18+ Student Finance Factsheet
There are proposed changes to the student finance package for
students starting a full-time higher education course in 2009/2010.
These include changing the previously intended 2009/10 package
of support including eligibility for and levels of grants and loans. All
the proposed changes are subject to consideration by Parliament.
You‟ll be able to get more information through the website.
www.direct.gov.uk/studentfinance in due course
How do I apply for and find out more about financial help?
Students applying for 2009 entry can apply online and find out more by
using Student Finance England on the Directgov website:
Student Finance England will help you to work out the financial support
you‟ll get, apply for finance, and keep track of your payments.
An online calculator will help you work out how much you can get and you will
even see what bursaries may be available at your preferred university or
After you have applied you will be able to manage your own account online.
If you need assistance or advice you will also be able to use the site to
communicate with an advisor using secure messaging.
You can apply online for the academic year 09/10 from mid-
February 2009. Student Finance England recommends that you
apply as early as possible in order to ensure that they receive your
application in good time.
For 2010/11 entry you will be able to apply for student finance at the same
time as you make your UCAS application.
What will I have to pay when I become a student?
As a student you will have to pay:
? Tuition fees and
? Living costs
If you are a full-time student starting a higher education course in 2009, you
can apply for a student loan for fees and living costs and probably a Tuition fees Maintenance Grant.
? It is expected that Universities and Colleges will charge new full-time
undergraduates fees of up to ?3,225 a year for 2009 entry and most
are doing so. A few institutions are charging less (mainly for courses
like HNDs and Foundation Degrees) – check the UCAS website on
www.ucas.com or the university‟s prospectus.
? Fees no longer have to be paid at the same time as studying. You‟ll be
able to study first and pay back when you are earning above ?15,000.
? Fees are lower for English students studying in Scotland (For 2008/09
these were ?1,775 except for medicine courses which were ?2,825 a
Just how do I find out what fees different universities and courses are
The fees being charged will vary between courses as well as between
universities and colleges. Comparing what‟s on offer is important and can be
done by using the university or college prospectuses and websites or the
course search facility on the UCAS website at www.ucas.com. The entry
profile for each course includes „Fees, bursaries and financial support‟ so you
can find out what is being charged for tuition fees by the university or college
and also any bursaries or scholarships on offer.
I’m thinking about going outside England to study - are the fees the same?
From 2009 it is expected that universities and colleges in Wales and Northern
Ireland will be charging up to ?3,225, the same as in England. For Scottish
universities and colleges the tuition fees were ?1,775 per year except for
medicine where fees were ?2,825. The rates for 2009/10 are not available yet.
If you are considering studying outside England you will need to check these
tuition fee amounts using the Directgov website
Tuition fee loans
You can apply for a loan to cover the cost of your fees and then repay the fee
loan in the same way as your other student loan – once you have finished studying and are earning over the repayment threshold of ?15,000 per year.
? These are not means tested and so are available to all eligible, full-time
students to cover their tuition fees.
? All loans (living costs and tuition fee loans) are added together and you
pay back 9% of your earnings above ?15,000 a year - so someone
earning the average starting salary of ?18,000 would repay ?5.19 per
Student loan for living costs
? You can apply for a Maintenance loan to help with your living costs.
? 72% of the maintenance loan is not income assessed; 28% is income
? This loan for 2009 entrants is a maximum of ?4,950 (higher in London
at ?6,928 - lower if living at home at ?3,838). Do check out the rates if applying for entry in 2009. These amounts are
expected to be available. You can check up-to-date rates using the
Directgov website www.direct.gov.uk/studentfinance
How do I repay my loan?
All your loans - both tuition fee and living costs loans - are added together
and repayments start from the April after you have left your course and are
earning more than ?15,000 per year. Repayment rate is 9% of any earnings
over ?15,000. Repayments are deducted by your employer along with tax and
National Insurance contributions. If you stopped earning or your earnings fell
below ?15,000 your repayments would stop. Any outstanding balance is
written off after 25 years. Additional early repayments can be made. If you are
entering repayment in April 2012 or later there is the option of a repayment
holiday for up to five years at a time of your choice.
Non-repayable grants – Maintenance Grant
? Students from households with income up to ?25,000 could be eligible
for a full non-repayable Maintenance grant of up to ?2,906 per year.
? If your household income is between ?25,000 and around ?50,020 you
may still qualify for a partial Maintenance grant.
? This is paid in three instalments to help you with living and study costs.
? The amount of maintenance loan available is reduced by ?0.50 for
every ?1 of maintenance grant to which students are entitled.
Special Support Grant
? Students getting or eligible for means tested benefits like Housing
Benefit or Income Support could be given a special support grant (SSG)
of up to ?2,835 a year was available for 2008-09.
? The SSG will be based on household income and does not have to be
? Students getting the SSG, instead of the Maintenance grant, will not
have their Maintenance Loan reduced.
? Eligibility for means tested benefits like Housing Benefit is not affected
by the SSG - it is not counted as income.
I’m disabled – is there any extra help for disabled students?
There are Disabled Students‟ Allowances (DSAs) to help with the extra costs
you incur in attending your course as a direct result of your disability. How
much you can get does not depend on your income or that of your household.
This is extra financial help over and above any grants, loans and bursaries
and unlike a student loan, does not have to be repaid.
If you are physically disabled or have mental-health difficulties, you will need
to provide medical proof of your disability, such as a letter from your doctor or
an appropriate specialist. If you have a specific learning difficulty (for example
dyslexia) your LA will need evidence of this.
Depending on your needs extra support could include a General Disabled
Student‟s Allowance of up to ?1,724 each year, a specialist equipment
allowance of up to ?5,161 for the whole course, a non-medical helper‟s
allowance of up to ?20,520 each year and help towards the additional costs of
travelling to university or college.
For more information check the Directgov website at:
You can also download or order a copy of „Bridging the gap: a guide to the
Disabled Students‟ Allowances in Higher Education‟.
You can also get more help and information from Skill (the National Bureau
for Students with Disabilities) using their website www.skill.org.uk or their free helpline on 0800 328 5050. I’m hoping to do a degree in Social Work - is there any extra
Yes, there is a bursary offered as an incentive to train as a social worker. This
bursary is administered by the NHS Business Services Authority but is not an
NHS bursary. The package includes a non-income assessed bursary basic
grant and tuition fees with a fixed contribution of ?575 towards your placement
expenses. For more information go to www.nhsbsa.nhs.uk/students or call
the NHS Business Services Authority (Social Work Bursary helpline) on 0845
610 1122 - Monday to Friday between 8am and 6pm and Saturday between
9am and 3pm.
You can also get information about social work on the social work careers
helpline 0845 604 6404 or check out the website:
Are there any incentives to train as a teacher?
Yes - you can get up-to-date details of these incentives for taking an initial
teacher training course in England by calling the Training and Development
Agency for Schools‟ Teaching Information line on 0845 6000 991 or visit their
website at www.tda.gov.uk
What about help for training in health care?
You can find more information about NHS bursaries, which are available for
full or part time students intending to study a pre-registration health
professional course, by calling one of these numbers:
? 0845 358 6655 (for students who want to study in England)
? 0144 323 3333 (for students who want to study in Wales)
? 0131 476 8227 (for students who want to study in Scotland)
? 0282 565 3333 (for students who want to study in Northern Ireland) or by visiting the NHS Student Bursaries‟ website at
You must be accepted onto an NHS funded place to be eligible and can
apply through the NHS Student Bursaries‟ website.
You can ring the NHS Careers help line on 0845 60 60 655 for information on
University and college bursaries & scholarships
Bursaries or scholarships are on offer from many universities and colleges.
This money does not have to be paid back and can be given in a variety of
ways; for example it could be cash, discounted accommodation costs or even
IT equipment such as a laptop.
All colleges and universities charging the full ?3,225 tuition fees will have to
pay a minimum bursary (expected to be ?319) to any students in receipt of the
full ?2,906 Maintenance Grant. Many universities are offering a lot more than
the minimum. How much is available depends on the university or college so
you should check their prospectuses or websites for more information.
Details of what individual institutions are offering can be found using the
Directgov Bursary map or the UCAS course entry profiles
Extra help from your university or college
Colleges and universities also have Access to Learning funds should you get
into financial difficulties while studying or find yourself facing extra costs in
completing your course. Students are assessed on individual financial need,
with some groups of students being given priority for help e.g. care-leavers
and lone parents. Payments are usually given as a non-repayable grant but
funds are limited. There are no guarantees about securing an award; it
depends on who else applies for help and whether their needs are greater
than yours. Normally you apply when you have started your course, but if you
know you are going to face difficulties (eg you are a care-leaver and have
nowhere to live in the holidays) make contact straightaway, to „earmark‟ your
Employer sponsorships These are arrangements whereby employers give financial support, and often
work experience, to students subject to various conditions.
How much can you earn?
This can vary substantially depending upon the size of the company and the
type of industry you work in. However, on average the figures tend to be for:
? a GAP year before you begin studying - ?10,000 per annum.
? a “Sandwich” placement year during studies - ?12,000 per annum.
? vacation work - ?200-?250 per week .
? bursary payments - ?1000-?3,000 per year.
To find out all the details and links to sponsorship company websites go to
If you have children
You will be treated as an independent student. Your own parents' income will
not be taken into account when calculating your grant and loan entitlement.
If you are a full time student with dependent children in registered or approved
childcare then you may be eligible for help with childcare costs. The amount
you receive will be dependent upon your household income and is based on
85% of your actual childcare costs. For 2008-/09 this was up to ?148.75 a
week (one child) or ?255 a week (two or more children) and is non-repayable.
Parents’ learning allowance For help with course-related costs for students with dependent children. It is
non-repayable and worth up to ?1,508 a year depending upon your household
income. For more information visit the student finance
Child Tax Credit from the HM Revenue & Customs Students with dependent children are eligible for Child Tax Credit from
HMRC. The money you get depends on your circumstances. You qualify at a
higher rate if your child or one of your children is under one year old or is
disabled. Students receiving the maximum amount of Child Tax Credit are
entitled to free school meals for their children. You can find details on
www.HMRC.gov.uk/taxcredits where you can claim online or
telephone 0845 300 3900.
Adult dependents’ grant
If you have a husband, wife or civil partner or another adult family member
who depends on you financially, you may be eligible for up to ?2,642 a year.
The amount you receive will be dependent upon your household income and
Contacts and information resources is non-repayable. For more information on this grant check the student
finance site www.directgov.uk/studentfinance
? A GUIDE TO FINANCIAL SUPPORT FOR HIGHER EDUCATION
STUDENTS (Student Finance Direct) A comprehensive guide to
financial help arrangements for Higher Education and for help with
completing your application form. Available from the free brochure
ordering line on 0800 731 9133 or print/download from the
StudentFinanceDirect website at www.direct.gov.uk/studentfinance
? BRIDGING THE GAP A guide to funding support for disabled students,
available to download from www.direct.gov.uk/en/disabledpeople
? DIRECTGOV BURSARY MAP find what support is available using this
map with links to the bursary information web page of each university
and college in England http://bursarymap.direct.gov.uk/
? DIRECTORY OF GRANT MAKING TRUSTS (published by the Chariti
es Aid Foundation and sold through the Directory of Social Change at
This book may be available through your local library.
? EDUCATIONAL GRANTS ADVISORY SERVICE (EGAS) is an
independent advice agency for people wanting to get funding for
further/higher education. They advise on student funding and sources
of funding, and also keep a database of trusts and charities that assist
students financially. For further information and to apply for funding go
to www.family-action.org.uk and look under „Our Services‟. or send a
stamped addressed envelope to 501-505 Kingsland Road, Dalston,
London E8 4AU. For detailed advice call the student advice line on
020 7254 6251 on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 2pm to
? EDUCATIONAL GRANTS DIRECTORY (DSC) available to buy from
This book may be available through your local library.
? FINANCE FOR STUDENTS (Connexions Herefordshire &
Worcestershire) Information sheet 2.30.
? HOW TO GET FINANCIAL HELP AS A STUDENT (DIUS - Aimhigher
student finance) new edition will be published February 2009 and
available through schools and colleges
? INTO HIGHER EDUCATION A guide for disabled people planning to
apply to higher education. Available from SKILL Chapter House, 18-20
Crucifix Lane, London SE1 3JW. Visit the website www.skill.org.uk or
phone the information line on 0800 328 5050 (Minicom 0800 068 2422)
? NATIONAL UNION OF STUDENTS The NUS produce a series of
information sheets on student finance. To view and download them, go
? NHS COURSES IN ENGLAND & WALES Careers Helpline: 0845 60
60 655 www.nhscareers.nhs.uk NHS Bursaries in England: 0845 358
6655 NHS Bursaries in Wales: 0144 323 3333 NHS Bursaries in
Scotland: 0131 476 8227
? SCHOLARSHIP SEARCH UK www.scholarship-search.org.uk
provides information about other sources of funding for undergraduates.
? STUDENTS’ MONEY MATTERS (Trotman) May be available through
your school/college Connexions library, your local Connexions centre
? STUDENT LIFE – A SURVIVAL GUIDE (Lifetime Careers in
association with UCAS) May be available through your school/college
Connexions library, your local Connexions centre or library.
? TEACHER TRAINING For information on support available for
undergraduate and postgraduate courses: Tel: 0845 6000 991 (English
speaking) Tel: 0845 6000 922 (Welsh speaking) MINICOM (for people
with hearing difficulties): 01245 454343 www.tda.gov.uk
? UNIVERSITY SCHOLARSHIPS, AWARDS AND BURSARIES (Brian
Heap -Trotman) Gives details of scholarships, awards and prizes at
universities and colleges. May be available through your school/college
Connexions library, your local Connexions centre or library
www.buttletrust.org - help for care leavers
Sponsorships/bursaries with the armed forces:
www.raf.mod.uk/ www.army.mod.uk/ www.royal-navy.mod.uk/
Finance for overseas study
A European Commission exchange programme that enables students in 31
European countries to study for part of their degree in another country. You
would still continue to receive any student grant or loan you are entitled to
and you may be eligible for a supplementary Erasmus grant towards the
extra costs of studying abroad. Further information is available from UK
Erasmus National Agency, British Council, 28 Park Place, Cardiff, CF10
Copyright Connexions Herefordshire and Worcestershire 2008 (updated