Registration and fees

Information on registration and fees for new and continuing PGR students.

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Registration of new and continuing research students

New research student registration

Registration is the process by which the University confirms that it holds correct information about its students, their programmes of study, and the arrangements for the payment of their tuition fees.

All full-time research students are required to register in person on commencing their studies following a Right to Study check. Full-time Home research students, part-time research students and University staff candidates are required to register at the commencement of their research, but are not required to register in person. 

Students entering the University at the beginning of the Autumn Semester are expected to register at the start of the Semester, see the registration webpages.

Full-time international students whose research commences part way through the academic year should contact the Student Registration and Records Team (studentadmin@sheffield.ac.uk) to confirm where to register.  

Before registering, all students must provide satisfactory evidence of their ability to pay tuition fees and other dues. New research students are also required to provide evidence of their qualifications and should bring their original certificates, or certified copies of them, to registration.

Students requiring formal confirmation letters relating to registration status and immigration matters must apply to Student Support Services, who are the only personnel authorised to issue such letters on behalf of the University.

Please note that it is not possible to amend a student's registration start date once they have registered for their degree. If a student is aware that their start of registration date is incorrect (ie they have arrived earlier or later than originally expected), and they wish to amend it, this should be done prior to registering. Students should contact studentadmin@sheffield.ac.uk for further advice and guidance.

Continuing research student registration

All full-time and part-time research students are required to register annually. The re-registration of all research students is online, approximately two months prior to the registration start date.

Permission to re-register will be withheld in cases where students have monies outstanding to the University in respect of tuition fees and tuition-related fees.

Payment of tuition fees

Tuition fees for sponsored students are paid direct to the University by the sponsoring body. The holders of University scholarships which cover tuition fees are regarded as sponsored students for this purpose.

Students who intend to pay their fees from their own or family funds which they have control of, or through a bank loan, are regarded as self-sponsored. Self-sponsored students may choose to pay their fees either in full, or in two instalments. Students must arrange payment of their tuition fee in advance, online, as part of their pre-registration tasks; students will not be able to pay their tuition fee when registering in a registration venue.

Postgraduate doctoral loans are available to Home students. For information and eligibility please see GOV.UK guidance.

See the tuition fees page for full details of the University’s fee rates and payment plans.


Periods of registration

The minimum, normal and maximum registration periods for research degrees are defined as follows:

Minimum period of registration is the shortest allowable time between initial registration and submission of the thesis for the specified research degree programme, as defined in the University Regulations. Permission is required for a student to submit their thesis before the end of their minimum period of registration.

Normal period of registration and tuition fee payment is the typical or optimum time between initial registration and submission of the thesis for the specified research degree programme. Tuition fees are payable for the duration of the normal period of registration. The University's expectation is that ALL research students should submit their thesis within the normal, ie tuition fee-paying, period of registration.

Maximum period of registration is the time limit for submission of the thesis for the specified research degree programme, as defined in the University's Regulations. Students who do not submit their thesis before their time limit will be withdrawn, unless they are granted an extension to their time limit (extensions are only granted in very exceptional circumstances).

The normal registration period for tuition fee-paying purposes and the time limit for submission of the thesis are specified on a student’s offer letter. At present, the majority of full-time PhD students have a normal/tuition fee-paying period of between three and four years and a maximum registration period of four years, depending on the funder and the nature of the project and training required. Projects should be designed to ensure that they can be completed within the fee-paying/funded period and regularly monitored to ensure timely submission.  This will ensure that students do not have to work unfunded during the latter stages of their degree.

Additional fees are payable by candidates who take longer than the normal (tuition fee-paying) period of registration to submit their theses.

Periods of registration and time limits for research degree programmes

Please note: these periods of registration include the writing of the thesis to the point of submission and apply to standard programmes. There are an increasing number of non-standard PhDs, where the periods of registration may be longer than the standard. This may be due to additional training and/or placements, or other funder requirements. Students are advised to consult their offer letter which will specify their exact normal and maximum registration periods.

Degree Candidature Minimum Normal Maximum (time limit)
Standard PhD Full-time 2 years 3-4 years* 4 years*
PhD with Integrated Studies Full-time 4 years 4 years 5 years
PhD Part-time 4 years 6 years 8 years
PhD Full-time University Staff 2 years 3 years 4 years
PhD Part-time University Staff 2 years 2 years 8 years
MPhil Full-time 1 year 2 years 3 years
MPhil Part-time 2 years 4 years 6 years
MPhil University Staff 1 year 1 year 6 years
EdD Part-time 4 years 6 years 8 years
LLM Full-time 1 year 1 year 4 years
LLM Part-time 2 years 2 years 6 years
DSpecMed Full-time 5 years 5 years 5 years
MD Full-time 2 years 2 years 3 years
MD Part-time 4 years 4 years 6 years
MD Full-time University Staff 2 years 2 years 3 years
MD Part-time University Staff 2 years 2 years 6 years
EngD Full-time 3 years 4 years 5 years
DEdCPsy Full-time 3 years 3 years 3 years
DClinPsy Full-time 3 years 3 years 4 years

*The normal and maximum registration periods for a full-time PhD vary according to factors such as funder and training requirements and students should refer to their offer letter for their precise duration.


Tuition and continuation fees

Tuition fees are payable for the duration of the normal period of registration and are collected at the beginning of each year. If a student submits their thesis after passing the minimum period of registration, but before completing the normal period of registration, eg during year 3 of a full-time PhD, a refund of tuition fees will be calculated on a pro-rata basis, based on the thesis submission date.

Once a student has completed their normal period of registration, and provided they have still not submitted their thesis, they will enter their continuation period, during which time a continuation fee is charged instead of a tuition fee. To encourage timely submission, the University offers a grace period during which the continuation fee is not charged if the student submits their thesis. Normally, the grace period is three months for students who pay tuition fees for three years and six weeks for students who pay tuition fees for 3.5 years.

In view of the ongoing impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the University’s PGR student population, it has been agreed that the current continuation fee grace period will be doubled for students until 31 March 2022. This means that students who currently pay three years’ tuition fees will have a grace period of six months at the end of their third year in which to submit their thesis without incurring continuation fees. Students who pay 3.5 years tuition fees will have a grace period of three months.

Extensions to fee-paying periods which have been granted under any of the Covid stipend extension schemes run by the University will be considered part of this extended grace period. If students do not submit within the grace period the whole continuation fee will be charged.

Please note that the grace period refers only to the waiving of continuation fees. It does not apply to extension fees charged for students who exceed their time limit, as there is no equivalent grace period at the end of a student's time limit.

Continuation, extension and resubmission fees can be paid by credit or debit card online. Queries regarding payments should be addressed to: studentcustomers@sheffield.ac.uk.

Online Payment System

Fees in 2021-22

  • Continuation/Extension: £468
  • Resubmission without oral: £335
  • Resubmission with oral: £410
  • Staff Candidate submission: £490

(Please note that these fees are increased annually)

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