Leave of absence

Information about taking a leave of absence and what you need to do when you return.

What is leave of absence?

During your period of registration, you may experience a range of significant challenges that may compromise your ability to continue to fully engage with your programme of study. In certain situations the most viable course of action may be to take an authorised temporary break from study, known as Leave of Absence.

Requesting a leave of absence

If you are considering  taking a break from your study, you will need to discuss this matter with your tutor / supervisor or wellbeing officer in your School. 

It is important that you apply for your leave of absence at the time that your personal circumstances affect your ability to study.

You must give valid reasons and provide supporting evidence – please refer to Section 6 of the Code of Practice on Leave of Absence Procedures (PDF - 62KB). Applications without appropriate supporting evidence will not be considered and will be returned. Evidence that is not in English must be translated into English by a certified translator.

Once your leave of absence has been approved by your School, it is your responsibility to ensure that your leave of absence form is sent to the Taught Student Administration Team in Registry:

Email: tsa@contacts.bham.ac.uk

Post: Taught Student Administration, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham B15 2TT

Once your leave of absence has been processed, you will receive a confirmation email from Taught Student Administration, who will also inform Student Finance, Housing Services (if you are in University owned accommodation) and if applicable, your local authority (LA).

What will my tuition fee liability be?

The Tuition Fee Liability web-page provides information about the University’s Fee Liability Policy for students who withdraw or take leave of absence. Please consult this page for information about the fee you will be charged.

I am an international student. Are there any visa implications?

If you are an international student in the UK and you hold a student visa, your right to remain in the UK will be affected by taking a break from your study. As a Tier 4 Sponsor, the University is legally required to report a student’s change of registration status to the UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI). You are strongly advised to seek immigration advice from the International Student Advisory Service (ISAS) prior to submitting your leave of absence request.

Returning from a leave of absence

It is your responsibility to agree your return with your School and complete the return from leave of absence form. Once you have completed the form, it will need to be signed by your tutor/supervisor or wellbeing officer in your School.

Once your form has been approved by your School, it is your responsibility to ensure that it is sent to the Taught Student Administration Team in Registry.

If you have been on a leave of absence due to medical reasons, you will need to provide your School with a copy of a medical note confirming that you are fit to resume your programme of study.

Please send your form to the Taught Student Administration Team in Registry:

Email: tsa@contacts.bham.ac.uk

Post: Taught Student Administration, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham B15 2TT

Once your return from leave of absence has been processed, you will receive a confirmation email from Taught Student Administration.

If you are unable to return from leave of absence by your agreed return date, it is your responsibility to notify your School and seek further advice.

Please note that if you do not extend your leave of absence and you do not notify your School that you unable to return on time, you will be deemed to have withdrawn from your programme of study in accordance with the Code of Practice on Leave of Absence Procedures (PDF - 62KB).

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