Combining work and study

How many hours should I work?

It is your responsibility to be aware of your study commitments and not to take employment that will adversely affect your academic work.

Due to the wide variation in course timetables and the differing individual capacities of students to combine work and study, we do not to place a formal limit on student working hours although we recommend not working more than 15 hours per week during term time as it may affect your studies. You can search for casual work through My Career Zone where most vacancies are within the 15 hour per week limit.

For further  information please see our website:

Benefits of combining work & study

Apart from the obvious benefit of providing ready cash, having a part-time job can provide you with an important addition to your CV: experience!

It is not so much a matter of what you do but what you have learn from it, and your ability to demonstrate this to a future employer. There are two basic kinds of work experience: general and specific. General experience can be gained in any job and will help you develop skills such as: time-keeping; Learning how to deal with colleagues, working as part of a team, problem solving and commercial awareness. It helps enormously to be able to show your future graduate employer that you actually know what it's like having a job!

Specific work experience is experience in a field that you want a career in. Showing that you have already done work in a certain field or environment will help convince employers you are serious about that career path.

I am an International Student - are there any special rules that apply to me?

International Students should ensure that they have permission to work before taking a job. If permission to work is given, there may still be restrictions on the number of hours you are allowed to work.

It is very important that you have a clear understanding of these limits, as breaching them is regarded as a very serious offence, possibly resulting in deportation. Full details of working whilst studying can be found on the UKCISA (UK council for international student affairs) website.

If you have any doubts about whether you have permission to work please contact the International Student Support Office as soon as possible and they will be able to offer advice and guidance.

Information on employment rights

When you take up work, it is important that you are aware of some of the legislation that governs employment. The sites given below will give you a basic introduction to your rights at work:

  • Know Your Rights - This TUC (Trades Union Congress) site has information on a wide variety of employment rights and work-related issues.
  • Trouble @ Work? - Run by UNISON and the National Union of Students (NUS), this site is designed especially for students. It has information on basic employment rights, health and safety issues, and lots of other material.
  • Students and Tax - Not sure of what your tax position as a student is? Then read this information from the Inland Revenue.
  • National Minimum Wage - Get the current minimum wage rates directly from the Government's own website.

If you have any kind of problem with your employer visit the Student Advice Unit. They will be able to give you advice on your situation. It is also important that you let us know if employers are breaching employment law or treating you unfairly especially if the employer has advertised through our Service. This will help ensure that other students do not end up in the same situation.