If you are funded by one of the UKRI Research Councils you must follow the UKRI process for extensions. You should only apply to the College scheme if your Training Grant cannot support you. Your case for support should specify this, which will be verified by your department.
Eligibility Criteria for the College Scheme
You are eligible to apply through the College’s Stipend Extension Scheme if you have concerns about how you will finish your programme because your PhD has been disrupted by College closures, is funded by a fixed term grant that was competitively won (e.g., a scholarship from the College, or a national, international or industrial funder) and your funder is unable to extend your stipend. Through the College’s Stipend Extension Scheme, you may apply for up to 12 weeks extended stipend. If your funder can provide less than 12 weeks support you may also use this scheme to apply for the remaining support so that up to 12 weeks extension has been considered. In these cases you should state how many weeks your funder was able to support and outline the context, e.g.:
- Less than 12 weeks was available due to co-funding
- The funder only offered less than 12 weeks
- You asked for less than 12 weeks but now need additional time and the funder won’t consider a further application.
If your request is supported, a pro-rata stipend will be paid to you through additional bursary payments. This will be equal to the College’s minimum stipend for the academic year in which your stipend extension is awarded.
You can only claim extension for periods of disruption where you were not:
- in the Writing Up Phase (Completing Research Status or Writing up Away from College) of your PhD or,
- interrupting your studies
Ineligible to apply to the College’s Stipend Extension Scheme?
The College’s financial hardship funds have been reviewed in light of the pandemic and remain a source of support for those students not assisted by this policy. There may also be support available to you via Departmental Funds or external discipline-based organisations – your Senior Tutor (PGR) is a good source of advice.
If you are eligible to apply to the College Stipend Extension Scheme, please note that the College will be considering applications in “waves,” according to funding end-date.
The sixth and final wave was available to eligible students whose funding finishes 01 October 2022 – 31 March 2023. The sixth wave was also open to eligible students whose funding finished 01 March 2020 to 30 September 2022 (inclusive) who missed the previous waves.
Criteria for Stipend Extension
In order to provide up to 12 weeks of stipend payments the College will need to establish that between 16 March 2020 – 30 September 2020, you were severely impacted by any of the following criteria and, that you have exhausted all reasonable adjustments to your research plan:
- Significant disruption to progress due to the lack of access to necessary equipment (for example experimental laboratory equipment or computing equipment), facilities or off-campus field work in the UK or abroad).
- Additional caring responsibilities that have significantly impacted progress.
- Deficiency of local environment such that remote working is not possible or of very poor quality, significantly impacting progress. Reasons for this might include difficulty accessing technology, a quiet space to work, or time to dedicate to study, for example.
To ensure your claim is considered you need to work with your supervisor to develop the case to support your application. Make sure that you capture information so that an assessment of your circumstances can be made against one or more of the 3 criteria (listed above). Your application will be reviewed by your Departmental Director of Postgraduate Studies and must be approved by your Head of Department.
Following Departmental approval, your application will be reviewed centrally by a Moderating Panel to ensure consistency in decision-making. For information, the Moderating Panel is comprised of the Faculty Vice Deans for Research, Vice Provost for Research and Enterprise, representatives from the Research Office and Deputy Directors of the Graduate School.
If your main reason for disruption to your studies is sickness, you should contact your home department to discuss if you will be covered by its sickness policy.
Where you have experienced disruption to progress because you have signed-up to be a Covid-19 specific volunteer or redeployment programme and have interrupted your studies to do so, it is expected that you would not need to use this policy to cover that period.
Ready to apply?
The 6th wave has now closed. Your department will be informed of the outcome of your application by Friday 24 June 2022.
Students who apply to the College for an extension to their stipend should note that in addition to your Head of Department, Director of Postgraduate Studies and PGR Administrator, staff within the Graduate School, Research Office and the International Relations Office (in the case of international scholarships) will have access to the data you submit as part of your application. Members of the Moderating Panel (as listed above) will also be able to see your data.
The College has published its appeals procedure which applies to all students who are eligible to apply for an extension to their stipend as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. This includes:
- students who applied through the College’s stipend extension scheme or,
- students who applied for a UKRI costed extension either via the training grant or via the College managed UKRI process
Managing stipend and registration extension requests, moving forward.
Once the sixth and final College wave has concluded, Departments will be expected to manage locally on-going requests for stipend extensions from students still impacted by the pandemic. The Graduate School is working with the Research Office and the Registry to develop guidance to support this.