The Student Room Group

Possible interruption of Studies

Hi i am 1 month into a year MSc course at UCL but am struggling to find the money to complete it as the SFE payment isn't enough. My mental health is poor and I'm worried sick about what to do. The uni is suggesting I interrupt my studies and go back next November. I have already completed some course modules (marked) and have a DSA and a SORA in place. Does anyone know the practicalities of doing this?

Thanks
Reply 1
Original post by Melaniekate
Hi i am 1 month into a year MSc course at UCL but am struggling to find the money to complete it as the SFE payment isn't enough. My mental health is poor and I'm worried sick about what to do. The uni is suggesting I interrupt my studies and go back next November. I have already completed some course modules (marked) and have a DSA and a SORA in place. Does anyone know the practicalities of doing this?

Thanks

You suspend, lose your registration as a student (but usually keep email access), go do other stuff, then come back in a year. It is really, really straightforward and your academic advisor or departmental admins should be able to run you through it in no time. In our place it is literally one form for me to sign for students to do this.
(edited 2 months ago)
Original post by Melaniekate
Hi i am 1 month into a year MSc course at UCL but am struggling to find the money to complete it as the SFE payment isn't enough. My mental health is poor and I'm worried sick about what to do. The uni is suggesting I interrupt my studies and go back next November. I have already completed some course modules (marked) and have a DSA and a SORA in place. Does anyone know the practicalities of doing this?

Thanks

I think the main factors to consider (since as above the process itself is usually straightforward) are a) will your completed work still carry over and b) what the effect on your SFE will be.

For a) this would just be a discussion with your personal tutor/programme leader. If you've completed the modules already they may let you suspend and just come back for term 2 next year? But probably very dependent on programme.

In terms of b) it's because usually if your interrupt/withdraw before the end of the course, SFE will ask you to repay the pro-rata amount of any loans disbursed for the time "left" on the course. E.g. if you interrupt next week after first term ends, usually your first term loan disbursement will be "covered", but if you've had any further disbursement (e.g. if they just paid the whole amount in one lump sum, which I don't think they do normally) they may ask you to make some repayments (but are usually amenable to payment plans). As the additional payments are considered "overpayments" beyond what you've "earned" so far in your time there. That said the masters loans are something I'm less familiar with so format may be different.

The other thing is to consider then what SFE funding you'd be entitled to when you went back. So definitely worth getting in touch with SFE to find out what the situation is and what your options would be. Might also be worth checking with the SU as they may have some experience in this area and be able to advise on what's happened when students have done this previously.

Before you go down that route though, have you seen what support the uni is able to offer through e.g. student hardship funds, any additional bursaries/grants available from your faculty/department? Often there are some discretionary funds available, although depending on the scope of the financial difficulties this may not be feasible. Also worth checking what mental health support they can offer (either now or when you go back after interrupting).

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