Withdrawing, suspending or changing your studies

If you withdraw from the University, or make changes to your studies that affect your eligibility for Title IV Direct Loans, we will recalculate your loan entitlement based on the period of attendance/entitlement. As a result, the University or you may be required to return funds to the US Department of Education from the Title IV Direct Loans subsidised/unsubsidised or PLUS loans received/disbursed. Future disbursements may also be affected.

Title IV Direct Loan funds will be returned in the following order:

  • Unsubsidised Federal Stafford loans
  • Subsidised Federal Stafford loans
  • PLUS Loan Funds

The requirements for Title IV Direct Loan funds when you withdraw are separate from the refund policy that the University has. Therefore, you may still owe funds to the University to cover unpaid institutional charges.

All the Title IV Direct Loans scheduled for a disbursement period are considered to have been earned if you have been in attendance (at least half-time) for more than 60% of the payment period. As an example, if you complete 30% of the payment period you will have earned 30% of the assistance you were originally scheduled to receive within that loan period. If you complete 60% of the payment period, you will have earned 100% of the assistance you were scheduled to receive.

If you receive more assistance than was earned, the excess funds must be returned to the US Department of Education by the University and by you to your loan servicer.

If you receive (or the University received on your behalf) less assistance than the amount earned, then you may be able to receive those additional funds as a post-withdrawal disbursement.

The University must return any unearned funds within 45 days of the withdrawal date to the US Department of Education. Any funds that have been disbursed and are regarded as an overpayment must be returned to the loan servicer by the student within the same timeframe.

Please note that a period of suspension from studies which will be longer than 180 days in any 12 month period, for the purposes of Title IV loans, is treated as a withdrawal. The 12-month period begins on the first day of the suspension and the return of Title IV funds policy will apply.

Notification of return of Title IV Direct Loan funds

Upon notice of a withdrawal from study, we will email you to notify you of any funds that may require repayment. You will be emailed a copy of the Return to Title IV Direct Loans calculation, along with details of your loan servicer, so you can make arrangements to repay funds within the 45 day period.

University refund policy

The University has a refund policy which can be found within the Fees and Charges Guidelines available on the Student Finance Office web pages.

University determination of withdrawal date

This will be the date of your decision to withdraw or the date you were told would be your withdrawal date. If there was a period of suspension (leave of absence) before you withdrew, the date of withdrawal is the date of the decision to withdraw, not the date the suspension began (which might be in a previous academic year).

Where you are reported as a fail and withdrawn, the date of withdrawal will be the date that the Board of Studies met to approve such a withdrawal.

If the University is unable to determine the date of withdrawal – for example, due to no communication from you – then the date of withdrawal will be determined by the academic department, normally the last known date of attendance.

Change in your circumstances/withdrawing from studies

Personal circumstances

You must ensure that the details the University holds are correct and up-to-date with your personal details. The Student Records’ database (SAMIS) needs to be kept up-to-date. If you change your address – either your semester-time or home address – please ensure that you update your details.

If, during your studies, you change your name, you will need to complete form CC1 (Notification of Change of Student’s Personal Circumstances) and to provide proof of change (for example, a marriage certificate). Please submit the form to your Academic Department, or the Student Records & Examinations Office, or Student Services.

Academic circumstances – withdraw, suspend or change your studies

If you are considering suspending (leave of absence) your studies, transferring from one programme to another, or withdrawing from your programme, please discuss your situation with your Director of Studies. They will be able to advise you on an appropriate course of action. It is a University Regulation that you attend regularly; if circumstances are such that you are not able to do so, please contact your Director of Studies to discuss your situation and agree an appropriate course of action.

Your personal tutor will also be able to provide support and guidance on matters relating to your programme.

The financial implications of withdrawing from the University or suspending your studies can be significant, so you should also consult with the Admissions and Funding Team (US Loans) who will be able to advise you on implications for fees and on how to suspend any funding you are receiving.

If you have an approved period of suspension from studies which will be longer than 180 days, for the purposes of Title IV loans only this is treated as a withdrawal, not a withdrawal from your programme of study.

If you hold a visa allowing you to study in the UK, you should consult the advice about the Tier 4 visa implications of suspending or withdrawing from your programme.

Please register any change of academic circumstance, including changes to your optional units.

University Regulations for Students include attendance and progress, conferment of qualifications, admissions, academic reviews and appeals.


Approved Leave of Absence (LOA)

A LOA is a temporary interruption/suspension in a student's programme of study. LOA refers to the specific time period during a programme when a student is not in attendance and will return to complete the programme. Students returning from a LOA are not required to re-apply for admission but must re-register for their programme.

Unapproved Leave of Absence

The University may grant a student a LOA that does not meet the conditions to be an approved LOA for Title IV Direct Loans purposes (for example, for academic reasons). However, any LOA that does not meet all of the conditions for an approved LOA is considered a withdrawal for Title IV Direct Loans purposes.

Official Withdrawal

A 'withdrawal' refers to a student’s intent to completely terminate studies at the University with no expectation of return. A student, who subsequently decides to return to their studies, must reapply for admission through the University’s Admissions Office.

Unofficial Withdrawal

An unofficial withdrawal is one where the University has not received notice from the student that the student has ceased or will cease attending.

Note: students who withdraw from their programme or do not receive a ‘pass’ mark at the end of an academic year will have that grade used in calculating the quantitative aspect of the Satisfactory Academic Progress standards. This may affect the student’s future eligibility for financial aid.

Find out how we return your Title IV Direct Loan if there are changes in your circumstances.





+44(0) 1225 383019


US Loans
Student Recruitment & Admissions
Wessex House 6.21
University of Bath
Claverton Down

Opening times

Monday to Friday, 10am to 4pm