Employing students

Students from outside the EEA are permitted to take limited employment in the UK, providing their conditions of entry allow this.  These students will normally have Tier 4 status.  Student Visitors are not allowed to work and so any visa stating this does not make them eligible to work in the UK.

There are strict conditions on the type of work students can undertake while they are studying in the UK and the period for which they can be employed.

If you are employing a non EEA student then you must check to see if they have any other contracts of employment at all with the university, perhaps in a different directorate or faculty. This is because no more than 20 hours per week can be worked by any non EEA student during semester time and this includes any combination of hourly-paid contract. Recruiting managers must also gain documentation of the study and vacation times of the non EEA student and forward these to HR along with other documentation as required on the Eligibility Cover sheet (attach link) 

Students working restrictions

Students who applied for their Tier 4 (General) status before 4 July 2011 have the following working restrictions;

They are allowed to;

  • do part-time work during semester time (see below);
  • do full-time work during vacations;

This work can be carried out without seeking further approval from the UKBA but must not fill a full-time, permanent vacancy.

The maximum amount of part-time work a student can do during semester time is:

  • 20 hours per week if studying a course at or above UK degree level or a foundation degree course, and/or if their Tier 4 (General) application was made on or before 2 March 2010; or

Full-time hours can be worked during vacations within the above limits.  Where students have completed their course and are applying to remain in the UK under the points-based system before their existing permission to stay expires, they can work full-time (within the above limits) until their application is decided.

Students who applied for their Tier 4 (General) status on or after 4 July 2011 have the following working restrictions;

They are allowed to;

  • work for up to 20 hours per week during semester time;
  • work full-time during vacations;

If they are on a course below this level at a UK higher education institution, they are allowed to:

  • work for up to 10 hours per week during semester time;
  • work full-time during vacations;

Full-time hours can be worked during vacations within the above limits.  Where students have completed their course and are apply to remain in the UK under the points-based system before their existing permission to stay expires, they can work full-time (within the above limits) until their application is decided.