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Terms and Conditions for the Financial Support Scheme (Inspire Award) 2023/24

Terms and Conditions for the Financial Support Scheme (Inspire Award) 2023/24

Please note these terms and conditions are reviewed annually.

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1. Award details

2. Value

  1. Basic award
  2. Uplift
  3. How many
  4. Application process

3. Eligibility

  1. Basic award of £150
  2. Uplift of £350
  3. Those not eligible
  4. Proof of eligibility for uplift

4. Use of awards

  1. Use of awards
  2. Transferability of awards
  3. Postage & packing

5. Allocation of uplifts

  1. When Low participation neighbourhood is verified
  2. When Household income is verified
  3. Retrospective payment
  4. Maximum award
  5. Allocation panel
  6. Cut-off dates
  7. Decision of the awards team
  8. Challenging decision of the awards team
  9. Appeals

6. Payment

  1. Crediting accounts
  2. Account set up
  3. Balance
  4. Top up
  5. After graduation

7. Withdrawal or freezing of award

  1. Changing course
  2. Breaks in study
  3. Suspension of study
  4. Repeating a year
  5. Leaving or being removed from your course
  6. Misuse of scheme
  7. Availability

8. What happens in the unlikely event anything goes wrong

9. Student accounts

10. Changes to these terms and conditions

11. John Smith Group

12. Eligibility definitions

13. Record of modifications to terms and conditions


1. Award details

These terms and conditions replace in full all previous terms and conditions and apply only to the academic year 2023/24.

The Inspire Award is given to help support the successful progression of all students. The fund can be used to buy a variety of learning resources from the Inspire website including books, IT equipment and membership of Students' Union clubs and societies.

The Award is available to all new, and progressing, full-time and part-time (pro rata) home and international fee-paying students (defined below), who are registering on an undergraduate course for which they are paying the maximum fee or for a foundation course, both of which are to be delivered by the University at its main campus.  An enhanced award is available to a limited number of UK home fee paying students from low-income households who live in areas where participation in higher education is low.

2. Value

  1. Basic award:  Every home/international fee-paying student has access to £150.  Part time students will have access to the same amount as full time students, but their awards will be pro-rated over the scheduled minimum duration of their courses.  Eligibility criteria apply (see below).
  2. Uplift:  Up to 500 UK home fee paying students will have access to an uplift of £350 to their basic award making a total award in 2023/24 of £500.  Uplifts are made available to those students who meet certain eligibility criteria as verified by the University's Allocation Panel (see below).
  3. How many:  Whilst the basic award of £150 will be available to all home / international students (based on eligibility criteria below), uplifts are currently paid to a maximum of 500 UK home fee paying students.
  4. Application process:  There is no separate application process for either the basic award or uplift. Awards will be made available based on information gained through registration, through student application to the Student Loans Company, and from the Office for Students' POLAR and Gaps postcode look-up page. Eligibility for an uplift is verified by the Allocation Panel (see below).

3. Eligibility

a. Basic award of £150

To be eligible for the £150 award, you must meet all the criteria that apply.  NB: the criteria below are for students registering in or during the 2023/24 academic year.

  • Your course must be delivered by the University and the place of study must be solely the University's main campus
  • You must have met the required admission or progression criteria for their course
  • You must not be on a whole year placement for which no tuition fee charge is incurred. 
  • The award will only be made once for each level of study, so if a level of study is repeated the Inspire award will not be made.
  • Whilst you may have previously studied at the University you are eligible for the award.  However, you must not have previously been in receipt of the Vice Chancellor's Excellence Award or the Salford Student Bursary.

 Fee level

  • You must be registered and be starting a full-time or part-time undergraduate course at level 4 (first year) to be delivered by the University at its main campus having completed a foundation course, either at the University, a partner college or another institution AND must be paying an undergraduate fee of not less than £9,250. This includes those students on a Higher National Certificate (HNC) and those on Integrated Masters courses.
  • You must be registered for or be starting a foundation course (level 3) to be delivered by the University at its main campus (fee £8,250 and above)

b. Uplift of £350

To be awarded the £350 uplift you must meet all the above criteria for the basic £150 plus the following additional criteria:

  • You must consent to the sharing of data submitted to the Student Loans Company
  • You must be from a household with income of £25,000 per annum or less (see eligibility definitions below)
  • You must be from a low participation neighbourhood (see eligibility definitions below)
  • You must be a British citizen (this is so data can be retrieved from the Student Loans Company regarding household income and residency in a low participation neighbourhood)
  • Whilst you may have previously studied at the University, you are eligible for the award.  However, you must not have previously been in receipt of the Vice Chancellor's Excellence Award or the Salford Student Bursary.

The £350 uplift will only be made available to you if:

  • The University has received proof that you meet all of the applicable eligibility criteria (see requirements below) at the point at which you first register. Whilst household income will be reviewed each academic year, the postcode of the household from which you applied for university will be used to determine whether you are from a low Participation Neighbourhood. The only occasion where this will be waived is if you became estranged from your parents shortly after submission of the application and are now living in a Low Participation Neighbourhood.
  • You will be verified by the Allocation Panel (defined below) as being eligible to receive an uplift. If, in any academic year, the number of students who meet all the above eligibility criteria exceeds 500 then, at the University's discretion, further categories may be added to the eligibility criteria for such academic year. The University will notify you if any additional information is required from them to prove eligibility against categories which are added.

c.  You will not be eligible for either the basic £150 award or the uplift if:

  • Your fee status is unresolved
  • You are deferring entry - subject to awards still being available, students holding offers for a deferred entry will be considered for an award the academic year they actually start their course
  • You are studying on a degree apprenticeship course and the Graduate Diploma in Professional Policing Practice.
  • You are studying with partner organisations for a University of Salford award, including foundation year
  • Distance learners  

d.  Proof of eligibility for £350 uplift:

  • Low income:  To evidence 'Low income' (defined below), you must provide the relevant Award Authority with sufficient information to enable a full financial assessment to have been carried out prior to the allocation of awards, and consent from you and your sponsor(s) to share this data. The University will use the result of that assessment to confirm 'Low income' eligibility.  It is your responsibility to ensure that the Award Authority has fully carried out the income assessment prior to awards being made available.
  • Low Participation Neighbourhood (POLAR 4, Quintile 1): Residential postcode data will be collected from the University administrations and registration forms to prove eligibility.  This information will then be cross referenced with the Postcode Checker issued by the Office for Students.

4. Use of awards

  1. Awards are available to spend on a range of learning materials and associated products that are agreed from time to time (see for more details).
  2. Awards are not transferrable and cannot be exchanged for cash.
  3. Purchases will be subject to applicable postage and packing costs.

5. Allocation of uplifts of £350

  1. Your eligibility for an uplift based on low participation neighbourhood is verified when you register for the first year of their course and not in subsequent years.
  2. Your eligibility o for an uplift based on household income is verified each academic year.
  3. Awards cannot be paid for earlier academic years e.g., if you started a course at level 5 you would not be able to claim for the previous year of study      
  4. The maximum award you may receive is £150+£350 uplift + £1,100 care leaver award should you be eligible for all three.
  5. The Allocation Panel will comprise:
    • A member of the University's executive team
    • Deputy Director of Finance
    • Director, Student Administration
    • Planning Manager (representing the Strategy team)
    • Dean of Students
    • CEO, Students' Union
    • Additional representative from the USSU
    • Head of Student Engagement
    • Head of Student Recruitment and Outreach
    • In attendance at the Allocation Panel meeting will be the Student Experience and Engagement Manager.
  6. Cut-off dates for allocation of the award:
    • September intake uplift awards are presented to the Panel for approval during the 2nd  week of November.  This allows time for late applications to be processed by Student Finance.
    • January intake uplift awards to be presented to the Panel for approval during 2nd week of March.  The shorter timeframe is due to the cohort size being significantly lower than the September intake and thus fewer applications require processing by Student Finance.
  7. Should you wish to challenge the decision made by the awards team contact ku/ca/droflas//SUksa.  The askUS team will forward your email to the Head of Student Engagement and a response will be given within ten working days.  Their decision will then be reported to the Allocation Panel.  If you are still not satisfied you may discuss the matter with the Allocation Panel. 
  8. The decision of the Allocation Panel is final. The University will not accept any appeals regarding decisions made by the Allocation Panel.

6. Payment

  1. If eligible an Inspire account will be created for you and funds can be spent at Basic awards will be credited as soon as reasonably practicable after the applicable late registration period has closed.  Uplifts will be credited to accounts as soon as reasonably practicable after late registration periods for the January and September intakes in each academic year have closed. (This is when the Allocation Panel makes its selection - see section 5f above).
  2. You will receive automatic notification that your Inspire account has been credited with the appropriate amount.  No money will be paid into your personal bank accounts.
  3. Any unused balances remaining at the end of any academic year will be rolled over to the next or any subsequent academic year.  Balances will remain available until accounts are frozen or closed.
  4. Top-ups may be made to your account, by arrangement directly Basic awards and uplifts must have been used before top-ups will be available to spend.
  5. At the end of your final year of study, your account will be automatically closed and you will lose your entitlement to any credit balance remaining at that time.

7. Withdrawal or freezing of the award

  1. Changing a course and starting again at level 3 (foundation year) or 4 (first year undergraduate). If you start a course, subsequently change courses starting again at either level 3 or 4, you will not be eligible for the award against the new course. The initial credit made will remain in your account. Once you progress on to the next level up you will be eligible for the appropriate credit to be made for that year of study. For example, were you to start on an undergraduate nursing programme in level 4 but then decide to change to an undergraduate midwifery programme, you will have already received the award for that level and will not receive an additional award on the new programme. Once you move to the next level the award payment will resume.
  2. Temporary breaks in study. If you arrange with the University to interrupt or leave your course on a temporary basis you will have your account frozen until you resume your studies.
  3. Suspension of study. If you are suspended by the University, your account will be frozen until the suspension has been lifted.
  4. Repeat / extended study. A maximum award is made for each level of study and repeating part or all of a level would not entitle you to an additional award. 
  5. Leaving or being removed from the course. If you leave or are removed from your course, you will not be expected to repay any of your award that has already been spent. However, your account will be closed, and any remaining credit balance will not be available to you and entitlement to all future credits will stop on the date you leave or are removed. Unfulfilled orders (if any) that you have placed, and that have been or will be paid for using the awards, will be cancelled. Note also that final year students must spend their credit before they are awarded (note this is before graduation) as the account closes  shortly after you have been  awarded and will no longer be accessible.
  6. Misuse / misconduct. Your account will be closed, and credit balances lost if you misuse or commit any misconduct in connection with your account or in other circumstances if the University deems such action to be necessary or reasonable.
  7. Awards are subject to availability. The University reserves the right to suspend or withdraw future credits of awards at any time without notice. The University will not be responsible if the crediting of any awards and uplifts is delayed or prevented due to circumstances outside its control.

8. What happens in the unlikely event that anything goes wrong?

  1. If you have any queries on your Inspire account or items ordered, please use the 'contact us' link at All queries made to University teams will be referred to that website.
  2. No responsibility is accepted by the University for (i) any learning materials or products that are alleged to be lost, damaged, defective or stolen or are alleged either not to have been delivered or to have been delivered late; or (ii) credits of any refunds to student accounts to which students may from time to time be entitled.

9. Student accounts

You are responsible for all activity on your Inspire account and must keep your username and password confidential and secure.

10. Changes to terms and conditions

The University reserves the right to change these terms and conditions at any time. Material changes will be notified to students.

11. John Smith Group

The Inspire Award Scheme is a collaboration between the University and John Smith & Son Group Limited (JSG). JSG is responsible for the Inspire Award website: and students who buy learning materials and other products via the website are buying from JSG.

12.Eligibility definitions

  • Low income:  Those with an annual household income of £25,000 or less. For full-time students, a full financial assessment must have been carried out by the relevant Award Authority (defined below) and agreement must have been given by the student and their sponsor(s) to share this data. This assessment must have been completed at the time of award allocation and it is the responsibility of the student to ensure that this has been completed by the Award Authority.
  • Low participation neighbourhoods:  Postcodes that are from time to time classified as 'POLAR 4, Quintile 1' by the Office for Students (OfS) - those wards with the lowest participation for entering Higher Education.  For further information, see the following link to the OfS website: OfS postcode checker  
  • Ordinarily resident in the UK:  students are ordinarily resident in the UK if they have habitually, normally and lawfully resided in England, Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland or choice.
  • Award Authority:  Student Finance England / Wales / Norther Ireland or Student Awards Agency for Scotland.

Any queries relating to these terms and conditions should be made by emailing:  ku/ca/droflas//SUksa

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