Graduate Route visa
The Graduate Immigration Route launched on 1 July 2021. Below you will find key information that is currently available. Please ensure that you are eligible before submitting an application under this route.
- The Graduate Route will be available to international students who have been awarded a degree at undergraduate level or above at a Higher Education Provider with a track record of compliance.
- Your qualification must have been awarded.
- You must have a valid Student or Tier 4 visa at the time of application. If your visa is due to expire before your degree is awarded, please contact our team to discuss your options.
- If, in the last 12 months before the date of your application, you have been awarded a scholarship or sponsorship by a Government or international scholarship agency covering both fees and living costs for study in the UK, you must provide written consent to the application from that Government or agency.
- You can only apply from inside the UK.
The University of Edinburgh will need to report the successful completion of your award to UKVI before you can apply under this route. We will be able to make the report once:
- Your degree award is confirmed on EUCLID
- We have verified that you have a valid Tier 4 or Student visa. You should therefore ensure that you have a copy of your valid visa on your immigration record - please notify us if you have recently uploaded this and it has not been checked yet.
Please note reports are made to UKVI twice a week on a Tuesday and a Thursday. We will email you when the report has been made.
- Once you are eligible, you must apply by completing an online form (see link below)
- You must submit your application:
- after you have successfully completed your programme; and
- after you have received notification that the University has informed the UKVI; and
- before your current Tier 4/Student visa expires.
- Applicants will be subject to identity, criminality and security checks.
- The application fee is £700.
- The Immigration Health Surcharge fee at £624 per year of the visa.
- If your Graduate route application is successful, you will be able to stay in the UK for two years (extended to three years for PhD or doctorate level graduates). This route has replaced the Doctorate Extension Scheme which is now closed for new applications.
- The period of Graduate permission granted will start from the date the decision on your application is made.
- You will be able to work, or look for work, in any sector and at any level. The visa also allows self-employment. Please note that, if you establish a business is the UK while on the Graduate route visa, you will no longer be eligible to switch to a Start-up visa.
- Study will be permitted, but ONLY if it does not meet the requirements for study under the Student route.
- The visa is cannot be extended and does not lead to settlement, but Graduate visa holders will be able to switch into the Skilled Worker route once they have found a suitable job.
- Applicants will only be able to hold the Graduate visa once.
- Individuals who are already in the UK as a dependant of a Student who is applying on this route can also apply to extend their permission as a dependant. However, new dependants are not permitted on this route.
- Children born in the UK during the last grant of Student/ Tier 4 permission of a Student will also be eligible.
If you are a student who is currently outside the UK, or you have not been in the UK for the entirety of the 2020/2021 academic year, please find below a list of Covid concessions and deadlines that may apply to you.
You are a student who:
You are an MSc student who started your MSc programme from your home country in September 2020, and you are due to complete your programme in August 2021. Due to the ongoing situation, you have not yet entered the UK on a Student route visa, but have continued to study remotely. You are still outside the UK.
You must make a successful Student visa application AND arrive in the UK on your Student visa on or before 27 September 2021.
If you are required to be on campus for study purposes you must arrive in the UK by 01 June 2021. This deadline is now passed, so if you have not yet got your visa, you will not be able to apply.
You are a student who:
|You are an MSc student who started your MSc programme in September 2020, and you are due to complete your programme in August 2021. You applied for, and were granted with, a Tier 4/Student route visa. You entered the UK in October 2020, but then left the UK in February 2021. You are currently still outside the UK, continuing your programme remotely.||
You must return to the UK before the expiry date of your Tier 4 / Student permission
You are a student who:
|You are an undergraduate or PhD student who started your programme in September 2017, and you are due to complete your programme in May 2021. You applied for, and were granted with, a Tier 4 visa for the entirety of your programme. You entered the UK in September 2017 but then left the UK in March 2020. You are currently still outside the UK, continuing your programme remotely due to the ongoing situation.||You must return to the UK before the expiry date of your Tier 4/Student permission|