Work After Studies & Employment Opportunities

The Visa Team present a Workshop every month in partnership with Newcastle University Careers Service. These Workshops offer basic information to students on the key features of the immigration routes into employment in the UK as well as the application process. No booking is required. Further details can be found on the Careers Service website.

Tier 2 (General)

Under the Points Based System the main immigration route available to international students who wish to remain in the UK to work after their studies is “Tier 2 - General”. Arrangements have been put in place by the Home Office to make the graduate route into Tier 2 more accessible than the standard route.

Key features are:

  • Applicants will need to have successfully completed a UK Bachelor degree, Masters degree or a PG Certificate/PG Diploma in Education at a Tier 4 licenced institution;
  • PhD students can apply having studied for at least 12 months of a PhD programme;
  • Applicants must have a job offer from a Tier 2 licenced sponsor;
  • Minimum salary of £20,300 per annum (with exceptions for specific career routes - "Codes of Practice");
  • Applicants can begin work before Tier 2 graduate route visa is granted, as long a Certificate of Sponsorship has been assigned by an employer;
  • No resident labour market test required;
  • Limited to a maximum of 6 years in total (3+3 years);
  • The applicant MUST be switching into Tier 2 from Tier 4 Student and the application MUST be submitted from within the UK before the current / valid visa expires.

Guidance on Tier 2 application forms and other relevant information about working after studies can be found on the UKCISA website.

Please note that the Visa Team cannot check Tier 2 applications for students / graduates.

Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur)

Newcastle University can sponsor students under the Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) visa route for graduates who wish to set up their own business in the UK. This is subject to graduates meeting the criteria set out by the Home Office and the University.

Key features are:

  • Participation in Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur route must be endorsed by the higher education institution;
  • Successful applicants remain under the supervision of the endorsing institution during their stay under this category;
  • Limited to a maximum of 2 years in total (1+1 year);
  • You cannot start working (as self-employed) until visa has been processed unless your most recent Tier 4 visa was issued on or after 13th December 2012;
  • Applicants have to apply within 12 months of date of award of qualification.

Students who are interested are advised to initiate the process as early as possible. This can be done by visiting The Elevator in the Careers Service on Level 1 of King’s Gate where they can talk to an Entrepreneurial Development Officer between 1pm and 4pm on Mondays and Fridays and between 10am and 1pm on Wednesday (excluding public holidays and when the University is closed). You will have a 20 minute meeting with an Entrepreneurial Development Officer (EDO) to discuss your aspirations. If relevant, they will book you a further 1 hour appointment.

Further details can be found on the Home Office website.

Tier 4 Doctorate Extension Scheme

From 06th April 2013 students who are due to complete a PhD will be able to apply for 12 months additional leave. This remains a Tier 4 application (you must obtain a CAS) with the same application form and fee as a standard Tier 4 student visa application.

Issuance of a CAS is subject to you meeting certain requirements. Please attend one of our Careers Workshops where we will explain all of the criteria that you need to meet.

Prior to obtaining your CAS you must also attend one of the standard Tier 4 Visa Workshops where we will explain the application procedure. Continued sponsorship under the Tier 4 Doctorate Extension Scheme is subject to the compulsory submission of your visa application via the University Batch Scheme.

Key features are:

  • The applicant must currently hold a Tier 4 (General) visa;
  • The applicant is expected to meet normal Tier 4 (General) criteria and the Tier 4 Sponsor must agree to continue sponsorship (i.e. continue monitoring and reporting duties) under Tier 4;
  • The application must be made within 60 days of the expected end date of a course leading to the award of a PhD (ie: before completion of PhD);
  • Can only apply from within UK;
  • Fewer work restrictions (can gain further experience in chosen field / seek skilled work / develop plans to set up as an entrepreneur once PhD completed in full);
  • Leave will be granted for 12 months, commencing on the expected end date of a course leading to the award of a PhD.

Please be aware that Tier 4 will not be granted again after obtaining a Tier 4 Doctorate Extension Scheme visa.