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Work rights are a condition of your immigration permission. This means it is very important that you are clear about what you may and may not do. You must always comply with any restrictions, which are explained in high level detail on this page. Further information and guidance is available on the UK Government or UKCISA website.

Working during study

European Economic Area (EEA) or Swiss national with EU Settlement status (settled or pre-settled)

If you are an EEA or a Swiss national who applied for the EU Settlement Scheme, or you are the dependant of one, you're permitted to work in the UK without any restrictions on the number of hours or type of work. To prove that you are a national or dependant of a national of an EEA country, you'll need to show an employer your passport or identity card and share your digital status.

Any national on a Standard Visitor visa (short-term study)

If you are studying on a course shorter than six months, or are attending resits or graduation, and you were issued a Standard Visitor visa, you are not permitted to work in the UK.

Any national on the Student visa route

A Restricted Entry sticker in your passport and your BRP card indicate that you can work 10 or 20 hours per week depending on your level of study. You can work full-time during official vacation periods and after your course ends within the additional two or four months, depending on your course duration.

You can apply for and accept jobs in most types of paid roles, at any level. Restrictions on the type of employment permitted under the Student visa apply. You won’t, for example, be able to set up your own business or be self-employed during your course, but you can prepare your business plan to launch your business after your studies. Further details are available on the UKCISA web site 

Solent University has a dedicated careers service which provides students with information on job vacancies, career planning, and every aspect of working during and after your studies. For more information, visit the careers section.

Work placements if you have a Student visa

You can work full-time on a work placement only if:

  • Your work placement is no longer than 50% of the length of your course (degree level).
  • The work placement is an assessed part of your course, included in your CAS.

Part-time placement during your permitted working hours is possible, as long as you do not work over 10 or 20 hours during term time.

Working after your studies


Start-up and Innovator visa scheme

The Start-up visa scheme is open to the University's graduates who have a business plan and who wish to set up their business in the UK. Successful applicants will be granted a two-year visa to stay in the UK and build their business under this scheme. Our Solent Futures careers service will provide support with business plan guidance and advice along the way. After the two years, you can switch to an Innovator visa to continue to grow and expand your business.

Graduate immigration route

Solent is committed to support the University's students graduating from summer 2021 with guidance on application for the two-year visa. Based on information available, this route would allow international students to remain in the UK for two years after they have completed their studies and engage in paid and unpaid employment.

Skilled Worker visa

To secure a Skilled Worker visa you will need to be sponsored to do a specific job, which meets certain skill and salary requirements, by an employer that has been licensed by the Home Office. Our Solent Futures careers service can set you on the right path during your studies with advice and guidance on employability.

Global Talent visa

The Global Talent visa is available for talented and promising individuals in the fields of science, engineering, medicine and humanities, digital technology, and arts and culture who wish to pursue their career in the UK. There are two routes available, which cater for different levels of experience. Exceptional Talent is for people who are already established as leaders or recognised experts in their field. Exceptional Promise is for people who have the potential to become leaders or recognised experts in their field.

Family members working in the UK


Family members on a Dependant visa

Family members on a Dependant visa are permitted to undertake any type of work, full-time and part-time, employed and self-employed. However, they cannot take employment as a doctor or dentist in training unless they have a degree in medicine or dentistry from a UK institution.

Family members on a Standard Visitor visa

Any family member visiting you on this visa will also be prohibited from working in the UK.

Further information

UK Government visa information

UKCISA guide to working in the UK after your studies

Working legally

You should always have a pay slip, showing how much you have earned and any deductions made. If you're working 'cash in hand', you are not working legally. If you're unsure about your pay slip, please check with the International Student Adviser.

National Insurance and Income Tax

For full details of how to apply for a National Insurance number, how much tax you can expect to pay and how to claim tax back, please see the student tax advice on the gov.uk website.

Keep in touch

If you would like to stay in touch with us, please complete the form below. We will keep you up-to-date with all things Solent, from information about our industry-focused courses to hints and tips about the application process.

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