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Student fees and finance for where you live

Get your head around student finance with our breakdown below. We've listed tuition fee costs, student loans and financial support wherever you are in the UK.

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    Tuition fees: how much you'll pay, by country

    Tuition fees have been frozen for 2018-19 entrants since their much-publicised rise in 2017. The figures shown below are the maximum amounts you could be charged in university tuition fees, based on where you live and where you're planning to study, for courses beginning in 2018. Many courses charge less: 

    • If you're from England: up to £9,250 per year when studying in England, Scotland or Northern Ireland; up to £9,000 if you're studying in Wales. 
    • If you're from Scotland: free if you're studying in Scotland; up to £9,250 per year in England, Wales or Northern Ireland.
    • If you're from Wales: up to £9,000 per year if you're studying in Wales; up to £9,250 in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland.
    • If you're from Northern Ireland: up to £4,030 per year for studying in Northern Ireland or up to £9,250 in England, Scotland or Wales.
    Bear in mind that sandwich or work placement fees will differ. We cover this below.

    How do I know what my university will charge me?

    For the 2017 university intake onwards, the Government introduced plans to allow unis to raise the tuition fees they charge from £9,000 to £9,250.
     
    However, not every university was able to raise their tuition cap – only those deemed to have a “high” quality of teaching according to the Government’s Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) were eligible.

    A high rating is a gold or silver rating. See if the university you're considering received a gold, silver or bronze TEF rating in 2017.

    Although it's useful to look at these ratings, don't let them dictate your university choice too much – they're not absolute performance tables, like uni league tables.
     
    A small number of courses at universities will be able to charge the maximum fee such as law or medicine.
     
    Students that were partially through their course when the fees rose in September 2017 might have seen their fees rise too – but this depends on the university.

    ​Student loans and help: what's available, where?

    Figures shown below are the maximum amounts available. The actual amount you receive will depend on where you're studying, your course fees and household income.

    It’s always best to apply for student finance as soon as you can. You don’t have to have a confirmed place before you apply.

    Students from England

    A Tuition Fee Loan worth up to a maximum of £9,250 per year is available to cover fees each year and is directly paid to your university. 

    The second element of your student finance package is the Maintenance Loan, to help with living costs if your household income falls below a certain amount. If you'll be living away from home while studying, a maximum of £8,430 per year is available - this increases to £11,002 if you'll studying in London. What you can get depends on your individual circumstances; so it's important your parents provide the necessary, correct information, documents and evidence to support your finance application.

    What you can get depends on your individual circumstances; so it's important your parents provide the necessary, correct information, documents and evidence to support your finance application.

    When do you need to apply by?

    For students starting in September 2018, the deadline for student finance application is 31 May 2018 to get your finance for the start of term. 



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    Students from Scotland

    If you're Scottish and go to a Scottish university, you won't pay anything in tuition fees (but you still need to apply officially through the Student Awards Agency Scotland). If you're studying in either England, Wales or Northern Ireland, a Tuition Fee Loan of up to £9,250 per year is available to cover these. 

    To help cover your living costs, a (repayable) Maintenance Loan is available of up to £5,750 per year, depending on your household income. If you're under 25, you can apply for an additional, (non-repayable) Bursary worth up to £1,875 if your household income is under £18,999.

    When do you need to apply by?

    To get your finance for September 2018, the deadline is 31 March 2018.

    Students from Wales

    Welsh universities can charge up to £9,000 a year in tuition fees. If you're a Welsh student, you can apply for a Tuition Fee Loan to cover up to £4,046 of this, plus a fee grant of £4,954 to cover the rest.

    For living costs, you can apply for a means-tested Maintenance Loan based on your annual household income. There are also non-repayable grants available such as the Welsh Government Learning Grant and Special Support Grant, though there are some terms as to which of these you can apply for and how much you can receive.

    When do you need to apply?

    The exact deadline for 2018 entrants hasn’t been announced yet. But the 2017 finance deadline to guarantee student finance was received for the start of term, was 12 May 2017, so it makes sense to aim for mid-May. Check back here to see the precise deadline.

    Students from Northern Ireland

    If you're from Northern Ireland and staying there to study, you'll pay a maximum of £4,030 per year in tuition fees, or up to £9,250 per year if you're studying in England, Scotland or Wales. In any case, you can apply for a Tuition Fee Loan to cover the full amount payable.

    A Maintenance Loan is available to help cover living expenses – up to £4,840 if you're living away from home, increasing to £6,780 if you're living in London. You can get more if your course lasts 30+ weeks.

    There are also non-repayable grants which you can apply for based on personal circumstances, although there are restrictions depending on which you apply for. There is a Maintenance Grant if your household income is below £41,065, with a full grant of £3,475 available for households earning £19,203 or less. 

    When do I need to apply by?

    The exact deadline for 2018 hasn’t been announced, but the 2017 finance deadline to guarantee student finance was received for the start of term, was 30 June 2017, so it makes sense to sort out your finance by this point for 2018 too.

    Can I apply for student finance after the deadline?

    The deadlines are in place to ensure you have finance for the start of term. However, you can apply for student finance nine months after the start of the academic year.

    Work placement and sandwich course fees

    A sandwich course is a three, four or five  year undergraduate course with time spent on placement, usually in industry or business. 

    You’ll usually get either a tuition fee waiver (so you don’t pay any tuition fees at all) or a reduction in tuition fees for the time you’re on placement - and you might even get paid, although employers aren’t legally obligated to pay you. 

    Contact your uni to find out their set-up with sandwich courses, and whether it would be the right decision for you.

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