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PAL Central: Apply to be a PAL Leader

An online hub of guidance and resources for our PAL Leaders and their Level 4 students.

Apply to be a PAL Leader

PAL Leader recruitment for 21-22 is now open for all faculties.

PAL sessions will take place face-to-face for 21-22

*some exceptions in HSS programmes, to be confirmed 

Before sending your application, please carefully read through the information and guidance on this page:

  • How to apply
  • What to expect after you send your application (diagram)
  • Requirements for becoming a PAL Leader (information on compliancy, providing Right to Work documentation, Tier 4 students, and working outside of the UK).
  • What are the benefits of being a PAL Leader?

For the (many) benefits of being a PAL Leader, please see here:

How to apply

To apply to be a PAL Leader, you need to follow these steps:

1) Read through the job description to ensure you understand the role and what is being asked of you. Please note that the role can change slightly from year to year so don't base your expectations of the role on your own experiences of PAL.

2) Ensure you read the 'requirements' box on this page, and make any arrangements you may need to have your right to work ready to provide.

3) Complete the application form (found attached to this box) and send to the PAL Academic Course Contact (ACC) for your programme. You can find out who this is for your programme here.

4) Await confirmation from your PAL Academic Course Contact on the outcome of your application.

5) If successful, provide your documentation to the Part Time Hourly Paid Team who will contact you with everything that is required. Please ensure you check your student email address on a daily basis, including over the summer, for emails from the PTHP Team.

6) Complete the mandatory online Facilitation Course modules and sign up to attend one of the virtual classroom Facilitation Courses.

Requirements for becoming a PAL Leader

Before you can carry out the Facilitation Course or any type of PAL work, you need to be made compliant to start work.  

It is considered an employment breach if you undertake any type of work (including paid training) before you are made compliant. 


Once you have been offered the PAL role, please check your student email address daily in order to commence the onboarding process as soon as possible. Please note that onboarding will take place between June and September. 

Onboarding will involve providing your Right to Work documents and completing the employment documents that the Part Time Hourly Paid (PTHP) Team will send you via your student email address. 


A scanned copy of your Right to Work document will need to be provided to the Part Time Hourly Paid Team via email, which must then be verified via a brief Teams callPlease note that once the BU campus re-opens, you will be required to provide your original Right to Work document in person and for this to be verified by an employee of BU.


Your Right to Work must be one of the following documents:

- Your passport  


- Your FULL birth certificate AND an official document with your national insurance number 


- EU National Identity card 


Please make sure you make arrangements to provide these as soon as you receive confirmation that you have successfully been recruited as a PAL Leader as this will enable you to book onto one of our PAL Leader Facilitation Courses. 


TIER 4  

Please see the information in the box titled 'Tier 4 - Home Office Guidance' if you are a Tier 4 student applying to be a PAL Leader.

Working overseas

HR's Part-Time-Hourly-Paid [PTHP] have advised that BU cannot employ any students/staff who will be overseas during their PAL Leader contract. This is due to reasons such as tax, pension implications, insurance, and employment legislation. 

In the unplanned event that an employed student finds themselves overseas and unable to return to the UK during their contract period, this will need to be flagged with the Central PAL Team. HR have also advised that each case will be reviewed on its own independent circumstances, so please flag any concerns with us so that they can be investigated if needed.

PTHP will verify your location during your employment processing, however please get in touch with and your PAL Academic Course Contact if you have any questions.

Feedback from our current PAL Leader survey respondents:

100% said that transferable skills were an important benefit they gained as a PAL Leader

100% said that supporting other students was an important benefit they gained as a PAL Leader

97% would recommend the role to other students

93% said they felt that being a PAL Leader had increased their employability

93% said that being a PAL Leader was a valuable experience


What support is available?

We offer a range of support to our PAL Leaders including:

  • The PAL Central online guidance to assist with anything you need to know about being a PAL Leader including session ideas, facilitation techniques, signposting and getting paid
  • A structured PAL Leader Facilitation Course facilitated by the PAL Tutor Team consisting of online modules and a face to face/virtual group session to prepare you for the role
  •  A designated PAL Academic Course contact for programme specific queries related to PAL
  • The PAL blog - updated frequently to keep our PAL Leaders in the loop!
  • 1-2-1 appointments with the Central PAL Team should you need to discuss anything - just drop us an email to schedule one in
  • Additional online modules during the academic year to assist with running sessions on specific subjects such as assignment briefs and interpreting feedback

Recruitment video

Former PAL Leader Hazel talks about the many benefits of being a PAL Leader.

Please click the image above to view the video.

For more information about the benefits of being a PAL Leader, please see here:

What are the benefits to being a PAL Leader?

There are lots of benefits that come with being a PAL Leader - including being paid for your contributions, fantastic support, a chance to build and improve skills and gaining experience that can contribute towards awards. Find out more about the benefits we offer to our PAL Leaders here.

What did our 2019-20 PAL Leaders have to say about their experience of PAL at BU?

Hear what our students receiving PAL had to say!

Tier 4 - Home Office Guidance

With regards to Right to Work documentation for Tier 4 students, the following guidance provided to us by the Part Time Hourly Paid Team applies: 

For a Tier 4 student, we now only require their Biometric Resident Permit (NOT A PASSPORT); 

  • A current Biometric Immigration Document (Biometric Residence Permit) issued by the Home Office to the holder which indicates that the named person can currently stay in the UK on a Tier 4 Visa. 

  • If you have a Biometric Residence Permit, Biometric Residence Card or status under the EU Settlement Scheme we will be able to conduct an online right to work checking service whilst on the video call – please give permission and share your code  

After your document has been verified via video call you will not be required to have your document verified again until, if applicable, it expires. 

The only exception to this is where they do not have a biometric resident card but their Visa is actually within their Passport, as an ‘endorsement’. 

  • A current passport endorsed to show that the holder is allowed to stay in the UK on a Tier 4 Visa. 

TIER 4  

If you are a Tier 4 international student, the Right to Work documents you need to provide for PTHP will be different. You can find more guidance here