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When to Apply to Work Away

1.  As a registered graduate student you will need to apply to work away if at any time, including any compulsory element of your course you plan to work away from Cambridge to conduct fieldwork or undertake work directly related to your studies

  • There must be good academic reasons for seeking permisison to work away; for example, a need directly related to your approved topic to conduct fieldwork. If you secure permission to work away from Cambridge for a part of your course you will be required to work under adequate supervision and to pursue your research on the same basis as you would during residence in Cambridge

2.  You remain a registered graduate student but you are away from Cambridge, but not for the purpose of conducting fieldwork

  • To 'write up' prior to submission of your thesis
  • If you are required to undertake further work to your dissertation, such as corrections, revisions etc

Important Information

  • If you are a registered graduate student, it is very important that the University has a record of where you are when not in Cambridge. For those students sponsored under Tier 4, it is absolutely essential
  • If you are studying in the UK on a Tier 4 Student Visa your work away is recorded as an authorised absence.  This means that we do not have to inform the Home Office of this temporary change, but you are required to maintain your termly contact with your College whilst away from Cambridge. If you are in the UK you must continue to do this in person. For leave to work away overseas, this contact must be made by e-mail at the start of each term; in this e-mail you should confirm your current circumstances to your College ie. continuing fieldwork overseas or writing up at home
  • Practice varies according to subject: a number of Degree Committees do not permit you to work away from Cambridge until your first-year assessment and registration has taken place; some other Degree Committees, in which extended fieldwork is the norm, do not carry out the assessment and registration exercise until your fieldwork has been completed. If you are not sure, please check with your Degree Committee directly before making your application
  • If you are granted permisison to work away you are considered still to be under the active supervision of your Cambridge Supervisor unless alternative arrangements have been approved
  • If you are funded by one of the Research Councils, the Cambridge Trusts or are in receipt of an Overseas Loan, you must consult your Sponsor/Administrator in advance of your plans to work outside the University as there may be serious implications in terms of your funding/loan
  • You are not usually able to apply to work away for the purpose of employment
  • When you have submitted your dissertation and are waiting for the outcome of your examination, you are not required to apply to work away for this period.  If you are later notified that you are required to undertake further work to your dissertation, such as corrections, revisions etc you are exepcted to apply to work away if not in Cambridge
  • You should not consider leaving Cambridge until you have received the permission of the Student Registry to work away

Please also check the pages below for further information if you are not sure if you should apply for work away or intermission (break from study).

To begin the application process

  • Go to your CamSIS Self-Service Page/Apply for Things/Application Forms
  • Select the term(s) you wish to work away. [Please note Easter Term runs from April to the end of September] It is important to use the drop down/calendar look up. (you may apply for a maximum of 3 terms at any one time).
  • In the Text box, state the actual dates that you will leave and return to Cambridge
  • Provide a detailed statement of reasons for your application
  • If applicable, provide a statement to confirm that your sponsor/loan priovidor has agreed to you working away
  • Advise of where you will be based  (Country/City/Region) whilst working away
  • Upload a copy of your Risk Assessment form (This is not required for working away – at home, for the purpose of writing up)
  • You may also wish to upload additional material in support of your application

Risk Assessment

The University has a legal obligation to risk assess all activities. This includes working at another institution in the UK. The University Safety Office advise that the Head of your Department is responsible for ensuring that appropriate risk management is in place for the activities of their departments including the travel plans of graduate students. For information, the University Safety Office offers many examples of Risk assessments on their website http://www.admin.cam.ac.uk/cam-only/offices/safety/publications/hsd044m/index.html .

To track your application

  • You may track your application via your CamSIS self-service
  • You will be able to see who has next to decide on your application
  • It is for you to ensure your application prgresses in a timely manner
  • The process of application runs linear from you as the student initiating an application, to your Supervisor then to Department, College, and Degree Committee. Once received at the Student Registry – the last in the chain, if all the information is provided, the Student Registry can consider your application
  • When a final decision has been made, you will receive notification from the Student Registry by email. This email will be copied to other interested parties

You should not consider leaving Cambridge without having received notification by email from the Student Registry that your application to work away has been approved.

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'Fee For The Course'

'Fee for the Course' will apply to you if you commenced a course of study on or after the 1st October 2010. This means that the University Composition Fee (UCF) will be charged during terms of working away', except if the following applies (please mark on the 'leave to work away' application form if applicable):

If you are participating in an approved exchange agreement where there is a period spent at another institution and a fee waiver has been explicitly agreed by the Student Registry. Approved exchange agreements to date, are: A*, NIH OxCam, Faculty of the Future and the Henry Fellowship. This does not include outgoing Erasmus students, as fees should be waived at the European University, rather than at Cambridge.

If you are in the above category and if you are studying at a University Partner Institution you cannot apply for the fieldwork funds below.

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University Fieldwork Funds

If you are funded by a Research Council you may be eligible to apply for additional fieldwork funds from the relevant Research Councll.  If you were admitted from October 2010 and you require additional funding to complete fieldwork and have been granted permission from the Student Registry to work away you can apply for fieldwork funding.

From 2014/2015, applications for Fieldwork Funding are considered by Schools. Contact details are listed below.

School of Arts and Humanities

Students in the School of Arts and Humanities and who wish to apply for fieldwork funding should contact the relevant Department administrator.

School of the Biological Sciences

Students in the School of Biological Sciences who wish to apply for fieldwork funding should contact their Departmental Graduate administrator.

School of Clinical Medicine

Students in the School of Clinical Medicine who wish to apply for fieldwork funding should contact Higher Degrees Office.

School of Humanities and Social Sciences

Students in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences who wish to apply for fieldwork funding should contact their relevant Department administrator.

School of Physical Sciences

Information for students in the School of Physical Sciences who wish to apply for fieldwork funding can be found at Degree Committee for the Faculty of Earth Sciences and Geography.

School of Technology

Information for students in the School of Technology who wish to apply for fieldwork funding can be found at Graduate School of Technology.

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University Travel Insurance

You may only apply for University Travel Insurance for periods where working away from Cambridge has been agreed for you by the Student Registry.

Your work away application must include full particulars relating to the circumstances in which you expect to be working; the name of the authority with whom you propose to work during your period of absence from Cambridge; and the exact dates you will be away from Cambridge.

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For further information regarding your application please contact the Student Registry and if applicable the International Student Team with regards to your visa:

Student Registry (student.registry@admin.cam.ac.uk)

International Student Team (international.students@admin.cam.ac.uk)