Funding for students at university
Thinking about going to uni or college on or after September 2018?
While you’re studying you’ll have two main costs – tuition fees and living costs. You could still get a range of student finance to help with both, and from September 2018 you will get more help with living costs during term time.
Tuition Fee Support
You will be eligible to apply for a non means-tested tuition fee loan to cover the fee charged by your university. This will be available, wherever you decide to study in the UK and will be paid directly to your university.
Living Cost Support
You will be eligible to apply for more support to help meet your daily living costs.
All students will be eligible to receive support equivalent to the National Living Wage.
The support will be made up of the following:
- A universal non means-tested grant of £1,000
All students will be eligible to receive this grant regardless of household income.
- A means-tested maintenance grant
Depending on your household income and if you live away from home during term time the total maximum living cost grant you could get is £8,100 (if you live outside London) or £10,124 (if you live in London). If you live at home during term time, the total maximum living cost grant you could get is £6,650.
- A maintenance loan
A maintenance loan will be available to top up the amount of support you are eligible for. So, if you get a partial maintenance grant you could take out a larger living cost loan to cover the difference between the grant amount you get and the maximum level of living cost support you’re entitled to.
Every eligible part-time undergraduate would get support similar to a full-time undergraduate, but the amounts will vary proportionately according to the amount of time spent studying.
If you’re disabled and/or have a child or an adult who depends on you financially, you can still apply for a Disabled Students’ Allowance, Dependants’ Grant, Childcare Grant and Parents’ Learning Allowance to help out whilst you’re studying. Find out more on the Student Finance Wales website.
Remember, grants do not have to be paid back but loans do and interest is applied immediately. It’s important to consider this before you take out a tuition fee loan and/or a living cost loan.
However, you won’t have to start paying back what you borrow until you’ve finished studying or left your course and your income is over the current repayment threshold of £21,000 per year. Any outstanding amount owed on your student loan will be cancelled after 30 years.
When you do start repaying you could be eligible to have up to £1,500 taken off your first living cost loan by the Welsh Government.
Repayments will be taken from your salary and the amount you repay each month is based on your income, not what you borrowed. Find out more on the Student Loans Company website.
How to apply
The application service for 2018/19 enrolments won’t go live until next year. When the time comes the quickest and easiest way to apply is online at www.studentfinancewales.co.uk.
You should apply as soon as possible once the application service opens to make sure you get your money in time for the start of your course.
Bursaries, Scholarships and more…
Your university may offer a bursary or scholarship – it’s worth checking with them.
Other websites to try for bursaries and scholarships include:
Your university may have a financial Contingency Fund to help students in serious financial hardship.
Your local public library should have directories of charitable trusts that offer grants and awards:
- the Educational Grants Directory
- the Charities Digest
- the Grants Register
- the Directory of Grant Making Trusts
- Your parents or carer may continue to get Child Benefit for you until your 19th birthday
- You may be able to claim other benefits if you're a disabled student on a low income, such as Housing Benefit and Council Tax Benefit
NHS Wales bursaries are available when you study certain health-related courses such as dentistry or medicine.
Medical students can also apply for a Travel Grant to meet the costs of traveling to a placement here or abroad.
If you’re starting a full-time or part-time postgraduate Master’s course (taught or research based) from 1 August 2017, you can apply for a Postgraduate Loan of up to £10,280 as a contribution towards your course and living costs.
You may also be able to receive a grant from a research council to help fund your postgraduate course. To find out more information on research councils contact the student support team at your university.
Visit the Student Finance Wales website for more information on the Postgraduate Student Loan.
Note that you cannot apply for a postgraduate Student Loan for other postgraduate study, such as a PHD. Check the Eligibility page for more information.
Other Possible sources:
- Research Councils
- Charities and Trust Funds, including those funded by the UK government
- Higher Education Institutions
- Overseas governments (international students only)
- Employers (if you have a job)
- Professional and Career Development Loans
- Self-funding (including family funds)
Note that Professional Career Development Loans tend to be for more vocational courses.
To find out more about what financial help you could get to fund your studies, contact Student Finance Wales on 0300 200 4050, or visit the Student Finance Wales website.