Pre-registration training visa requirements

From 2016, in order to undertake pre-registration training in the UK, most overseas students will be expected to apply for a Tier 2 visa and will therefore only be able to undertake a pre-registration place with an employer registered as a Tier 2 sponsor and which pays the minimum salary to meet the Tier 2 requirements. These placements are open to all MPharm students (British, EU and overseas) and it is unlikely that all overseas students will be able to obtain one of these placements. For more information about eligibility for a Tier 2 visa, please see the Home Office website at

Students from the following countries may be eligible to apply for a two year work visa under the Tier 5 Youth Mobility Scheme*:

  • Australia
  • Canada
  • Hong Kong
  • Japan
  • Monaco
  • New Zealand
  • Republic of Korea
  • Taiwan

This scheme is also available to holders of British Overseas Territories passports and British Nationals (Overseas).

You cannot switch into this immigration category from within the UK. Instead, you need to leave the UK and apply for entry clearance.

  • If you are from the Republic of Korea, you need a certificate of sponsorship in order to apply. You obtain this by contacting the Consular Services Division of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
  • If you are from Taiwan, you need to register your interest with the National Youth Commission. Registration is usually open for a short period each year. If the National Youth Commission accepts your registration, it will send you a certificate of sponsorship and details of how to apply for your visa.
  • If you hold a Hong Kong (Special Administrative Region) passport, you need to apply to the Labour Department for a certificate of sponsorship.
  • The Home Office website has full details about how to register if you are from the Republic of Korea, Taiwan or Hong Kong.

If you are from one of the other eligible countries or you have a British National passport, you are not required to register your interest and can just apply using your passport as evidence that you are sponsored. Places are, however, limited in number and your application will be refused if all the places for a year have already been taken. 

Check on the Home Office website for announcements about whether all the places for your country have been taken. There is no limit for British Overseas Citizens, British Overseas Territories Citizens and British Nationals (Overseas).

To apply under Tier 5 (Youth Mobility), you must be aged between 18 and 30, and you must have £1,890 in your personal bank account on the date on which you apply for entry clearance.

*On 27 November 2008, Tier 5 (Youth Mobility Scheme) replaced a number of different schemes, including the Working Holidaymakers scheme for Commonwealth citizens. If you have already spent time in the UK as a Working Holidaymaker, you cannot apply under the Tier 5 (Youth Mobility Scheme). You can apply only once under the Tier 5 (Youth Mobility Scheme).

For further information visit:

Students joining the MPharm programme should have no issues with post-graduation visa requirements if they either have the automatic right to work in the UK (for example, as UK or EU passport holders) or will be able to undertake pre-registration back in their respective home countries in order to qualify as a practising pharmacist after completing the UK MPharm degree.

However, overseas students who join the MPharm programme and hope to carry out pre-registration training in the UK must be aware that Tier 2 visa opportunities will inevitably be limited and cannot be guaranteed by the School of Pharmacy.