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University Financial Assistance Fund

University Financial Assistance Fund

If you are in financial hardship, you may be able to apply to the University Financial Assistance Fund (FAF) at Queen Mary University of London for financial help with your living costs.

You cannot apply for help to pay tuition fees. However, if you are having difficulty paying your tuition fees, contact a Welfare Adviser for advice about your options.

New - online application now available

To apply online: 

  • Log in to your MySis portal and go to the Scholarships and Bursaries page (click + if not visible)
  • Click on 'Apply for Scholarship or Bursary'
  • Select 'Financial Assistance Fund' from the funding type dropdown and complete the online application screens
  • Make sure you click the 'Submit' button on the final screen

The remains available as a download.  Please read the Guidance Notes booklet for more information on how to fill it in.

Contact the Student Enquiry Centre, ground floor, Queens Building for advice if you have any issues accessing the form.

Home/EU Undergraduate students eligible for full Student Finance

If you are a home student or an EU national who is eligible for full Student Finance, you can apply for additional help from the FAF. You must have taken your maximum Student Finance Maintenance Loan in order to apply. You can apply for a standard award which is help with the difference between your income and basic expenses. You can also apply for a non-standard award for help with a sudden financial emergency or special circumstances or costs that other students might not have, which are causing you financial difficulties. You need to explain these in the Personal Statement in Section 10 of the application form. If you need help with your application, contact a Welfare Adviser in the Advice and Counselling Service who can help you to explain your circumstances and the financial help you need.

Consideration is made especially where the Disabled Student Allowance is unable to meet particular needs. If your disability or ongoing ill health prevents you from working part time, you might apply for additional help, if this is causing you financial difficulty.

Whether you are applying for a standard award, or a non-standard award, or both at the same time, there is just a single application form. The deadlines for applying for standard and non-standard awards are stated on the front of the application form. You can apply in each year of your programme and as early in the academic year as you like, once you have enrolled. It might be advisable to apply early as the fund is limited and might run out towards the end of the year. You can apply more than once each year if your circumstances have changed during that year. The way that applications are assessed is more generous for final year students, so even if you applied in earlier years and didn’t get an award, it can still be worth applying in your final year.

Application details are here.

FAF for postgraduate students

As a postgraduate student, you must show that you can pay your tuition fees and that you have made reasonable provision to cover your living costs for you and any dependents before you apply to this fund.

If you are a home postgraduate you may be able to get a standard award to help with a small shortfall between your income and basic expenses.

Home and EU postgraduates can apply for non-standard help if you have an unforeseen financial emergency, or you have special circumstances or costs that other students might not have. But you will need to show that you had made adequate provision to cover your essential costs. You do not normally have to repay this help.

You can apply in each year of your programme and more than once each year if your circumstances change.

Application details are here.

If you would like help applying, especially if you think you have special circumstances, contact a Welfare Adviser at the Advice and Counselling Service before you submit your application.

What evidence do I need to provide with my FAF application?

The application form lists the documentation you need to upload with your application.

It is also usually helpful to include evidence of any unexpected costs and, if you have a disability or ongoing health condition, any relevant medical evidence.

How long will it take for my FAF application to be assessed?

If there are documents missing from your application, the Bursaries Office will usually contact you to tell you what you need to provide. To avoid delays in processing your application, try and submit all the evidence with your original application. Applications can take around four weeks. If you need money more urgently, see the next section for advice about your options.

Will a FAF grant affect my benefit entitlement?

Any grant you get from the FAF will not be counted as income for benefits, because it is paid to you for course related costs. This means that your benefit entitlement should not be affected. If your benefit office asks for documentation to prove that the FAF grant is for course related costs, please email to ask for a letter. 

FAF ‘September payments’ for continuing undergraduate students

At the beginning of September your Student Finance income will be taken into account for any of your means tested welfare benefits (this excludes UC - see UC section) , and your benefits will normally be reduced to term-time amounts, but you will not yet have received your Student Finance. This is explained in more detail in the later section of this advice guide ‘How will my Student Finance be treated as income?’ You can apply to the FAF for the difference between your summer period and term-time benefit amounts until the start of the new academic year. Please contact the Bursaries, Grants and Scholarships Office in June to apply:

Application details are here.

If you have already made a FAF application during the academic year, you will only need to add information to your existing application. You will also need to provide three months’ recent bank statements, and evidence of your term time and summer time benefit amounts.

Emergency and Short Term Loans

If you are in a sudden financial difficulty and you need to borrow a small amount of cash, you can apply for a discretionary emergency loan from the university. This is a small cash loan, which can often be paid to you on the same day that you apply.

If your Student Finance payment is temporarily delayed, and you will have no money for a period of time, you can apply for a short term loan from the university to help pay your living costs until your money arrives. This loan can take a few days to arrange.

Both loans are interest-free. They are administered by the Bursaries, Grants and Scholarships office. To apply, go to the Student Enquiry Centre, ground floor, Queen’s Building, or email or call 020 7882 5079.

If you are awarded an emergency or short term loan from the Bursaries, Grants and Scholarships Office, remember to pay it back as soon as you can. You cannot usually be considered for another loan or an award from Queen Mary hardships funds until you have paid back the money you owe.

Law, regulations and policies can change quickly. The information on our website is given in good faith and has been carefully checked but QMUL cannot accept responsibility for any errors or omissions. QMUL is not responsible for the content or reliability of the linked websites which are provided for further information.

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