Doctorate Extension Scheme


This scheme is designed to give students who have almost finished their PhD or other doctorate qualification an additional 12 months of immigration permission in which to look for and start work in the UK. Please contact us for information about this scheme. The university or college where you are studying for your doctorate must be on the Register of licensed sponsors. It must also be on the list of recognised bodies or be a body in receipt of public funding as a higher education institution.  If in doubt, ask your college or university if it meets these requirements. You can only apply in the UK under this scheme. You must be a doctoral candidate with current Tier 4 or Student immigration permission. This means you must be studying for a PhD qualification or one of the doctorate qualifications. Students studying part-time doctorate courses under Tier 4 or the Student route are eligible to apply from within the UK if they can meet the requirements. If you do not currently have Tier 4 or Student permission, you may consider applying under the Student route so that you can apply later under the doctorate extension scheme. You should seek advice about all your options before doing this, as it will not always be in your best interests to change to Tier 4 leave, particularly if your current immigration status can lead to settlement, and some people with short-term permission for the UK cannot switch into the Student route anyway. From summer 2021, the Doctorate Extension Scheme will merge into the new Graduate route under which PhD graduates can apply for 3 years' permission in the UK to work. It appears that there will not be provision for a current Doctorate Extension Scheme participant to switch into the Graduate route for the balance of the 3 years' permission. For more information on the application, Contact us to discuss your immigration matter