Working in the UK after your studies

How many hours can I work after my course has finished?

If you currently have a Tier 4 or old style student visa and have permission to work 20 hours per week during term time, you can work full-time hours once your course end date has passed and until your visa expires.  This is usually for a period of 4 months after the course end date.  If you wish to continue working full-time in the UK after this period, you will need a different type of visa. You can find further information below. If you'd like to discuss your situation in more detail, contact us for help and advice, or to arrange an appointment.

What visa can I get for work after studies?

Please note that the Post Study Work visa is now closed to new applicants.  For further information please visit Tier 1 Post-study work (Applications closed 6 April 2012)

Tier 2 General

Most students will need to apply under Tier 2 General in order to work in the UK after the end of their course. Please visit Tier 2 General visas for in country applications for further details including the requirements you will need to meet.

The Tier 5 visa route may be useful for international students that want to do a period of temporary work experience after their studies.

Tier 1

A few students may be eligible to apply under one of the more specialist visa routes in Tier 1:

  • Tier 1 Entrepreneur - For highly skilled migrants who want to set up or take over, and be actively involved in the running of, a business in the UK.      
  • Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur - For graduates with a genuine and credible business idea or entrepreneurial skill, but who are not yet able to apply for a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa
  • Prospective Entrepreneur - A six month visa for those seeking funding for a new business idea.
  • Tier 1 Exceptional Talent - A visa for highly-skilled economic migrants who have won international recognition in scientific or cultural fields, or who show exceptional promise.


Need a visa for the Pre-registration Year in Pharmacy or Optometry?

Optometry students may have the option to study as Aston students during the pre-registration year. You'll need to be enrolled on the MOptom programme and extend your student visa. Please book an appointment with an International Student Adviser to discuss this.

Optometry students who are not going to take the MOptom may not be able to use Tier 2, but please read our information on Tier 5.

Pharmacy students may be able to use Tier 2 for the pre-reg year. If you do not meet the minimum salary requirement for Tier 2 (currently £20,500 per year for Pre-reg Pharmacists) the Royal Pharmaceutical Society may sponsor you under the Tier 5 Government Authorised Exchange Scheme for pre-reg students but this depends on when you will graduate.  Please visit this page on Tier 5 - Pre-registration employment for further details.

Page checked and updated 13 June 2014 LB

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Don't forget to keep the UK Border Agency up to date with your personal details

During your course you must make sure your details are accurate on MAP and your visa, but even after you graduate you must continue to update the UKBA where necessary.

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