Bath Spa University Access Fund
If you're facing unexpected financial hardship, the Student Funding Team may be able to help you. They can be contacted by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Most awards from the fund are in the form of grants, although some short-term loans may be available to meet temporary hardship such as delayed Student Finance Loans.
Eligibility for the Bath Spa University Access Fund is restricted to home fee status undergraduate and postgraduate students who are in receipt of student finance and who have been ordinarily resident in the UK for at least three years prior to the start of their course.
EU or international students may be able to apply to the Emergency Access Fund.
About the fund
The Bath Spa University Access Fund provides limited discretionary financial support for full-time students who are experiencing financial difficulty and are unable to meet basic costs from other sources of support.
The fund may also offer limited support to students who have experienced a change in financial circumstances due to unforeseen events.
Students may receive one of two types of awards:
- Standard: This may be given to meet course related costs such as childcare, books, equipment, travel or for general living costs.
- Non-Standard: This may be available to assist in a crisis situation such as the repair of essential household equipment, or for travel home for serious family illness or bereavement.
Awards are discretionary and are paid in the form of a non-repayable grant.
The fund is intended to support financial difficulty rather than be a main source of income. It cannot help with tuition fees.
The size of the fund is limited and we may not be able to meet your need in full, or guarantee that funds will be available, especially towards the end of the academic year.
Part-time students may apply, but may only be considered for course related study costs.
Eligibility is based on:
- Being fully registered
- Home UK student (ordinarily resident in the UK for at least three years prior to the start of your course, settled status)
- In attendance on an undergraduate or postgraduate programme
- Full-time or part-time
- Be in receipt of your full entitlement to statutory funding and any other benefits you may be entitled to.
How to apply
You may apply to the University Access Fund after you've fully enrolled for your academic year no later than eight months after your academic year has begun. You may usually only apply once, as we assess you for the whole academic year. You may not apply if you have completed your study and are no longer enrolled at Bath Spa.
During your long vacation (your academic year has finished, but you have not completed your study and you'll be enrolling for the next academic year) you may only apply if you are a non-final year undergraduate student AND can prove you
- have caring responsibilities for a child or adult dependant
- have an illness which prevents or limits your ability to work
- are taking resit examinations or retaking elements of your course
- are from a Foyer background or a care leaver.
You're a final year undergraduate student re-sitting or retaking course module.
What we ask
When making your application, please ensure you answer all relevant questions on the application form, including ticking the appropriate boxes.
Your living arrangements
- Please provide details of your current living arrangements. If you have dependants, please give details. We're able to factor the costs of supporting dependent children up to the age of 18 (where they remain in full-time education).
Disability/special medical needs
- Home UK students may apply for help with costs not covered by their Disabled Student's Allowance.
- Please include all sources of income available to you for the current academic year. It's vital that you complete this section as accurately as possible.
- You should enter the amount of overdraft that is available for you to use since the start of the academic year. You should total your overdraft amount available, received income and your expected income to give a total income for the academic year.
- If you have a partner who is living with you, please indicate any income they have received since you will be assessed as a family unit.
- Please include your typical monthly expenditure for the academic year. We'll work out your annual expenditure based on your period of attendance.
- You may include expenditure relating to a partner, provided their income has been included in your application, and dependent children up to the age of 18, as long as they are in full-time education.
- Where you're living in any other form of shared accommodation, you should include only your personal contribution towards household bills.
- We can only include priority debt repayments. This may NOT include loan or credit card repayments unless you have a special agreement (for example, Step Change). We may include repeat prescriptions.
- Expenditure which is not considered essential, such as gym membership or excessive visits home, will be discounted.
- Students using informal childcare may provide proof of the costs incurred, but we cannot guarantee it can be considered.
- This section is an opportunity for you to explain why you are experiencing financial difficulty.
- You are advised to explain any unusual or exceptional costs appearing under your expenditure. If you're not undertaking any part-time work, you should also explain why.
Supporting documentation checklist
- This section is intended to ensure you have submitted all relevant supporting documentation with your application. Applications submitted without all the necessary supporting documentation will take longer to process.
- You need to sign and date your form to confirm that the information you have given is true and accurate. You should make a copy of your application for your own records.
Supporting documentation is required in all cases. The documentation required will vary depending on the circumstances of your case and must be supplied by email. Only use attachments, do not link to any documents.
Photos of supporting documentation are acceptable. In certain circumstances you may be contacted separately and asked to supply relevant original documents.
All students must submit:
- At least one full, recent bank statement. Ideally this will be the most recent online statement you have available, but you don't need to wait for your latest statement. Please submit the most recent statement you have available.
- For any credit/debit over £100, please note beside it what this was for.
- Evidence of rent/mortgage (for example, a copy of a tenancy agreement). If you don't have a formal tenancy agreement, please provide a photo of a signed letter from the person you pay rent to confirming the amount and frequency. Proof must also be annotated on your bank statement.
- If you're in receipt of statutory support from the UK Government, you must submit your Support Notification Form from the Student Loans Company. This must show your entitlement, your Payment Schedule and the dates you'll receive each instalment.
- Students in receipt of a Dependant's Grant should provide evidence of this grant.
- If you're in receipt of any UK benefits or tax credits, including Child Benefit, evidence should be supplied.
- If you're requesting funding for costs not covered by Disabled Students' Allowances (DSAs), you should submit your DSAs letter.
- You should provide evidence of any exceptional costs.
If you're applying for assistance with unexpected financial difficulties, you must provide relevant evidence relating to the nature of the problem. This will depend upon individual circumstances but some examples are as follows:
- Medical certificates, if the financial difficulties relate to illness;
- A death certificate;
- Original scholarship/sponsorship letter and evidence of non-continuation;
- A letter from your parents if they are no longer able to provide funding. This must cover how much they were originally going to provide, how much they are now able to give you, and the reason for the change;
- An employer's redundancy letter, if you have been made redundant.
Decision and notification
In response to the coronavirus situation, Bath Spa University's Student Funding Team are currently working remotely, and can be contacted by email. Scanned applications can be submitted to email@example.com.
If your application is incomplete, or further information or documents are needed, you'll be contacted by email within five working days. This may extend the time taken to make a decision on your application.
We'll send you the decision by email with the outcome of your application. If you're made an award, we'll provide full details on how you'll receive it. We do not give out decisions over the phone so it is important that you check your Bath Spa email.
You're able to appeal an unsuccessful application. We'll provide details of how to make an appeal in your decision email.