Placements and Work Experience Created by Edge Hill University Careers Team (updated Jun 2020)

Did you know, 59% of graduates that were hired by our Top Undergraduate Employers were former interns and placement students? That’s why it is essential to get professional work experience while you are still at university.” (Rate my Placement)
“If you don't know what career you want when you graduate, you may have more options than you think. There are jobs in law, finance, IT and management that are open to graduates from any degree background.” (Target Jobs)
The majority of graduate employers expect graduates to have some experience in the work place and to have developed transferable skills such as time management, teamwork, customer service etc. An excellent way to develop these skills and experience is through undertaking a placement. There are various types of placements and these are explained below.

Please note, Careers do not advertise or endorse unpaid Sandwich Placements. If you are considering an unpaid Placement of any kind, please book an appointment with a Careers Adviser to discuss your options.

Sandwich Placements

A year-long placement typically undertaken between students’ second and third year of study is known as a sandwich placement. Students work on a full-time basis and get paid like any other regular employee.

The word ‘sandwich’ is used to describe the placements because they are sandwiched in between the penultimate and final year.

There are quite a few different names for sandwich placements, including ‘industrial placement’ ‘year in industry’ or an ‘internship’.

Students studying at Edge Hill University on courses within the Faculty of Arts and Sciences are able to undertake a sandwich course.

There are many benefits of undertaking a sandwich placement and to help you Edge Hill students will not be charged tuition fees during their placement year. You may also be entitled to a £500 bursary through the Student Opportunity Fund.

On-course or short-term placements

Some degrees and masters courses include a work placement. These operate in a number of ways e.g. a block placement of 2 weeks, or a series of days spread across a number of weeks or months. These work placements may form part of a module for your course and are unpaid.

Students often undertake a specific project for the organisation e.g. conducting research, organising an event, producing publicity and promotional material or creating/updating a website. In this way the placement can be of significant benefit to the organisation.

Students on some professional education or health courses such as teaching, nursing, midwifery, social work etc will undertake a number of placements as part of their training.


The word “internships” is used in different ways:

They can describe a sandwich placement for 1 year between second and third year or they sometimes refer to short term work experience usually undertaken during vacation periods.

Sometimes they are referred to as Summer internships as they are completed over the vacation period and can last between 10-12 weeks (usually paid if they are with high profile companies)

Internships are usually paid and offer both the organisation and students a chance to complete a wide range of work. It is an ideal opportunity for organisations to see what a graduate might add to the company, with many employers using internships as a method of recruitment.

Graduate Internships

These are available for new or recent graduates and typically last between 3 to 6 months. Graduate interns who do a job that would otherwise be done by an employee should be paid.

Work Experience and Insight Days

Work Experience is usually relevant to your degree and over students free time and are short term (unpaid)

Insight Days with graduate employers are aimed at first year undergraduates and offer the opportunity to experience what it's like to work for them.

For help with finding Work Experience and Insight Days book an appointment with our Employment Adviser.

Virtual Internships

Due to the current situation with COVID 19 many Spring and early summer insights/internships/placements have been cancelled. However there are alternatives such as virtual internships which students could consider doing over the next few weeks. This will look great on your CV! Contact Careers for advice**


Voluntary organisations usually require commitment on a weekly or monthly basis and are unpaid. Take a look at our Volunteering section of our website for more information.

The voluntary sector also have many organisations who may be able to offer short-term or on-course placements. Charity Job is a great website which gives details of organisations all over the UK. Have a look at their jobs and/or their volunteering sections to get the contact details of organisations near you.

Book an Appointment with one of our Volunteering Advisers within the Careers team for further advice and information.


For more information about placements see:


Target Jobs

Rate my Placement


The Big Choice

EDT - Year in Industry

Gradcracker (for STEM subjects)


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