FAQs for current undergraduate and postgraduate coursework recipients
If you do not find an answer to your question below please do not hesitate to
1. What should I do if I have not met the minimum academic requirements of my scholarship?
2. Do I have to declare my scholarship to the Australian Taxation Office?
3. Do I have to declare my scholarship be declared to Centrelink?
4. Will my scholarship affect my Centrelink payment?
5. What is the difference between the new and old Commonwealth scholarships?
6. When are payments made?
7. What should I do if I have not received my payment?
8. I’m currently in receipt of a scholarship and want to apply for another one. Is that possible?
9. What happens if I change to part-time study after receiving my scholarship payment?
10. I’ve changed my details, how do I let the Scholarships and Financial Support Service know?
It is understandable that sometimes personal or medical issues can affect your ability to study. If you have not met the minimum academic requirements, you will be contacted and asked to ‘show cause’. This is a process whereby you explain to the University the reasons for non-adherence. Supporting evidence will aid your case.
Assessment of ‘show cause’ procedure may take up to 6 weeks. In this time, you will not receive any payments from the University. Should you require interim assistance, please see the information on financial assistance at http://sydney.edu.au/scholarships/current/finance.shtml.
Your scholarship, bursary, educational allowance or educational assistance is exempt from income tax under ss 51-10 and 51-35 of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997 if:
- you are a full-time student at a school, college or university; and
- the scholarship is provided principally for educational purposes; and
- you are not required to become, or continue to be, an employee of the entity or authority; and
- you are not required to enter into, or continue to be a party to, a contract with the entity or authority that is wholly or principally for your labour.
If you have received approval to hold your scholarship part-time, you may be liable to pay tax on your scholarship.
Please visit the Australian Taxation Office website to assess if your scholarship is taxable.
There is also an online tool available which aids in identifying if your scholarship is taxable.
If you are in receipt of a payment, it MUST be declared to Centrelink. All income has to be declared; please contact Centrelink for more information.
If you do not declare your scholarship, you may end up owing Centrelink money.
In 2014, up to $7,485 (indexed) of equity and merit-based scholarships are exempt from the income test. This applies to all payments with a personal, partner or parental income test. This means these scholarships will have less of an impact on your fortnightly Centrelink payment. Any amount of the scholarships over $7,485 will still be considered personal income and may affect your payment rate. The excess amount will be averaged over the remaining fortnights of the period of the scholarship. This means it will have a consistent impact on your fortnightly rate of payment. See the Centrelink website for further details.
If you began receiving a Commonwealth scholarship (CECS, CAS, NAS, NPS) in 2009 or before, you will continue to receive payment from the University of Sydney.
However, you MUST let Centrelink know if you are receiving a Commonwealth Scholarship from the University.
From 2010, the Commonwealth Scholarships are only available for indigenous students. Other eligible students will be paid the Start-up Scholarship and, if relevant, the Relocation Scholarship directly from Centrelink; these are categorised as Commonwealth income support.
Most payments for undergraduate and postgraduate coursework scholarships are made on a semesterly basis, following the HECS Census date. Commonwealth scholarships are paid after HECS Census date.
Postgraduate research scholarships are usually paid on a fortnightly basis.
If you have not received payment or if you believe you have been paid incorrectly, please contact the Scholarships and Financial Support Service as soon as possible either by or call 1800 SYD UNI (1800 793 864).
Scholarships are tagged as ‘primary’ and ‘secondary’. A 'primary' scholarship is valued at $6000 or more p.a. A 'secondary' scholarship is valued at less than $6000 p.a. The classification of a scholarship is available in its terms and conditions.
You can hold only one ‘primary’ scholarship at a time; there is no restriction as to the number of ‘secondary’ scholarships that you can hold. Additionally, there are no restrictions regarding the number of external scholarships you can hold.
In the event that you change to part-time study after receiving payment, the Scholarships and Financial Support Service will contact you to make necessary arrangements. This may either be paying half of the amount back to the Scholarships and Financial Support Service or not being paid for the next semester.
Please update your details on the Sydney Student portal, which can be accessed via MyUni. Your new bank details should be entered under the MyFinance tab.
If you experience difficulty entering your bank details, or with the Sydney Student portal in general, please contact Sydney Student directly at 1800 SYD UNI (1800 793 864).