Please read this page carefully so that you are aware of the restrictions which apply to students who want to do paid work or unpaid voluntary work during their studies.
Student Visitor visas
If you are in the UK with permission as a student visitor, you are not allowed to do any paid work or unpaid volunteering work. Your visa or passport stamp will state something like "no work" or "work prohibited".
If you have a student visa, your visa or passport stamp should state "work restricted" or "able to work as authorised by the Secretary of State". This means that you have permission to work or volunteer for a restricted number of hours. Certain types of work are still prohibited for students even if you have the right to work.
The number of hours per week that you are allowed to work depends on when you made your last immigration application and the type of course you are studying. There are different rules for working in term time and during vacations.
Academic terms 2012-2013 are:
- Term 1 24 September - 7 December
- Term 2 7 January - 15 March
- Term 3 15 April - 14 June
Check the UKCISA information sheet Working during your studies for more details of the number of hours you are allowed to work.
If you are a studying a 12 month Masters course, you should note that the summer period is set aside for full time study to focus on writing your dissertation. It is not considered a vacation so you should not work full time during this period.
Research degree students
If you are following a full time research course you should be aware that University regulations restrict you to 250 hours of paid work per 12-month period. This work should only be carried out on campus working for the University. This restriction is intended to allow you to enhance your experience through working whilst also enabling you to complete your studies within the specified period. The ‘Code of Practice for Research Degree Candidatures’ requires students to consult with their supervisor before taking any additioanl work.
Your holiday entitlement is 5 weeks per year in addition to the days when the University is closed. The vacation periods which apply to taught students do not apply to you. You may work during your holiday period if you wish. It is a condition of your acceptance as a research student that you do not take paid employment outside of the University.
If you have a student visa, you must not engage in business, self-employment or provide services as a professional sportsperson or entertainer. You must not pursue a career by taking a permanent full time vacancy.
If you break the working restrictions
The law on working is very strict and the authorities check local employers to identify students who break the rules. If you work/volunteer more than 20 hours per week during term time or if you engage in work which is prohibited, this is a criminal offence and the authorities may fine you, detain you and / or remove you from the UK without notice. This could affect any future visa applications you make to come back to the UK.
Employers in the UK have a duty to ensure that their employees are entitled to work in the UK. The University is unable to produce documents for students confirming entitlement to work. If your employer needs confirmation that you are entitled to work they should call the UK Border Agency Employer’s Helpline on 0300 123 4699.