Taking a leave of absence from your studies

Find out about suspending your studies by taking a voluntary leave of absence.

Suspending your studies is also known as 'taking a leave of absence'. This is when you decide to take a break from your studies – a 'voluntary leave of absence'.

Your reasons for this could include ill health, maternity, financial difficulties, and others.

Consider the implications

To take a leave of absence, you must complete the formal process. Your Academic School must then approve it in advance.

Your leave of absence will be for a defined period. You must agree a return date with your academic school.

You must discuss your leave of absence with your course leader, personal tutor or supervisor. Do this before you formally submit your request. They will help ensure you understand the academic implications of your decision.

Below are some key things to consider before proceeding with your request.

Academic

Discuss things with your course leader, personal tutor or supervisor. It's important you do this before you make any final decisions. They'll be able to talk to you about the academic implications and the dates of your leave of absence.

If you're on placement, or studying abroad, discuss this with your Academic School too.

Fees and funding

Taking a leave of absence during the academic year may affect your tuition fee. You can find out more from our fee payment conditions.

Students funded by the Student Loans Company

You should contact the Student Loans Company to ensure that they are aware of any changes to your study.

If you have a Tuition Fee Loan from the Student Loans Company, we'll keep them updated. We'll let them know of any change to your tuition fee liability for that academic year.

We also have to update the Student Loans Company if you suspend your studies. See the terms and conditions of student loans for more information.

The Student Loans Company will reassess any Maintenance Loan or grants you're getting. You're usually only eligible while you're actively studying.

You might be suspending your studies for health reasons. If so, you may be able to get extra Maintenance Loan funding beyond your date of suspension.

If you take time out part way through a term, you may have been paid too much maintenance or grant. This is called an 'overpayment'. You may have to pay some of it back.

There may also be an impact on your future funding entitlement.

If you're a postgraduate student and receive postgraduate funding from the Student Loans Company, your loan payments will stop if you take time out. They will reinstate your postgraduate funding once you resume your studies.

Email Student Financial Support if you have questions about your student loan. You can also call them on +44 (0)115 848 2494.

Students funded by external funding bodies

Suspending your studies may affect your eligibility for external funding. If you're receiving external funding, contact your provider for further advice. This can include sponsorships and so forth.

If you receive US Financial Student Aid, email us for advice before withdrawing from your studies. Withdrawing can affect your funding and repayment requirement.

Further education students

If you're a further education student, email us for advice. We'll be able to tell you about the impact of your withdrawal on any further education funding you get.

Eligibility for University bursaries, scholarships and hardship funding

You'll need to check what impact your leave of absence will have on your entitlement to any:

  • University bursaries
  • scholarships
  • studentships
  • hardship funding.
How will you support yourself financially?

Carefully consider how you'll support yourself if you take a leave of absence. Will you seek paid work, for example?

You may be eligible to claim state benefits during this period if you have:

  • children
  • a long-term health condition or disability.

You may also be eligible if:

  • you've been unwell, and are now better and waiting to return to your studies
  • you've had caring responsibilities and they have now ended.

If you're thinking of taking a leave of absence, make an appointment with our money advice team. They'll be able to talk you through the financial implications one-on-one.

Access to the University and NOW

You may lose access to your NTU IT account during a leave of absence.  This includes:

  • NOW
  • online library resources
  • Employability Online
  • Office 365
  • OneDrive
    your University email address.

If you need any content you've stored on any of these, save it locally on your personal computer. You must do this before you suspend your studies.

We may also deactivate your student card from the date your leave of absence begins. You won't be able to use it to access University buildings. This includes our libraries.

Accommodation

If you're thinking of taking a leave of absence, review your contractual status with any accommodation provider. This includes NTU halls.

Try to cancel your accommodation within the terms of the cancellation policy. If you can't, it's likely you'll be held to contract, and have to pay your fees in full.

Not all providers have a cancellation policy. A tenancy agreement is a legally binding document. Once you've signed it, the provider doesn't have to allow you to cancel.

NTU and UPP halls do allow new students to cancel. You must notify us in writing at least 21 days before the start of the licence period. See our guide to accommodation for more information. You can also email Student Accommodation Services or call them on +44 (0)115 848 2894.

If you've booked with a private provider, contact them directly. Review your tenancy agreement and any other booking information first.

You can also contact the Students’ Union Information and Advice Service. They'll be able to give advice on accommodation contracts.

Disability Services

A leave of absence will affect your eligibility for DSA.

You will also lose access to any mentoring or tutor support. You must tell your provider that you're going to suspend your studies. You may be liable for any support costs incurred during a leave of absence.

If your course is likely to continue beyond its original end date, email the DSA team at the Student Loans Company. They will be able to ensure:

  • continued access to DSA support
  • support with altering any insurance and warranty on equipment you may have.

Council Tax

The council may wish to review your circumstances if you have:

  • an official break
  • an extended period of absence.

The Local Authority will decide whether you're still eligible for Council Tax exemption. This is at their discretion.

Find out more about Council Tax.

Visas and immigration

Seek advice from our International Student Support team before you withdraw.

If you are on a Student visa and agree a leave of absence, we must notify UKVI. This is part of our responsibilities as an educational sponsor.

This will result in your visa being 'curtailed' — cancelled. You'll have to leave the UK and apply from a new visa from overseas. Only then will you be able to return to the UK to complete your course.

Find more information about visas and immigration.

You'll also have to get a new CAS number. You'll have to make sure you meet the requirements for your new Student visa application. This includes show you have enough funds to meet the maintenance requirements.

Your career

Taking a leave of absence doesn't mean taking a break from working towards your career.

Use our live chat and online drop-in to speak to one of our advisers. They can give you tailored advice and support based on your individual circumstances.

Complete the formal procedure

We recommend that you only complete the formal leave of absence process once you:

  • have sought advice, and
  • fully understand the implications that taking a leave of absence may have.

If you haven't already done so, see the information above and get advice before proceeding.

The formal procedure you need to complete depends on your Academic School. See the list below to find out what you need to do.

Animal, Rural and Environmental Sciences

Download and fill in the leave of absence form for your Academic School.

Submit the completed form to: AREAdmin@ntu.ac.uk

If you're a further education (FE) student, submit it to: fe.enquiries@ntu.ac.uk

Architecture, Design and Built Environment

Download and fill in the leave of absence form for your Academic School.

Submit the completed form to your Subject Administrator.

Art and Design

Download and fill in the  leave of absence form for your Academic School.

Submit the completed form to your course administrator.

If you're not sure who that is, and you're an undergraduate, send it to: ARTUGSubjectadmin@ntu.ac.uk

If you're not sure who that is, and you're a postgraduate, send it to: ARTPGSubjectadmin@ntu.ac.uk

They will then pass it on for you.

Arts and Humanities

Download and fill in the leave of absence form for your Academic School.

Submit the completed form to your course administrator.

If you're not sure who that is, send it to: AAHSchool.admin@ntu.ac.uk

They will then pass it on for you.

Nottingham Business School

Download and fill in the leave of absence form for your Academic School.

Email your completed withdrawal form to either:

Nottingham Law School

Download and fill in the leave of absence form for your Academic School.

Email the complete form to: BLSNLSSubjectAdmin@ntu.ac.uk

They will be able to guide you through the process. They will help you with any extra paperwork you have to submit in support of your request to withdraw.

Science and Technology

Download and fill in the leave of absence form for your Academic School.

Submit the completed form: SCI.StudentRequests@ntu.ac.uk

Social Sciences

Please contact your Course Leader or Subject Administrator to discuss a leave of absence.  Your Course Leader has insight into the way your course is structured and organised and may be able to discuss options that you haven't considered.

Download and fill in the leave of absence form for your Academic School.

Submit the completed form to one of the following.

For all social sciences except education, email it to: SOCReception@ntu.ac.uk

For education, email it to: NIE.Reception@ntu.ac.uk

NTU Doctoral School

Confetti

Download and fill in the leave of absence form for your Academic School.

Submit the completed form to: MIS@confetti.ac.uk

  • Last updated: 19/10/2021