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Tuition fee loans and financial support – if you come from Scotland

This is an outline of what is available for students from Scotland for 2019–20 entry. Check to find the exact dates, cost of fees and financial support available on university and student funding websites.

Note: to be classed as a student from Scotland, you will normally need to have lived in Scotland for the three years before starting your course. Please see our information on eligibility for details.

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University tuition fees and loans  Funding your living costs
Extra Funding  Repaying your loan

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University tuition fees and loans

If you are going to university in Scotland:
Scottish students attending university in Scotland can be charged up to £1,820 per year for tuition. The Student Awards Agency for Scotland (SAAS) will pay this in full if you are eligible. You need to apply to SAAS for them to do this, and must reapply every year of your course. If you are going to a private university in Scotland you will only get £1,205 but the fees you are charged may be higher.

If you are going to university in England, Northern Ireland or Wales:
At English and Northern Irish universities, you can be charged up to £9,250 per year for tuition; Welsh universities can charge up to £9,000. If you are taking an accelerated degree at a publicly-funded university in England, fees can be up to £11,100 – but these courses take less time to complete than the usual degree.

You do not have to pay tuition fees up front. You need to apply online to SAAS (and reapply every year) for a loan to help with your fees. Loans are up to £9,250 (or £11,100 for an accelerated degree). If you are heading to an 'alternative provider' institution, the maximum tuition fee loan is £6,165 (or £7,400 for an accelerated degree) but providers may charge more; you will need to fund the difference yourself.

All students:
You can apply for funding from the April before your course is due to start. To get funding in time for the start of your course, you should apply by the end of June, ensuring your application form is correctly completed. The final deadline is the end of March the following year.

Funding your living costs

Loans are available from SAAS for students from Scotland studying a full-time course (excluding nursing or midwifery at a Scottish university), who fall into one of the categories below. You must reapply to SAAS every year of your course. Unlike maintenance loans elsewhere in the UK, there is no weighting for where you live while you study – which means no additional support for those who might wish to study in London, or for those who live away from home.

If you have compulsory study abroad as part of your course, you receive the same amount of maintenance loan as you would in the UK. However, if you are eligible for one of the bursaries below and have a paid placement, the bursary will cease for the duration of the placement.

Young students:
You are a 'young' student if you are under 25 years old and classed as 'dependent' i.e. reliant upon your parents' income, do not have a child dependent on you, and aren't married, in a civil partnership or living with a partner.

The loan can be a maximum of £5,750 (means-tested) and a minimum (non-means-tested) of £4,750. If your household income is above £34,000 you will only be able to apply for £4,750 but you won't have to give details of your income in the loan application. You will have to pay the loan back.

If your household income is under £34,000 you may also be eligible for the Young Students' Bursary, which you do not need to repay. Guide amounts are shown below.

Household income of:

£0–20,999

£21,000–23,999

£24,000–33,999

£34,000 +

You can receive a loan of up to:

£5,750

£5,750

£5,750

£4,750

You can receive a bursary of:

£2,000

£1,125

£500

£0

Independent students:
You are an 'independent' student if you are any of the following: you are over 25, have supported yourself for the past three years (on earnings or on benefits) or have no parents to support you. You are also classed as 'independent' if you are parent to a child who lives with you most of the time, or if you are married, in a civil partnership or live with your partner.

You can receive a maximum (means-tested) loan of £6,750 and a minimum (non-means-tested) loan of £4,750. Those with a household income of over £34,000 will only be eligible for the minimum loan of £4,750, and do not need to include details of household income in the loan application. You will have to pay the loan back in due course.

Independent students with a household income of £20,999 or less are also eligible for the Independent Students' Bursary of £1,000, which does not need to be repaid.

Guide amounts are in the table below.

Household income of:

£0–20,999

£21,000–23,999

£24,000–33,999

£34,000 +

You can receive a loan of up to:

£6,750

£6,750

£6,250

£4,750

You can receive a bursary of:

£1,000

£0

£0

£0

Care experienced students:

If you have ever been looked after by a UK local authority and you are under 26 years old when you start your course, you may be eligible for a non-means tested bursary of £8,100. You cannot apply for a loan but can apply for living cost grants in addition to bursary, to help with accommodation costs.

All students:

The loan or bursary is paid into your bank account once you've registered on your course; payments are monthly if you study in Scotland, or at the start of each term if your course is elsewhere in the UK. You can only apply for a loan once in each academic year, so if you are applying for living cost support you should submit this at the same time as applying for a tuition fee loan.

Extra funding

Extra support may also be available if you meet a particular set of criteria. For example, if you have a disability, are responsible financially for after another adult ('adult dependents') or are a lone parent. Read about what other financial support may be available to you.

Repaying your loan

Loan repayments will begin the April after you have left your course. You will also need to be earning over a certain amount each year. You pay a percentage of your income when you reach the threshold. Read more about loan repayments.

  • For more information, see SAAS