Student Finance in a Nutshell

Posted on Thursday, September 5, 2019 by Amy Liston1 comment


As we get into the new terms for education it’s good to know what decisions to make in order to make the next year a little easier.  Because if you’re learning new things, meeting new people, moving into student accommodation (and finding new bars...) then why let money become an prominent feature of your worries?

In this blog we’ll cover differences between the types of loans and how to apply, so that you can cross one more thing of your list and know how to get the best income for you!

It’s good to know some of the loans and funding available, but before we do that, we need to know what types of student funding there are!

Grants – A grant is a sum of money provided by a government, company or even a person which does not need to be paid back. 

Bursaries – Bursaries are typically given to students of a lower income or on specific courses and are normally awarded on a first-come-first-serve basis. Similar to a grant, the bursary typically doesn’t need to be paid back unless circumstances change.

Scholarships – This is a financial award given to students based on their academic and personal achievements.

Sponsorships – These are harder to come across, but courses sponsored by companies can not only pay your fees but also your salary, as you’ll be working at the same time as studying.

Regardless of the name, all these loans do very similar things – it just depends on which one fits you and your circumstances best.  It is important to note that loans and eligibility may vary dependent on location as things work differently in Scotland and England etc.

If you’re in Scotland, the first means of funding you probably learned about before branching off from school to further education was SAAS (Student Awards Agency Scotland) which is an agency of the Scottish Government that provides financial support to students; both undergraduate and post graduate.  You can find the application process here.

When it comes to typical student finance, there are different avenues to take depending on if you’re new full-time, continuing full-time or part time.  Your tuition fee loan will be paid directly to your place of education and you’ll have to pay it back; your financial figure will be dependent on your student role and your accommodation, household income and/or your course intensity.

As a new full-time student you will be eligible for up to £9,250 per academic year (2019-2020).  Continuing full-time is the same, and part time can get you up to £6,935 per academic year.


But what is eligibility?

Your eligibility can depend on the following:

Your place of education, your course, age, location and if you have been in higher education before.  Some students make the mistake of not checking – have a look in case, otherwise you could be missing out on some money!

(You can check your eligibility for these loans, along with additional information here.)

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1 comment on "Student Finance in a Nutshell"

  • Ganesh says: 12 September 2019 at 13:12

    Good to see the Scotland government helping the students in such ways.. Grants and Bursaries are something new which I haven't heard of, also what is so beneficial is that students need not pay them back unlike educational loans..
    Nice article Amy , loved it.