Student Finance: Undergraduate
What is Student Finance?
Student Finance is funding support available to Home students through the government. You may be able to borrow money to help pay for university or college tuition fees and to help with living costs.
A Home student is an individual who must be resident and ‘settled’ in the UK on ‘the first day of the first academic year’ of their course to be eligible for home student status. With some exceptions, they must also have been ‘ordinarily resident’ in the UK for the three years before that date. The three-year residency rule applies to UK nationals who have been living abroad.
Students might be eligible for home fee status and student support if they meet the criteria for a limited group of exceptional categories. These are:
- Refugees and family members;
- Persons granted humanitarian protection and family members;
- Persons granted stateless leave and family members;
- Persons with section 67 leave;
- Persons granted Calais leave to remain;
- Persons granted indefinite leave to remain as a victim of domestic violence or abuse;
- Persons granted indefinite leave to remain as a bereaved partner;
- Persons granted leave under the Afghan Relocations and Assistance Policy or the Afghan Citizens Resettlement Scheme, and British nationals evacuated or assisted in leaving Afghanistan;
- Persons granted leave under the Ukraine schemes.
Students might be eligible under the ‘long residence’ category if they are not a UK national and either:
- Under 18 and have lived in the UK for at least 7 years;
- 18 or over and have lived in the UK for at least 20 years (or at least half of their life).
Getting Student Finance in 2023 to 2024
Whether you qualify for student finance depends on:
- your university or college
- your course
- if you’ve studied a higher education course before
- your age
- your nationality or residency status
For further information please visit the gov.uk website.
What Financial Support is Available through Student Finance?
A Tuition Fee Loan covers the cost of the tuition fees charged by the university or college. This is paid directly to the University or College.
A Maintenance Loan is funding to help with day-to-day costs, such as rent or food, while studying. It’s paid directly to the student – how much a student is entitled to is based on the student’s household income.
Disabled Students’ Allowance (DSA) helps pay for extra costs a student might have as a direct result of their disability, including a long-term health condition, mental-health condition or specific learning difficulty such as dyslexia or dyspraxia. (This is available to full-time and part-time students and doesn’t usually need to be paid back. For further information please visit the gov.uk website.
Childcare Grant is additional income assessed funding to help students with children pay the costs of childcare during study. This is available to full-time students only and doesn’t usually need to be paid back. For further information please visit the gov.uk website.
Parents’ Learning Allowance is additional funding to help students who are also parents. This can be used for everyday costs of study, such as books, study materials and travel. This is available to full-time students only and doesn’t usually need to be paid back. For further information please visit the gov.uk website.
Adult Dependants’ Grant is additional funding to help students who are financially responsible for another adult. This is available to full-time students only and doesn’t usually need to be paid back. For further information please visit the gov.uk website.
You may be able to get a loan if your part-time course has a ‘course intensity’ of 25% or more.
‘Course intensity’ measures how much of your course you complete each year compared to an equivalent full-time course.
You can work this out by comparing your module credits with the number of module credits a full-time student will study. You’ll be asked how many credits you’ll study when you apply for the loan.
Only the following courses at Bradford College attract the Maintenance loan which you may be eligible for:
- a first degree, for example BA, BSc or BEd
- an Initial Teacher Training course (degree level or above)
How and When to Apply
Applications are now open to apply for student finance funding if you’re starting a full-time or part-time undergraduate course for the 2023-24 academic year. Applications are also open for continuing students.
It can take up to six weeks to process, so apply now to make sure your funding is in place in time to start your course.
You don’t need a confirmed place at a university or college to apply. Student Finance applications can be updated and changed through your online account.
The quickest and easiest way to apply is online via the gov.uk website.
Interest and Repayment
Interest is charged from the day the first payment is made to the student’s university or college.
The Tuition Fee Loan and the maintenance loan, plus any interest, has to be paid back but not until the student has finished or left their course and their income is over the repayment threshold.
Students starting a course on or after 1 August 2023 will be on the new repayment Plan 5, and the earliest they’ll start repaying is April 2026.
Ineligible for Student Finance Tuition Fee Loan – Paying your Tuition Fees
If you are a Home student and do not have the Tuition Fee Loan available, it is your responsibility to ensure alternative provision is in place to pay your tuition fees. You must either pay the whole cost at registration or pay by direct‐debit which is the preferred method of the College.
Where fees are paid by direct debit, the duration of the plan would normally be 8 months or less per annum. The initial payment will equate to 25% of the course fee with the outstanding 75% paid over the remaining 7 months.
A direct debit form can be requested and completed at registration or by emailing HE Student Finance on [email protected]
Students who require a payment plan outside of the standard terms will need to put their request in writing to the HE Student Finance team for consideration to the Credit and Fees Manager.
Previous Study – Compelling Personal Reasons
Students can usually only get student finance for their first undergraduate higher education qualification, even if their previous course was self-funded.
If you were unable to continue to the next year of your course or had to leave your course due to personal reasons, you could get an extra year of tuition fee support by applying for Compelling Personal Reasons through Student Finance England.
Common reasons for applying for an extra year include:
- mental health
- a caring responsibility
For further information and how to apply please visit the gov.uk website
Please note, if your Compelling Personal Reasons application is still being assessed whilst you have enrolled onto a course you are still be liable for payment of your tuition fees. Any payment made towards your tuition fees will be refunded if your CPR application is approved.