This guidance is for managers arranging work experience placements directly between Imperial College departments and the student, school or college seeking the placement. It is not intended for placements that are part of a scheme administered by or in conjunction with Student Recruitment and Outreach.

What is work experience?

Work experience refers to a specified period of time that an individual spends with a business, during which they have an opportunity to learn directly about working life and the working environment. This could involve carrying out work like tasks on a voluntary basis or work shadowing/observing.  Timewise, placements will normally range from one day to one or two weeks.

The benefits of work experience

For the student

  • Gain an understanding of the world of work and the do’s and don’ts of the workplace
  • Choose the type of career they might wish to pursue
  • Improve their interpersonal skills
  • Identify their own skills and learn new key skills
  • Show their motivation and thus improve their employability

For Imperial College

  • Promote and raise the profile of Imperial College as a potential employer
  • Send a positive message to current staff and the wider workforce community
  • Enable us to access a wider range of talent
  • Provide new ideas and ways of thinking from young people, allowing us to reflect on the interests and needs of the next generation
  • Help develop current staff by providing opportunities to supervise and mentor a young person


All work experience must comply with the College's Child Protection and Safeguarding Policy (PDF), to ensure the safety and welfare of children, young people and vulnerable adults. This includes the following areas:

View the full guidance to find out about the full legislative requirements and the Imperial College policy.