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Post-Study Work Rights explored for International Students after graduation

If you are interested in exploring the MOST important aspect - PSWR, which Indian international students sought, you will certainly want to read this in-depth post to know just not about advantages but also limitations, comparisons between such kind of rights being offered by popular study destinations - enabling you to make the right and fruitful choice!
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 An international degree comes with many perks. Albeit, being recognized worldwide, the biggest one which resonates with the cohort is Post-study work rights..which allows options like stay back, privileges’ to look for work in the country after you graduate and even, create your PR pathways!

Ask any aspirant why they wish to gain valuable higher education abroad and Post-study work rights auger well with ALMOST: each and every one.

Before, I go on further with EXPLORING the options available as of date for popular study destinations like Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Ireland or the UK, Let me quickly enlighten you with ACTUAL importance of such rights :

Earlier in fag end of 2011, Most aspirants had been taken aback when favorite study destination like UK capped post-study work duration at JUST four months in 2011 and this is where – the unforeseen occurred then :

As a result, the number of Indian students attending UK universities underwent a dramatic decline, from just under 30,000 in 2011-12 to just over 16,000 in 2016-17.

Now – Check out restoration benefit to UK economy

The above facts and figures had clearly signified the adverse impact with degrowth which loomed on for several years with curbing down of such crucial rights, and thereafter, the current UK govt. has restored the policy with introduction of Post study work visa for 2 years

And yes, International student applicants have literally skyrocketed for UK even amidst Covid-19

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) found that Indian nationals accounted for 17 per cent of the total 299,023 sponsored study visas granted by the UK Home Office in the year ending March 2020, with the number more than doubling from 2019 to hit a total of 49,844 grants a continuous rise since 2016.
– Indian express

Now – At BROADER level, All the major study destinations have an option to work after graduation in their country, and not just this, All such economies have introduced reforms for covering online study duration towards work visa.

Why Post Study Work Rights Matter?

The post-study work rights bring several benefits to international students:

  • Gain easy access to the labour market in the study abroad destination.
  • Bridge the future pathways to Permanent Residency (PR).
  • Boost career prospects through international job experience.
  • Recoup financial expenses incurred in international education.
  • Avail work rights for dependents.

So, It is simply implausible (failing to convince) by now based on the face of records as to why Post study rights is SO important..

I know that Post-study work rights is always eye-catchy for most aspirants owing to the multitude of benefits you get, however, most fail to read the “fine prints/details” i.e. appended rules and regulations and remain inclined to just pursue higher education abroad with their eyes popped after looking at catchy headlines or visuals – in pursuit of bridging pathways for permanent residency.

So, In this blog post, I will talk about the top study abroad destinations for post-study work rights and opportunities – and also examine the “fine print/details” out of extracts usually from official immigration sites, so would be appending that, too for awareness purposes.


At the very outset – Australia has 2 types of post study work rights option originating from temporary graduate visa where you get the dawned advantage to not portray : work experience , English language requirement, Financial requirement at an overview level although conditions may vary from case to case basis.

Temporary Graduate visa (subclass 485)

The Temporary Graduate visa is one of the most popular visa options for international students who have graduated.  Furthermore, This visa has two different streams – Graduate Work Stream and Post-Study Work Stream.

Graduate Work Stream

  • Temporary visa up to 18 months
  • Primarily applies to vocational courses
  • But, With this Visa stream – alongwith the easy leverages, here comes the most crucial aspect : Work must be related to the course you studied.

In an nutshell, This visa is for international students who have recently graduated with skills and qualifications that are relevant to specific occupations Australia needs at specific juncture. Also, you would be required to assessed by a relevant assessing authority in regards to skills being suitable for respective occupation.

The above clause of employment path being related to academic progression gets implied for both streams.

Post-Study Work Stream

  • Goes for a duration of 2 to 5 years, depending upon your location and on the highest educational qualification they have obtained
  • Graduates from regional institutions get extra 1-2 years over the usual duration
  • Must have completed undergraduate or postgraduate level studies at a CRICOS-registered institution

Recently, Australia announced that it will extend post-study work visa rights to foreign students who have studied and lived in regional areas (outside Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne) wef 2021.

Here is a snapshot glance of region-wise categories for more clarity:

Source – SBS Punjabi

Fine prints review

Although, Australian Government have kept Post study work rights policy intact and consistent over the past several years BUT, here are certain limitations which could put you at disadvantage :

  1. You are required to complete minimum two academic years study which is defined as 92 weeks of study by Department of home affairs, Australia
  2. Completion of a Bachelor degree or higher are solely considered for Post study work stream and not diploma or trade qualifications, although, you always have the option of doing packaged/combined courses for completing tenure of 92 weeks as mandated.
    Example : Starting with the diploma course which provide a pathway into undergraduate programs for students who would otherwise not meet the entry requirements of the undergraduate program.

How the opportunity lies in Australia for your best graduate outcome?

I know that cohort of international student aspirants and several even, relying on myths that I have tried to debunk have this notion currently – that Australia is too stringent with their PR policies so it doesn’t make sense to aim for even that.

But, I would suggest to think it from another perspective: Australia’s Migration Program settings are designed to ensure that migration is beneficial for the current and future economic and social development of Australia.

Source : Above extract from deloitte report

Now, If you are not paying heed to above information/extract being cited above and even not doing research on your own about future employability prospects with endeavour to contribute towards economic development for the country where you plan to graduate by going for course being aligned for future professional prospects and being more FOCUSSED towards :

  1. Saving money in initial phase itself, which can be certainly justified by bringing down your tution fees by studying in any XYZ institutions
  2. Relying on short sighted- half baked information with unreliable limited course options, where you are being shown easy pathways just for the sake of getting student visa grant and not being shown viable graduate outcome out of specific course/program

You could be VICTIMIZED by staying unemployed or not finding suitable employment, to recoup your financial implications made so far!

On the contrary, Aim for :

  1. Quality education/appropriate course mapping with work-integrated learning
  2. University/college offering further options to become job-ready with career development centers alike Bond University
  3. Double degree programs making you more versatile with dual skillsets to rely on and much more..
  4. Long run professional development and not instant graitfications – things which would make you happy for now and could adversely impact for professional growth.
  5. Pursuing a course with most appropriate education provider that offers its students to just help you find, not just a job, but a meaningful, rewarding and challenging career.
  6. Most important : Hiring professional consultant/agent for end to end services including course mapping etc who can actually provide results and the one who can actually bring in more money than they cost.

Always remember : Getting a degree is only half the story: infact, you have to work appropriately and seamlessly keeping a progressive approach to transform your qualifications.

Lastly, Australia is thriving economy with its education ranked#1 in the world, still offers many opportunities for international student graduates to gain valuable work experience on completion of their studies.

However, Your post study work rights and option to bridge PR pathways would all square down to few points to head in right direction : did you opt for right course/program which is future career ready? the course which speaks for the successful graduate outcome? does the course align with demand forecast for specific skilled workforce? have you learned to navigate the labor market?


Well – Canada has the most versatile post study work rights program, which goes on to be extended for short to long courses..Yes, Even 8 months duration course from undergraduate or postgraduate program can make you eligible to apply for 1 year PGWP (herewith referred to as Post study work rights)

Canada offers a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) to its international students who have completed at least an 8-month duration graduate study program from a recognized Canadian institute. You have to apply for PGWP within 180 days after receiving the final marks. You can read more about the PGWP application process and criteria here.

Interestedly, Canada has the highest count for providing opportunities for eligible graduates to attain permanent residence.

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Amandeep Singh

Amandeep Singh

Having worked for several years in information technology domain and handled key roles and responsibilities as global moderator and technical writer for renowned template clubs such as Rockettheme LLC and Joomlart - He is extending his experience now to immigration industry with the crucial ingredients of "online" and "legal" mix..

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