PGR cost of living bursary

We understand the challenges posed by the increased cost of living in the UK especially over the last year.  As a response, the University is pleased to offer a non-repayable Cost of Living Bursary to eligible PGRs who are in need (subject to a successful application). 

We have designed the application process to be user-friendly and non-invasive.  When applying, you will be asked to provide an explanation of your financial shortfall or need.  We strongly encourage those facing genuine financial difficulties to apply for this bursary. 

The application form includes some questions regarding other forms of support you may have used.  It is important to note that this information will not be considered as part of the assessment of your application and your response to these questions is optional. We have included these additional questions to better understand the financial support and advice systems currently used by our PGRs and to identify common barriers to accessing certain types of funding.  This comprehensive understanding will enable us to evaluate and enhance our University support and funding schemes.

The PGR Cost of Living Bursary is a time-limited grant, with funding allocated for the 2023-24 academic year only. The funding available is fixed, and the value of the award is continually assessed based on demand, our aim is to assist as many PGRs in need as possible. As of December 2023, the maximum bursary will not exceed £250. This opportunity is open to both full and part-time, home, or international PGRs. The maximum award is expected to decrease throughout the year, and once the allocated funds are spent, the fund will close; please note we may not be able to provide advance notice of this closure.

The University also offers the University Financial Assistance Fund (FAF) which is available to registered PGRs who are facing genuine or unexpected financial difficulties and need help in covering the payment of essential living costs.

The eligibility criteria for the PGR Cost of Living Bursary and the Financial Assistance Fund differ, so you can apply for one or both. A key distinction is that the FAF is means-tested, factoring in all available funding, while the PGR Cost of Living Bursary is not. Additionally, while the Cost of Living Bursary offers up to a maximum non-repayable £250 award, the FAF may provide more substantial support to eligible applicants. We strongly encourage all interested PGRs to apply for the PGR Cost of Living Bursary and to also explore the eligibility criteria for the FAF. Simultaneous applications to both schemes can be submitted.

PGR Cost of Living Bursary eligibility

To be eligible for the PGR Cost of Living Bursary you must fulfil the following criteria:

  1. You are a registered PGR (you could have suspended your studies or be classed as ‘under examination’).  You are ineligible to apply once you appear on a Pass List;
  2. You have a UK bank account;
  3. You are classed as either self-funding, unfunded in your overtime period or a funded PGR who receives a maintenance stipend of less than the UKRI minimum award. We may require evidence of your current funding arrangements;
  4. You have not received a previous payment through this scheme;

We kindly ask that applicants allow two to four weeks from the point of submission to be notified of the outcome of their application, as it is subject to internal checks.

Application form

Fill in the application form

Confidentiality and Data Protection

We will only share direct details of your application with those involved in the assessment of hardship/financial need funding at the University.  This includes the University’s Funding team, your Graduate School, Doctoral College Operations and the Dean of the Doctoral College (or their nominee).  We also reserve the right to ask your supervisors for clarifying information, though we will not share your application form with them or disclose your reason for financial shortfall/need. 
We will require your written consent to share your application information with any other relevant parties at the University, such as LUU.
We may use anonymised application information to collect statistics but will not publish any information that may identify you. Application information will be retained in line with GDPR rules.


If you wish to appeal a decision, please email within 15 working days of receiving your outcome.  Appeals will be reviewed by the Dean of the Doctoral College or their nominee.  


Please note that all communication regarding this bursary will be conducted via your University of Leeds email address.  
If you have any further questions or require additional information, please do not hesitate to contact us at

Last updated 15 December 2023