NEW graduate route visa for international students residing in the UK


24 August, 2021

The Home Office has announced a new graduate route for all current international students residing in the UK. Students on this route will be able to work, or look for work following their studies for a maximum period of 2 years. This is increased to a period of 3 years for
students graduating with a PHD.

Applications can start from the 1st July 2021.

Who can apply?

The new route is available to international students who currently reside in England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland, on the successful completion of their course. Dependants of a Student, who already have permission to stay, can also apply to extend their permission as a dependant on this route.

How will it work?

This is an unsponsored route, meaning applicants will not need to secure a job offer to apply. There are no minimum salary requirements and there is no cap on numbers. Applicants on this route can work flexibly, switch jobs and develop their careers.

For students who began their course in Autumn 2020 they must have entered the UK on or before 21 June 2021 in order to be eligible.
For students who began their course in January or February 2021 they will need to be in the UK by the 27 September 2021.


Applicants must be in the UK and have, or have last had permission to remain as a student. If an applicant has, in the last previous 12 months to the application, been awarded a scholarship or sponsorship covering fees and living costs they must provide written consent
from relevant body.

The applicant must successfully complete their course to be eligible. Meaning they must be awarded a UK bachelor’s degree, masters, doctorates or successfully completed another relevant qualification equivalent to a UK bachelor’s degree.

The applicant must have been in the UK studying for the minimum period of their course, or for at least 12 months if the course duration was longer. Where the course was delayed due to COVID 19, distant learning taking place between 24 January 2020 and 27 September 2021 will not prevent the application satisfying the period of study requirement if;

  • they began their course in 2020 and entered the UK on or before 21 June 2021; or
  • they began their course in 2021 and entered the UK on or before 27 September 2021.

Applicants are not eligible if they have previously been granted permission under the Doctorate Extension Scheme or as a Graduate. Applicants are not eligible if they fall under the grounds for a refusal category or are in breach of immigration laws.


Posted by Aston

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