Taking a break from your studies (interrupting)
The information on this page primarily relates to those students being funded by Student Finance England. If you are funded by an alternate provider (such as the NHS), we would recommend that you contact Student Finance and Welfare to discuss your individual circumstances.
Taking a break in your studies is often called interrupting, however you may also hear the terms suspending, taking a leave of absence, taking time out or intercalating. There are many reasons for wanting to do this and the first thing you should do is discuss these reasons with your faculty. You may find it best to speak to your Personal Tutor, however you can also speak to your Faculty Advice Centre for guidance. It is also important that you speak to a member of Student Finance and Welfare to discuss how withdrawing will affect your finances.
Affect on finances
Taking a break from your studies will have an effect on your finances. This usually depends on the date you interrupt your studies, which you will need to confirm with your faculty. Both the amount of fees you will be liable to pay and the grant/loan funding you receive for fees and living costs will be determined by the precise date on which you interrupt your studies.
Once a term has started, you are liable for the full fee for that term even if you withdraw or interrupt. The fees per year are proportioned as follows:
| Term 1
| Term 2
| Term 3
If you interrupt part way through a term you will be liable for the whole fee for that term. If you are receiving a Tuition Fee Loan to pay your fees, then you will still be eligible for enough Tuition Fee Loan to cover the cost of your fees for the term you interrupt in.
Please also ensure you refer to the Tuition Fee Charging and Refunding Policy relating to your year of entry:
Maintenance Loan and Grants (inc. Special Support Grant)
Grants and loans for living costs are paid in termly instalments, to cover costs for the duration of that term. Where a student interrupts part way through a term, Student Finance England will reassess these funds from the first day of the academic year until the official date of interruption. Any funds that you have received in excess of this reassessment will need repaying. This is likely to be requested immediately or taken directly from any future grant entitlement. Student Finance England will contact you about this.
Funding available during the interruption
If you are thinking about withdrawing from your course, we would strongly urge you to contact Student Finance and Welfare to discuss how this may impact on your current and future student funding.
If you are interrupting due to an illness, you may still be able to get full student funding for up to 60 days of the illness. In some cases, this may be extended such as if it may cause financial hardship or you have caring responsibilities. Help is available from Student Finance and Welfare to help with getting the right level of funding.
Returning to your studies after interrupting
In general, students are entitled to student funding from Student Finance England for the duration of their course plus one extra year. Any previous study undertaken may affect your funding entitlement. If you are considering interrupting you should contact Student Finance England to ensure that you are eligible for funding when you return to finish your course. The Student Finance and Welfare team can help advise you on this.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are there any other student funds available to me whilst I’m interrupted?
If you interrupt from your course, you will maintain your student status. Therefore you may be eligible to apply to the DMU Access to Learning Fund . If you want to apply for this please contact Student Finance and Welfare to discuss further.
You may also be able to receive social security benefits during periods of absence from your course. Support is usually only available if you have taken time out because you are ill or pregnant, or because you have to care for someone. Support may also be available once you have recovered from your illness or your caring responsibilities have ceased and you are waiting to return to your course.
Will I still have to pay for my accommodation if I withdraw?
You will need to check this with your accommodation provider (i.e. the letting agent or landlord). As you have entered into a contract with the accommodation provider, by virtue of a tenancy agreement, they may ask you to keep up payments. However, it is important you discuss this with them as every accommodation provider operates differently.
If you are in DMU managed halls of residence, you can contact The Accommodation Office to discuss things further.
If you are in private managed accommodation, it would be worth contacting the DSU Welfare to discuss your accommodation liability.
I have a student bank account, how will this be affected?
You will need to contact your bank and inform them of your interruption. They may convert it back to a standard current account, which may affect any overdraft you have with them. Each bank operates differently, so we would recommend you speak to you bank for more detailed information.
I am receiving a DMU bursary or scholarship, what will happen to this?Your eligibility for the payment of scholarships and bursaries will also depend on the date of your interruption. If you interrupt before a payment, you will not be eligible for that payment or any further payments during your period of interruption. If you interrupt on the date of payment or afterwards you will be entitled to the payments up to that point. If a payment is made after your interruption in error, the University will recover the payment.