Before undertaking a postgraduate course of study it is best to consider how you could fund it. Obtaining funding for postgraduate courses can be difficult. The support which you may have experienced at undergraduate level is not available for further study. There is no Student Funding available from the government.
Postgraduate students therefore normally fund their studies through a number of different options.
You are recommended to apply for funding from Research Councils 1.5 to 2 years before commencement of your course of study.
Research Councils are government funded councils who as part of their remit are responsible for postgraduate funding.There are 7 councils and the competition for grants is intense.
Usually the Councils themselves do not accept direct applications from individual postgraduates though this is not always the case. Research Councils tend to allocate funding to individual departments and institutions and you should enquire directly to the department in the institution in which you want to study.
Most institutions across the UK operate their own bursary and scholarship schemes. This is usually set to the institution’s own set criteria and usually changes on a yearly basis. Applications are made to the relevant department if an award is available.
Disabled Students Allowance (DSA)
Students with disabilities may be eligible to receive DSA which can provide funding towards the cost of equipment, support tutors, travel and other course related costs.
Educational Trusts and Charities
Alternative Educational grants may be available from numerous other sources depending on your individual circumstances. A list of these should be available from public libraries and include:
The Educational Grants Directory
The Charities Digest
The Grants Register
Directory of Grant Making Trusts
The Educational Grants Advisory Service is an independent advice agency for students seeking funding (with a focus on postgraduates). Please visit http://www.family-action.org.uk/section.aspx?id=1037 or telephone 020 7241 7459
Professional and Career Development Loans
Professional and Career Development Loans are bank loans that can be used to help pay for work related learning. You can borrow between £300 and £10,000 to help support the cost of up to two years of learning (or three years if it includes one year’s relevant unpaid practical work). The Young People’s Learning Agency will pay the interest on the loan while you are learning and for one month afterwards. The loan can be used to pay course fees or other costs such as travel and living expenses. You can also use the loan to supplement other forms of support such as grants or bursaries. Because the Professional and Career Development Loan is a commercial loan product, they should only be considered as an option once all other student funding options have been investigated.
For further information on financial assistance to support your learning, please visit www.gov.uk./career-development-loans or Careers Advice on 0800 100 900. Our learning provider registration number is 1188.
Whilst each company’s commitment to staff training is different successful students have managed to convince their employer that it is in the companies’ interest to fund their studies. Some other employers may also take the initiative on this matter and actively push their employees into postgraduate and professional study.
If no funding options are available to you and you are intending to fund the course yourself you will need to consider the full cost of tuition fees and living expenses, especially if you are considering giving up employment to study. The majority of students will supplement their studies with working part time and a large proportion will study part time so that they can maintain their full time careers and levels of income.
Access to Learning Fund
The maximum award available through the Access to Learning Fund for postgraduate students is £500. In addition to being shown to have a shortfall of income students must have made realistic provisions to support their tuition fees and living costs. The Bursary cannot be used to meet the cost of tuition fees for any postgraduate student.
For more information please visit: www.direct.gov.uk/postgraduate| or contact: 0800 100 900.
You may also wish to contact the Student Funding Advisor on 01204 903497 or email@example.com