Student Life Centre

Withdrawal

Find out about withdrawing from your course and who you need to contact.

Taking a break from your studies

Taking a formal break from your course is called temporary withdrawal. You might also hear it referred to as ‘intermission’.

Students take Temporary Withdrawal for many reasons, including health, family, academic, and financial concerns.

If you are thinking of taking a break, you must book an appointment at the Student Life Centre as soon as possible to talk it through and consider the implications.

When you come in the Advisor will help you consider your options, talk through the process of taking Temporary Withdrawal, and look at the support available on campus and in Brighton and Hove that could enable you to stay on your course.

It is important to have this meeting as Temporary Withdrawal may have an impact on many areas of your life: your student funding and fees, your housing, your visa if you are from abroad, and your personal life.

There are cut-off dates during the academic year for taking Temporary Withdrawal so it is important you book your meeting as soon as you realise you may wish to leave.

Find out more about temporary withdrawal.

PhD students

The Student Life Centre deals with withdrawals for undergraduate and Masters courses.

If you are a PhD student thinking about withdrawal, discuss this with your Supervisor and your School’s Research and Enterprise Co-ordinator. You may also wish to book an appointment at the Student Life Centre if you have personal or health concerns related to your withdrawal.

Other sources of advice

You must also contact your Academic Advisor to request a meeting with them to discuss your course and to find out about any changes planned for the next academic year.

They may also be able to help address any study-related issues that contributed to your decision to withdraw. Many students also discuss the decision with a family member, especially if they are providing financial support, and with friends.

If you take withdrawal and receive funding from Student Finance, the University automatically informs them of your withdrawal but you should also contact them yourself to discuss how it will affect your funding.

Find out more about how withdrawing will affect your fee liability.

The process

After your discussion with a Student Life Advisor, if you have made a firm decision the Advisor will complete the Temporary Withdrawal form with you.

Before you sign the form the Advisor will make sure you are fully aware of all the implications.

You will be asked to specify a preferred return date in the following academic year, at the start of one of the Teaching Blocks.

During your time out your School’s Progression and Award Board will consider your requested return date. They may agree with it or may decide a different return date for you on academic grounds.

Housing

If you are in University of Sussex-managed accommodation, you must also contact the Housing Office to terminate your tenancy contract.

This is a separate process: the form you complete at the Student Life Centre will NOT withdraw you from your accommodation.

You may also wish to ask Housing about your entitlement to university accommodation on your return the following year.

If you have a visa

If you are a student from abroad with a Tier 4 visa, you must contact the International Student Support Team at immigration@sussex.ac.uk to get advice on the visa implications of withdrawal.

The Student Life Centre will not be able to proceed with your withdrawal until you have sought visa advice.

Accessing university services during time out

During temporary withdrawal you can continue using the library, Sussex Direct and Study Direct, and your university email account.

You can also access support from the Student Life Centre, though during busy times we may need to prioritise students who are fully registered. It is a good idea to book an appointment with a Student Life Advisor before your return date, to plan your transition back into studying and discuss any worries or concerns.

If you receive support from the Student Support Unit, funded by the Disabled Students’ Allowance (DSA), this support will be suspended while you are on withdrawal.

If you are attending sessions from University Counselling Services, the number of sessions you are offered will usually be restricted while you are on withdrawal.

Permanent withdrawal

If you are thinking of leaving permanently, book an appointment at the Student Life Centre to discuss this.

We will advise you on your options and also seek to understand the factors that have influenced your decision. You should also let your Academic Advisor know as they may be able to support you if your issues are course/study-related.

If you are sure you wish to withdraw, the Student Life Advisor you meet with will complete a Permanent Withdrawal form with you.

Direct Federal Loans

A Federal Loan is awarded under the assumption that you will attend university for the entire period for which funding was granted.

If you withdraw or take a break before completing 60% of a payment period, the university will inform the Department of Education and calculate the amount of funding that has been earned (the portion that you are entitled to) based on your period of attendance. If more financial assistance has been received than was earned, the excess funds must be returned to the Department of Education.

A student in receipt of Federal funds who takes temporary withdrawal/intermission will be classed as withdrawn for financial aid purposes.

If you decide to withdraw temporarily or permanently you should notify your Student Life Advisor that you are in receipt of a Direct Federal loan at your appointment.

If you can’t come in to see us

Email studentlifecentre@sussex.ac.uk If you want to discuss withdrawal but are no longer in Brighton.