Working Full-Time As A Student: Valuable or Self-Destructive?

Can A Student Work Full-Time?

Full-Time work as a student can be an incredibly consuming commitment. This Business Kitz Blog will establish the key considerations and motivations behind committing to full-time work as a student, whilst begging the question, ‘is full-time work as a student really worth it?’.

What is the difference between full-time, part-time and casual work?

The category of employment specified on an employee’s contract is contingent on the hours they work, their flexibility, benefits they are interested in and their stipulated wage. Full-time and part-time employment share structural similarities and benefits, however there are differences that exist – namely hours worked. Casual employment arrangements also have its own benefits and limitations, but tends to be the most popular work option for university students.

Full Time Employment

  • The average full-time employee works roughly 38 hours per week, and may even be required to work additional overtime hours. 
  • Full-Time employees are often paid a pre-agreed annual salary which is typically paid monthly. This salary comes at a fixed rate and won’t vary throughout the year, unless a promotion or new arrangement is agreed upon by the employee and employer. 
  • Allows employees to receive a number of paid holiday and sick days throughout the year, which do not impact their income.
  • Business Kitz’ Full-Time Employment Agreement Template details the fine print of full-time work, and can help an employee and employer protect themselves, and come to a mutual arrangement.

Part Time Employment

  • Part-Time workers work fewer than 38 hours per week, according to a prearranged agreement between employer and employee. This agreement on set hours, gives the employee security, meaning the employer cannot reduce or change the agreement. 
  • Part-time workers also receive holiday and sick day benefits and are entitled to notice of termination from the employer.
  • Business Kitz’ Part-Time Employment Agreement Template details the fine print of part-time work, including the specific requirements and conditions of employment.

Casual Employment

  • Casual employees typically work flexible and irregular hours. This structure is usually preferable to university students, as it provides employees with the legal capacity to decline any shifts, with sufficient notice. This means, however, that there are no guaranteed hours every week, and there is no set work schedule to follow per week. According to Andrew Jewell, Principal Lawyer at McDonald Murholme, “Employers have no obligation to provide casual employees with any work whatsoever”.
  • Casual workers typically receive a higher rate of pay, due to the fact that they work less hours. This can be highly beneficial if you are able to gain regular hours from your employer.
  • Casual employees are not entitled to any paid leave, and their employers are not obliged to provide notice of termination if their employment is ending.

Are your employee agreements in order?

Save your company thousands in legal fees with our Australian Employment Agreement Templates drafted by top-tier Australian lawyers.

Hospitality worker - Casual, Part-Time, Full-Time Work

What should I consider when contemplating full-time work?

Full-Time work is a significant workload for anyone, but prior study commitments can exacerbate these stresses. Studying can be extremely time consuming and draining, which can have a dramatic impact on your social and study time. Studies have found that students working between 10 to 15 hours per week can manage their full-time study and their work, however, additional work hours are proven to be more stressful and have significant effects on your study and results .There are many factors that you need to consider when looking for full-time work as a student:

  • Are you studying full-time or part-time?

Your chosen study structure will drastically influence how much time you have available. As a full-time student, individuals are expected to dedicate a significant amount of time to attend university and complete extra studies from home. This means, when working full time, you are less likely to be able to attend your tutorials and lectures, due to time constraints caused by work commitments. As a result, taking on full-time work may risk jeopardizing your tertiary study results. As a part-time student, you have more flexibility to schedule your university timetable around full-time work, however, this means it will take you longer to complete your studies. 

  • Do you want to prioritise your social life? 

If you are a university student working full-time, there is a high chance that your studies will have to be completed during your nights and weekends to catch up on the hours you worked during the week. This can inhibit any time you have during the week to catch up with friends and family. It is best to work out what you most value and what you are prepared to sacrifice if you wish to juggle it all. 

  • What are your goals? 

Another huge consideration in your decision will be identifying your life and career goals. If your goals are to earn a significant amount of money and gain work experience right away, then full-time work may be beneficial to you. If your goals are to maintain balance between work and life, whilst achieving high grades at university, then you may want to consider getting a more flexible, and less demanding job. 

  • Do you meet the requirements to work full-time?

Within Australia there are several legal requirements that determine whether you are permitted to work full-time. This can be categorised according to age, visa restrictions and level of education. These requirements vary between states, which makes it important to research what necessary qualifications you may need to be involved in full-time employment. 

What are the benefits of working full-time?

  • Steady income
  • Entitlement to paid leave
  • More welfare benefits
  • Fixed work schedule
  • Career Growth opportunities

Student Visa Holders 

As an international student, there are several restrictions that may limit your ability to work full-time. Due to workforce shortages, the Australian government has temporarily relaxed their restrictions on the maximum hours permitted for student visa holders to work until 30 June 2023. After this date however, the resumption of student visa holders permitted hours will be reinforced.

As of 30 June 2023, student visa holders will be unable to work more than 40 hours per fortnight within any industry. According to The Department of Home Affairs, it is also compulsory that students; maintain their course enrolment, ensure satisfactory course attendance and ensure satisfactory course progress. If a student visa holder fails to meet these requirements, they will be in breach of their visa conditions. 

Legal Advice

As a student, working in general can be extremely taxing, and it is therefore important that you are aware of your rights under your chosen work arrangement. If you feel like you are being treated unfairly or taken advantage of within your role, our sister company, Legal Kitz can assist you. To arrange a FREE consultation with one of their highly experienced solicitors, click here today, or contact us at or 1300 988 954.

Are your employee agreements in order?

Save your company thousands in legal fees with our Australian Employment Agreement Templates drafted by top-tier Australian lawyers.

Are your employee agreements in order?

Save your company thousands in legal fees with our Australian Employment Agreement Templates drafted by top-tier Australian lawyers.

Are your employee agreements in order?

Save your company thousands in legal fees with our Australian Employment Agreement Templates drafted by top-tier Australian lawyers.

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