themysterious
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Hey guys,

I started a course in 2011 and during my first year i had a lot of problems at home (i was living at home not claiming student finance my father paid my fees), so after numerous counselling sessions i decided to transfer university but i had to start from first year again. Everyone told me it was a mistake as i was going from a very reputable university to a not so reputable university, an in addition a jump from £3000 to £9000 fees, but regardless i didn't listen. I applied for finance and realised i could receive a grant aswell so i was entitled to the full amount. After this i finished my first year and received a first and as time grew closer to withdraw i could not make myself do it so i decided to take a gap year just incase the situation changed, and during this gap year i was at this other university. Now due to me receiving a scholarship during this gap year for my performance during my first year at the previous university, and in addition my mother getting diagnosed with cancer, i decided to return to the first university after finishing my first year at the second university. (i know it sounds stupid but my situation was messed up at the time). Obviously i cancelled my student finance, i didn't try transfer it as that might have got a bit confusing as my previous university did not know i was going to attend another uni in my gap year.

My question is it safe for me to reapply next year for the grant and maintenance loan? Or will that be risky seeing as my previous uni had no idea i was taking a gap year?

Please note: i only had student finance during my time at the second university, and i am now currently in my 2nd year of a 4 year course.

Thank you for your help.
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Klix88
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(Original post by themysterious)
I started a course in 2011 and during my first year i had a lot of problems at home (i was living at home not claiming student finance my father paid my fees), 1 year so after numerous counselling sessions i decided to transfer university but i had to start from first year again. Everyone told me it was a mistake as i was going from a very reputable university to a not so reputable university, an in addition a jump from £3000 to £9000 fees, but regardless i didn't listen. I applied for finance and realised i could receive a grant aswell so i was entitled to the full amount. After this i finished my first year 1 year and received a first and as time grew closer to withdraw i could not make myself do it so i decided to take a gap year just incase the situation changed, and during this gap year 1 year?? was at this other university. Now due to me receiving a scholarship during this gap year for my performance during my first year at the previous university, and in addition my mother getting diagnosed with cancer, i decided to return to the first university 1 year after finishing my first year at the second university. (i know it sounds stupid but my situation was messed up at the time). Obviously i cancelled my student finance, i didn't try transfer it as that might have got a bit confusing as my previous university did not know i was going to attend another uni in my gap year.

My question is it safe for me to reapply next year for the grant and maintenance loan? Or will that be risky seeing as my previous uni had no idea i was taking a gap year?

Please note: i only had student finance during my time at the second university, and i am now currently in my 2nd year of a 4 year course.

Thank you for your help.
Unfortunately Student Finance entitlement is based on the number of years of previous university study, and not the number of years of Student Finance that you've previously had. The fact that you didn't have Student Finance at your first uni, won't improve your situation.

The waters are muddied by your "gap year", in which you say you were at a uni and you were also in receipt of a scholarship from another uni. This implies that although you view this as a gap year, you were actually studying or at least receiving funding and being treated as a student (otherwise the scholarship wouldn't have been payable).

So as I understand it (per my highlights above):
Uni 1: First year
Uni 2: First year
"Gap Year": Scholarship from Uni 1
Uni 1: Second year (currently)
= 4 years of uni-level study in total

The calculation is:

Number of years of new degree course (minus) Number of previous years of uni-level study (plus) One year = Entitlement.

If my assumption about your gap year is correct, then your entitlement from next academic year will be calculated as:

4 - 4 + 1= 1 year of Student Finance funding (subject to the usual eligibility criteria), which will be payable in your fourth year. You'd have to fund 2014/15 yourself (including tuition fees) apart from a small Mainentance Loan.

If SF don't count your gap year as previous study, then the calculation will be 4 - 3 + 1 = 2. So you could potentially get your full Student Finance entitlement for your third and fourth years.

Essentially, I think only Student Finance themselves will be able to rule. To answer your basic question - yes it's safe to apply, but I think whether you'll get one or two years of funding will depend on how SF interpret that "gap year".
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themysterious
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(Original post by Klix88)
Unfortunately Student Finance entitlement is based on the number of years of previous university study, and not the number of years of Student Finance that you've previously had. The fact that you didn't have Student Finance at your first uni, won't improve your situation.

The waters are muddied by your "gap year", in which you say you were at a uni and you were also in receipt of a scholarship from another uni. This implies that although you view this as a gap year, you were actually studying or at least receiving funding and being treated as a student (otherwise the scholarship wouldn't have been payable).

So as I understand it (per my highlights above):
Uni 1: First year
Uni 2: First year
"Gap Year": Scholarship from Uni 1
Uni 1: Second year (currently)
= 4 years of uni-level study in total

The calculation is:

Number of years of new degree course (minus) Number of previous years of uni-level study (plus) One year = Entitlement.

If my assumption about your gap year is correct, then your entitlement from next academic year will be calculated as:

4 - 4 + 1= 1 year of Student Finance funding (subject to the usual eligibility criteria), which will be payable in your fourth year. You'd have to fund 2014/15 yourself (including tuition fees) apart from a small Mainentance Loan.

If SF don't count your gap year as previous study, then the calculation will be 4 - 3 + 1 = 2. So you could potentially get your full Student Finance entitlement for your third and fourth years.

Essentially, I think only Student Finance themselves will be able to rule. To answer your basic question - yes it's safe to apply, but I think whether you'll get one or two years of funding will depend on how SF interpret that "gap year".

Oh okay i was under the impression that i get 4+1 years of funding = 5 years. The two years at the previous universities = 5-2 = 3 years. But i haven't applied for this year so 5-3=2 years, when i apply next year. But i think i get what you are saying, they will count my last year as two years as i was enrolled at two universities.

The scholarship i received was for my performance in first year, and i am using it this year, but that was purely academic based, will they even need to know about that? The university kept the scholarship anyway and asked me what i wanted to do with it when i returned, i chose to put it towards my tuition fees.

I don't necessarily mind if i don't get funding, even if i apply it will just be for the grant and maintenance loan not the tuition fees. It's just it would be a shame to miss out on the grant i am entitled to. The only real thing I'm worried about is that my previous uni will find out about what i did in my gap year due to my student finance application.

Thank you.
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jelly1000
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(Original post by themysterious)
Hey guys,

I started a course in 2011 and during my first year i had a lot of problems at home (i was living at home not claiming student finance my father paid my fees), so after numerous counselling sessions i decided to transfer university but i had to start from first year again. Everyone told me it was a mistake as i was going from a very reputable university to a not so reputable university, an in addition a jump from £3000 to £9000 fees, but regardless i didn't listen. I applied for finance and realised i could receive a grant aswell so i was entitled to the full amount. After this i finished my first year and received a first and as time grew closer to withdraw i could not make myself do it so i decided to take a gap year just incase the situation changed, and during this gap year i was at this other university. Now due to me receiving a scholarship during this gap year for my performance during my first year at the previous university, and in addition my mother getting diagnosed with cancer, i decided to return to the first university after finishing my first year at the second university. (i know it sounds stupid but my situation was messed up at the time). Obviously i cancelled my student finance, i didn't try transfer it as that might have got a bit confusing as my previous university did not know i was going to attend another uni in my gap year.

My question is it safe for me to reapply next year for the grant and maintenance loan? Or will that be risky seeing as my previous uni had no idea i was taking a gap year?

Please note: i only had student finance during my time at the second university, and i am now currently in my 2nd year of a 4 year course.

Thank you for your help.
Yes if you are on a 4 year course then your entitled to 5 years of funding as its length of course + 1 year. The rule is applied backwards so that the last years of your course are funded not the first in case you drop out again.

As Klix has pointed out it doesn't matter how many years student finance have or havent funded you for, but how long you've studied. However as you say you had to have counselling in your first year of university if you can provide evidence of that you may be able to claim back a year of funding - known as compelling personal reasons.
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themysterious
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(Original post by jelly1000)
Yes if you are on a 4 year course then your entitled to 5 years of funding as its length of course + 1 year. The rule is applied backwards so that the last years of your course are funded not the first in case you drop out again.

As Klix has pointed out it doesn't matter how many years student finance have or havent funded you for, but how long you've studied. However as you say you had to have counselling in your first year of university if you can provide evidence of that you may be able to claim back a year of funding - known as compelling personal reasons.
Okay i will try put together some evidence. Thank you. But do you think it might get me into trouble with my current university as it will say on my new student finance application that i was at a different university in my gap year?
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Klix88
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(Original post by themysterious)
But do you think it might get me into trouble with my current university as it will say on my new student finance application that i was at a different university in my gap year?
Only your current university will be able to say what - if any - difference that 'gap year that wasn't a gap year' might make. You're in a pretty odd situation. But I'm not sure what sanctions would be available to them if they objected.
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