ACSE Departmental Scholarships - Terms and Conditions

This information is for all recipients of Departmental Scholarships, including the Departmental Prize, Full Fee Scholarships and Partial Fee Scholarships.  You should also read this in conjunction with the most recent Code of Practice for Research Degree Programmes, which contains a wide range of information common to all students, such as registration and fees, time limits, supervision, and thesis preparation and submission.  By accepting a scholarship award you agree to comply to these terms and conditions and the Code of Practice.

Award details and finances

Award details

The amount you have been awarded will be detailed in your award letter/email.

Departmental scholarships do not cover continuation, extension or resubmission fees.

Payment

Where a scholarship includes tuition fees, these will be transferred internally within the University. Where a scholarship includes maintenance it is paid by the University, quarterly in advance, into your bank account. Payment dates for the current year and information on how to provide or change your bank details can be found on the main scholarships information page.

Undertaking paid work

The University encourages research students to undertake a certain amount of paid teaching or demonstrating work during the period of a scholarship, if the opportunity arises. Undertaking this paid work will not affect your scholarship, provided that your supervisor agrees, and the guidelines in the Code of Practice, and any Departmental regulations, are followed.

Other awards

You are not permitted hold two awards concurrently for the same purpose. If you gain additional bursaries, grants or scholarships which are intended to supplement your existing award, this will not affect your scholarship.

If you gain an award which is intended to cover all living expenses over a period of several months, your Departmental scholarship must be suspended. For example, if you gained a scholarship to study abroad for one year, your departmental scholarship would normally be suspended for that period. You must inform Matthew Ham (m.ham@sheffield.ac.uk) about any additional awards so we can advise you on how your Departmental scholarship may be affected.

Changes affecting funding

Leave of absence

You must inform us as soon as possible if you need to take a leave of absence for any reason, e.g. maternity, illness, personal problems.

Illness

If you are prevented from working by illness for a continuous period of more than two weeks you must inform your supervisor immediately and send in a medical certificate.

Payment of a scholarship can continue for absences covered by a medical certificate for up to 13 weeks within any 12-month period. If the illness lasts, or is expected to last, for more than 13 weeks, the scholarship will be suspended, payments will stop and the expected submission date will be extended correspondingly. In such circumstances, you may wish to seek advice from SSID about other possible sources of financial support. The student must follow the procedures below for requesting a leave of absence.

Maternity, Paternity and Adoption leave

If you become pregnant with an expected date of childbirth that occurs during the period of the award, or adopt a child, you are entitled to 6 months of maternity/adoption leave during which the Department will continue to pay maintenance at the normal rate, and the studentship will be extended accordingly. You may also request a suspension of the award for a further six months after this period, during which no maintenance will be paid. The paid period of absence and the unpaid suspension should be taken consecutively.

Students are entitled to a total of 10 days paternity leave, to be taken at any time during their partner's pregnancy or within three months following the birth. The Department will continue to pay maintenance grant and tuition fees during this period. This period is regarded as additional leave of absence and scholarship will not be extended. You may also choose to take an unpaid leave of absence during which maintenance will not be paid. In certain circumstances, fathers/ partners may be entitled to additional paternity leave once the mother has returned to work.

To apply for maternity, paternity or adoption leave, you should follow the procedures below for requesting a suspension, ensuring that you include a copy of the MATB1 certificate. Further guidance for students who are pregnant can be found on the SSiD webpages.

Leave of absence/suspensions can be approved, provided that:

  • The total period/s of suspension does not exceed 12 months
  • The supervisor has given their permission for the student to suspect their studies
  • The supervisor certifies that the suspension of studies will not delay the submission of the final thesis by more than the length of the suspension.
  • The request is made in advance: retrospective requests will not be accepted.

If the maintenance grant covering all or part of a period of unpaid suspension has already been paid, we may ask you to repay the amount that has been overpaid. If an unpaid leave of absence is granted, your submission date will be extended accordingly, but the actual overall duration of a scholarship award will not be extended.

How to apply for a leave of absence/suspension

  1. Discuss the need for a leave of absence/suspension with your supervisor.
  2. Contact m.ham@sheffield.ac.uk to inform us that you intend to take a leave of absence.
  3. Follow the University's procedures for requesting a Leave of Absence.  If you are requesting maternity/paternity/adoption leave you should enclose a copy of the MATB1 certificate or proof of adoption.  On the form, you should state that you are funded by a Departmental scholarship and that you have informed your funder.
  4. The Research Degree Support team will process the Leave of Absence and inform the Scholarships Team who will ensure that our records are updated. We will arrange to suspend your payments or to make additional payments for maternity leave.

At the end of an approved period of suspension, you should contact m.ham@sheffield.ac.uk to confirm that you have re-registered. We will arrange for normal payment of your scholarship to resume.

Unauthorised absence

Any periods of unauthorised absence must be reported to Research & Innovation Services by the supervisor. The scholarship will be suspended for this period and may be withdrawn.

Transferring between full-time and part-time study

You may, in exceptional circumstances, apply to transfer part-time to full-time status or vice-versa. Part-time scholarships are normally paid at 50% of the full-time rate. The length of a scholarship will be recalculated to take account of the date of change in status, and of the funding already received. You may be asked to repay any overpayment of maintenance already received. To request a change of status, you should email m.ham@sheffield.ac.uk to check how this will affect your scholarship. You should then follow the University's procedures for requesting a Change of Candidature. If approved, we will liaise with the Payments Office to alter your payment amounts.

University expectations

Progress

All University scholarships are subject to satisfactory progress, engagement with your supervisor and department, meeting any requirements of your research project (e.g. attendance at required research group meetings) and compliance with the Code of Practice. If you do not meet the University's requirements for satisfactory progress, your scholarship may be suspended or terminated.

Submission dates

You are expected to complete your studies by submission of a PhD thesis by the end of the funded period, and at the latest within the unfunded 'writing-up' year (or two years for a part-time student) after your scholarship has ended.

Termination of awards

The University will consider termination only as a last resort, since the objective is to enable students to bring their studies to a successful completion. However, you should be aware that the University reserves the right to terminate a scholarship where a student breaks any of the terms and conditions, if their progress is unsatisfactory or if they are absent from their studies without authorisation.

Early submission of a doctoral thesis

If you complete your studies and submit a doctoral thesis before the end of the scholarship, the award will be deemed to have finished and you will not be eligible for any further maintenance payments.

Withdrawal

If you are considering withdrawing from your studies, you should discuss this matter first with your supervisor/departmental Postgraduate Tutor/Head of Department. If, following careful consideration and discussion, you still wish to withdraw, you should inform us at m.ham@sheffield.ac.uk and follow the University's procedures for withdrawal ensuring that the date of withdrawal and brief reasons for the decision are included.

Entitlement to payments ends on the withdrawal date, and you will be expected to repay any maintenance overpaid to you

Who to contact

Any questions in relation to the above should be directed to Matthew Ham, m.ham@sheffield.ac.uk