If you are studying at Higher Education level, you can apply for financial support from the government through Student Finance England. The main sources of help available are grants and allowances which you don’t pay back and loans which you do.

Full time study

If you are eligible you can apply for:

  • Tuition Fee Loan – to help with the cost of tuition fees
  • Maintenance Loan – to help with accommodation and other living costs
  • Maintenance Grant – to help with living costs, this will awarded based household income (continuing students only)
  • Childcare Grant – to help with childcare costs for children under 15, or under 17 if they have special educational needs Parents
  • Learning Allowance – to help students with children pay for books, study materials and travel

Please note that if a loan is taken out for an Access to Higher Education course then that loan is written off if the student progresses to a degree course and does not have to be repaid.

Part time study

If you are eligible you can apply for:

  • Tuition Fee Loan – to help with the cost of tuition fees
  • Disabled Students’ Allowance – to help students with a disability. The student support you get depends on individual needs and not on income.

How you qualify

To qualify you must be:

  • Living in the UK on the first day of your course and have lived in the UK, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man for three years immediately before this
  • Enrolling on an eligible course at Higher Education level, including Degrees, HNDs, HNCs and Foundation Degrees

For more information about eligibility pleasevisit www.gov.uk/student-finance/who-qualifies.

19+ Advanced Learner Loan

The Advanced Learning Loan is a non-means tested student loan that you can take out with The Student Loans Company to cover the fees of a Level 3 - Level 6 course. The Student Loans Company will make payments directly to the College so you can focus on your learning.

To find out more, visit our 19+ Advanced Learner Loan page here.


The amount that you can get is dependent on your individual circumstances.

If you are not sure if you can afford to study, you can use the finance calculator at the following website to find out what you may be entitled to www.gov.uk/student-finance-calculator

All eligible students are entitled to a Tuition Fee Loan which is not income assessed.

You can apply for a loan as long as the course you are doing is at a higher level to that which you have already achieved. So for example, if you already have a HNC (Level 4) you can apply for funding for an HND (Level 5) but if you already have a HND you cannot apply for funding for a HNC.

If you have had a 19+ Advanced Learning loan you will also be able to apply for a Higher Education loan.


Applying is easy, you can apply for a Higher Education loan and/ or grant on-line at the following website



You only need to pay back Tuition Fee Loans and Maintenance Loans, but not other student finance, e.g. grants and allowances. You still have to repay your student loan if you leave your course early.

As stated above, Access students progressing on to a degree course will not have to repay the loan for their Access course.

You will only start repaying your loan if you are working and earning over £21,000 per year. You will only pay back 9% of any income above £21,000 a year, see the table below for examples of what you will repay:

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