recognized examinations and scores. For detailed information, candidates may consult the websites of the universities. Alternatively you may follow this link to download the list of recognized international exams and required scores. (You will be directed to the web page of the Council of Higher Education. – The file is available in Turkish)

Moreover foreign students might be asked to provide appropriate documents indicating they have enough funds for living in Turkey during their studies.

All documents required for registration to higher education institutions are determined and announced by the institutions individually. However the most common documents required for registration are as below;

1) Original Exam Results

2) Original high school diploma and transcript and their notarized translations.

3) Equivalence Letter which can obtained from the National Education Directorates in cities in Turkey.

4) Original passport and photocopies of the page bearing the applicant’s identification, and the page bearing student visa obtained from the Turkish consulate.

5) Bank Receipt of the Tuition Fee

6) If applicable, English language proficiency and/ or Turkish language proficiency certificates

Please note that some higher education institutions might ask additional documents.

STUDENT VISA

Foreign students are required to obtain ‘student visa’ from nearest Turkish Consulates prior to their travel to Turkey. Without valid ‘student visa’, Foreigner students may not enroll to the educational institutions in Turkey.

Common documents are;

  • Visa application form
  • Minimum 1 year valid passport
  • An acceptance letter from the Turkish University or school or language course certified by the Ministry of Education
  • Bank statement or sponsor letter, sponsor’s bank statements and passport copy of sponsor.
  • Non-refundable visa fee

Please note that consulates may demand additional documents during the visa application process.

RESIDENCE PERMIT FOR STUDY PURPOSES; (FOREIGN STUDENTS)

Those who will apply for the first time for a residence permit as foreign students should have a student visa obtained from the Turkish consulate in their home countries. After their arrival they need to apply for residence permit within one month.

    • Residence Permit Application Form obtained from e-residence portal (also tax number obtained from tax office)
    • 4 passport-size photos
    • Original passport and photocopies of the following pages of the passport: the page bearing the applicant’s photo, the page stamped at the last entry, the page indicating the validity and expiry dates of the passport and the page bearing student visa obtained from the Turkish consulate.
    • Valid and updated student enrollment certificate obtained from Turkish schools or universities.
    • A bank statement guarantying subsistence, or a letter of undertaking from parents, or if available scholarship documents.
    • For the foreign undergraduate students, “Foreign Students Information Forms” are needed  (may be obtained from local police department’s foreigners’ branch)
    • For those foreign students below 18 years old, deed of consent from parents is required. Deed of consent should be notarized Turkish translation with Apostil.
    • Valid Health Insurance ( one of following health insurances is enough)

*The document that enables benefit from the health services in Turkey within the scope of bilateral social security agreements
*The certificate of authorization received from Social Security Institution
*Proof of application made for general health insurance to Social Security Institution
*Private Health Insurance compatible with Circular Notice no.9 dated 06.06.2014.

Residence permit extension applications should be filled in before the expiry date of the current residence permit.

SOCIAL SECURITY OF FOREIGN STUDENTS

According to article 1, paragraph 2 of the Law No. 6486 on Amending Social Security and General Health Insurance Law and Certain Other Laws, General Health Insurance is not mandatory for foreign students enrolled in Education Institutions in Turkey. All foreign students who are enrolled in the Education Institutions of Turkey might voluntarily register to the GHI, if they fill out an application within three months after their enrollment to the Education Institutions. On the other hand foreign students who have previously enrolled to Education Institutions, by the time that the law no: 6486 is published (Law No. 6486 on Amending Social Security and General Health Insurance Law and Certain Other Laws has been published in Official Gazette on 29 May 2013, No: 28661), they may apply to GHI within six months after the publication date.

Moreover those foreign students who are entitled to social security in their home countries and come from a country where Turkey has a multi-lateral or bilateral social security agreement, upon their submission of following appropriate forms to the Turkish Social Security Institution, they may benefit from health care services in Turkey.

Countries that have signed agreement with Turkey within the scope of Short Term Insurance Branches.

Foreigners who stay for tourism purposes or temporary work purposes

Foreigners sent to continue medical treatment

For permanent residence cases

Family Members of Insurance holder

Foreigners who get monthly salaries in the home countries

Germany T/A 11 T/A 12 T/A 9 T/A 20, T/A23
Austria A/TR 3, A/TR 4 A/TR 4 A/TR 4
The Netherlands N/TUR 111 N/TUR 112 N/TUR 109 N/TUR 121
Belgium B.T.8, BT 15 B.T.10 B.T.6 B.T.16
France SE 208-04 A FT SE 208-06 FT SE 208-07 FT SE 208-09 FT
Turkish republic of Northern Cyprus K.K.T.C. / T.C. 3 K.K.T.C. / T.C. 5 K.K.T.C. / T.C. 6 K.K.T.C. / T.C. 7
F.Y.R.O.Macedonia MC/TR 4 MC/TR 5 MC/TR 6
Romania R/TR 3 R/TR 3 R/TR 6 R/TR4
Albania AL/TR 4 AL/TR 10 TR/AL 5 AL/TR 6
Bosnia and Herzegovina BH/TR4 BH/TR5 BH/TR 6 BH/TR 7
Czech Republic CZ/TR 111 CZ/TR 112
Luxembourg L/TR 3 L/TR 3 L/TR 4 L/TR 5,
Azerbaijan AZ/TR 4 AZ/TR 8 AZ/TR 5 AZ/TR 6

EMPLOYMENT OF FOREIGN STUDENTS

Article 41 of the Law no: 6458 on Foreigners and International Protection grants foreign students with right to work in Turkey. Accordingly;

“Students pursuing basic education, undergraduate, graduate or postgraduate degrees in Turkey may work provided that they obtain a work permit. However, basic education and undergraduate students shall only be given the right to work no more than 24 hours a week following the first year of studies.”

65 Comments

  • Irena

    Hello,
    I have applied for the permit and managed to get an appointment. My question is, where and how do I get the health insurance that is needed considering I do not yet have any official Turkish document?

    • ExpatGuideTurkey

      Hello,
      Thank you for your comment.

      Our company can provide you with health insurance for foreigners in accordance with immigration office’s requirements for residence permit applications. If you are interested in purchasing the insurance, you can contact us at info@expatguideturkey.com

      Best Regards,

      Your thoughts are important to us. Are you satisfied with the answers we have given to your questions? Please rate us and leave a comment.Click here

  • Yahaya

    Hey, am here again. Thanks for your services. Am inquiring about the difficulty ina acquiring a residence permit these days. They ask for many documentsa and getting two years is almost impossible.
    Another question is, does this apply for the work permit as well?
    Lastly, I wanna ask about work permits. How do I pay for the work permit; i mean in terms of insurance and security fund or per as you earn tax. Thanks..

  • Sara o

    I have a valid Short term residence in Turkey valid for 15 days. I got an acceptance and ogrenci bilgisi for a PHD Program from university. Can i apply for a transfer or renewal or new application?

    • ExpatGuideTurkey

      Hello,
      Thank you for your comment.

      As you already have short term residence permit, you can transfer it into student residence permit before its expiration date. To apply after your current residence permit expires, you are supposed to go back to your country and apply for student visa to come back to Turkey and lodge new residence permit application.

      Kind regards,

      Your thoughts are important to us. Are you satisfied with the answers we have given to your questions? Please rate us and leave a comment.Click here

  • Yahaya

    Hi, thanks for everything;
    -Why is ith so hard to get and renew a residence permit these days. More and more extra papers are asked for by the officials even when one takes all the required documents.
    -What’s the most and best valued document on both the residence permit and the work permit?
    -Can I renew my work permit even after my residence permit expired and I couldn’t renew it?
    -What’s the logic behind an official to ask you to bring a land title?
    Thanks best regards

    • ExpatGuideTurkey

      Hello,
      Thank you for your comment.

      Changes of the rules regarding residence permit applcation is mostly caused by problems with overpopulation in İstanbul. There is no documents which are more or less important, all of the required documents must be presented by the applicants. Employer can apply for extension of work permit as long as current work permit is valid, there is no need for residence permit for this procedure. Title deed is required as a supporting document for the rental contract to prove that the contract is authentic and not only signed for residence permit purposes.

      Kind regards,

      Your thoughts are important to us. Are you satisfied with the answers we have given to your questions? Please rate us and leave a comment.Click here

Leave a Reply