SOAS University of London

Centre for Development, Environment and Policy (CeDEP)


Some CeDEP students have their fees paid by their employer or other organisation (sponsor). Where a sponsor has confirmed their readiness to pay fees, SOAS is able to invoice the sponsor for those fees. 

This page explains what information SOAS requires from a sponsor in order to issue an invoice and the liability of the student in the event that the sponsor does not pay the fees as agreed.

Once you have completed the application process to study with CeDEP, the next step is to enrol for the particular modules that you will study in a given study session. On CeDEP programmes you pay for modules "as you go". In other words, you only need to pay for modules as you study them. 

The module enrolment form requires you to provide information about how you will pay for the modules that you are enrolling for. One option is that the fees will be paid by a sponsor. If you tick this box, you must then provide CeDEP with an authorised letter of sponsorship from your sponsor (employer or other organisation). This must be an official signed letter on headed notepaper. It must confirm that the tuition fees will be paid and contain the following information:

  • Name of sponsor (organisation)
  • Address and relevant contact details of the sponsor (preferably any of the following – Executive Director of the organisation, Director of Human Resources or Director of Finance, telephone number and email)
  • Student name
  • Student number
  • Programme of study
  • Number of modules that will be paid for and, therefore, the fee that the sponsor will pay.

The original letter can be scanned and should be returned to CeDEP . Once CeDEP has received the letter, you will be enrolled on the modules in question and an invoice will be sent directly to your employer/sponsor.

Please note that we require a letter from your sponsor each time that you register for new modules.

Non-payment by sponsor

In the event of non-payment by a sponsor by the due date of the invoice, the student will become personally liable for the payment of fees in full and the balance will be due immediately. In cases where a sponsor pays less than the full fee, the student remains liable, and will pay the remaining proportion of the fee.

Gaining support from your employer

Support from your employer can come in several forms. It could be financial; it could be allowing study time or it could be recognising the importance of the examination period by not setting you assignments that clash with this. All of these can help you succeed in your studies. The page below is aimed at giving you a methodology for seeking support from your organisation.

Before you start

Know yourself:

  • Why do you want to study this degree?
  • What do you hope to achieve and what are your goals?
  • Why have you chosen this specific degree?
  • How will you manage your study time and combine this with your work commitments?
  • What support are you seeking from your organisation?

You will need to ensure that you fully understand the programme you have chosen, what it entails (eg. number of study hours per week, number of assignments/examinations). You should also be very clear about what you want to achieve as this will form the basis of your request for support from your employer.

Know your organisation:
  • What support is already available from your employer?
  • Who holds training budgets and makes the decision?
  • Have other employees studied on this programme or something similar and what were their experiences? It is useful to talk to other employees who have followed a similar course of study to ascertain how they managed their study time and their experiences.
  • Why will this programme benefit your organisation and its aims?

Understanding the above points will ensure you approach the right people in your organisation and have all the relevant information that they will need to make their decision.

Prepare your case:

  • How important is sponsorship for you to be able to join and complete the programme?
  • Are you willing to negotiate terms with your employer?
  • How much does your line manager/HR department etc. know about the programme?
  • Do you have experience in writing reports or presenting an argument/business case?

Considering all these elements means that you will have all the information you need and how you should request support from your organisation.

Putting together the business case

You may need to present to your organisation or submit a written report or request. Either way, following a simple structure will mean you convey all the information you need without losing your audience. A standard structure would be:

  1. Title
  2. Executive summary
    Summarise your case and the final recommendations.
  3. Introduction
  4. Analysis
    This should review your current work situation, why you want to follow this course of study, what the alternatives are, and how this will benefit your organisation.
  5. Alternatives
    Highlight other programmes that cover a similar subject and what made this programme stand out for you, identify specifics about the individual courses that have direct relevance to you and your teamís objectives (you should avoid just listing the whole programmes). Aim to be clear about the benefits to you, your team and the organisation by following this course of study.
  6. Implementation proposal
    Review how you will combine your studies with your working day and when your organisation can expect to see benefits. How will you take what you learn from your programme of study and apply this to your work. Make sure you remember to include the number of study days and exam periods when you will be out of the office and how you plan to ensure that your work and your team are not affected by your studies.
  7. Any other supporting evidence
    Do not forget to include the cost of your programme and potential length of time to completion.

We are happy to help with any further information you may need to build a proposal or to make direct contact with the relevant people.