The Student Welfare Service manages various funds to assist students in financial difficulty or with additional costs, such as those related to compulsory trips connected to their studies.
This section explains how we may be able to assist some students undertaking full-time undergraduate courses which have a compulsory trip or other type of fieldwork attached to them - either during term-time or one of the vacations.
What is the Fieldwork Bursary?
The Fieldwork Bursary has been introduced to help towards the costs of compulsory field trips undertaken by full-time undergraduate students and to mitigate against potential loss of earnings.
The Bursaries are fixed amounts and will be paid from University Hardship Funds, which are subject to the general eligibility criteria.
For further information about Hardship Fund eligibility visit:
The Fieldwork Bursary is only available to full-time home (UK) undergraduate students.
The Bursary is targeted at students who are from low income families, which will be determined by their statutory support income (i.e. grants and loans).
International students experiencing financial difficulties should seek advice from The International Student Advisers, also based in the Student Welfare Service.
You can apply for a Fieldwork Bursary by completing the “Application for Support from the Higher Education Access to Learning Fund” form.
Any award will be subject to availability of funding - the University receives a limited amount of money and every effort is made to ensure that it remains available throughout the year, however this cannot be guaranteed.
Applications cannot be considered until it has been confirmed that the trip is a compulsory element of your course. It is therefore advisable to apply at least four weeks before your trip so that we can try and ensure you receive any due payment before you travel. However, an application may be considered retrospectively if made within the same academic year as the field trip was taken.
Unfortunately, the Fund cannot be used to pay for fieldwork trips undertaken in a previous academic year. It is therefore advisable to submit an application for support as soon as full details of your trip are known to ensure you don't miss out.
There are two types of Bursary – The Vacation Fieldwork Bursary and the Term-time Fieldwork Bursary.
If you do not receive the maximum available maintenance loan and an element of Maintenance or Special Support Grant you are not eligible to apply for a Vacation or Term-time Fieldwork Bursary. You are, however, entitled to apply for a Hardship Award from the Access to Learning Fund (ALF), providing you have taken the maximum loan that was made availabe to you. Your assessment will take account of some of your fieldwork costs and you may, therefore, receive an award based on the standard calculation outlined in the Access to Learning Fund section.
The following describes the assessment for a Vacation Fieldwork Bursary. The same assessment is applied for the Term-time Bursary but any resulting award will be halved.
Vacation Fieldwork Bursary
The Bursary will consist of a daily allowance. The amount of the daily allowance is determined by your student income.
The maximum award is £500 for a single field trip. The maximum total fieldwork bursary within one academic year is £750.
If you are a full-time student who began your course after September 2012 you will receive
£15 per day allowance for your first field trip if you receive your maximum available maintenance loan plus at least £1558 Maintenance Grant/ Special Support Grant.
- £10 per day allowance for your field trip if you receive your maximum available maintenance loan plus a Maintenance Grant/Special Support Grant of under £1558 .
If you are a full-time student who began your course before September 2012 you will receive
£15 per day allowance for your field trip if you receive your maximum available maintenance loan plus at least £1284 Maintenance/Special Support Grant
£10 per day allowance for your field trip if you receive your maximum available maintenance loan plus a Maintenance/Special Support Grant of under £1284.
Term-time Fieldwork Bursary
Eligible Students will be assessed in the same way as for the Vacation Fieldwork Bursary but will receive 50% of any resulting award. The Bursary is not available for one-day trips, for example visits to exhibitions.
Course began September 2011
Receives maximum available maintenance loan and partial Maintenance Grant
Vacation trip 7 days
Award (7 days @ £10)
Bursary = £70
Term Time trip 4 Days
Award (4 days @ £10) = £40 ÷ 2
Bursary = £20
Course began September 2012
Receives maximum available maintenance loan and maximum Maintenance Grant
Vacation trip 34 Days
Award (34 days days @ £15)= £510
Bursary = £500 (£500 is the maximum allowed for a single trip)
Student takes second vacation trip 20 days
Award (20 days @ £15) = £300
Bursary = £250 (£750 is the maximum allowed in one academic year)
Course began September 2013
Receives maximum available maintenance loan but no Maintenance Grant
- Bursary = £Nil*
* You are however still entitled to apply to the Access to Learning Fund to see if you qualify.
Student Finance Advisers
The Student Finance Advisers can advise on a range of financial matters, including how to maximise your income and the availability of external funding (such as statutory student funding and state benefits), and can offer help with budgeting.
Unitemps is a student employment service which can help you to find work to fit in with your studies . You can also contact the University's Careers Service for advice about job-hunting, including help with your CV.
Access to Learning Fund (ALF)
Students in financial difficulties, whether relating to fieldwork or not, can apply to the ALF for discretionery assistance towards a range of costs, including childcare, travel, accommodation or general living costs.
Assistance is targeted at students most likely to be in financial difficulties such as those with children or other caring responsibilities, disabled students, final year students from low income families and those experiencing a major change in circumstances.
Bank Overdraft Facilities
Most full-time students are entitled to interest-free overdraft facilities – usually starting at around £1,000 in the first year. Pick up a leaflet from your bank or ask to speak to their Student Adviser.
There are a number of grant-making organisations that may consider help for students, particularly in certain priority groups (e.g. lone parents, students with disabilities). Directories are held at main reference libraries such as Bishop Street Reference Library in Leicester city centre.
General Finance: Information and Advice
- Benefits, tax etc
- General advice about University and Higher Education
- Statutory funding for students
- Uniaid Student Calculator
- Money Saving Expert.com advises on all aspects of finance
Information for students with Disabilities
- The AccessAbility Centre: advice and information for Students with Disabilities
- National Bureau for Students with Disabilities
Information for Postgraduate Students
- Prospects offers advice about all aspects of postgraduate study including finding
- The Student Welfare Service also has information for postgraduate funding
- Contact us if you have any further queries