Applying for student finance may initially seem daunting, but there’s lots of support and advice available to support you in your application, and we’re here to provide you with a brief overview of how and when to apply.
If you’re a new undergraduate student studying full-time, you may be able to apply for a Maintenance Loan and Tuition Fee Loan through Student Finance. Although the Tuition Fee Loan is the same amount for all eligible students, the amount you may receive for your Maintenance Loan is dependent on personal circumstance.
You may also be eligible to apply for additional funding, such as a specific bursary or scholarship from your university or college, Disabled Students’ Allowances, Childcare Grant, Parents’ Learning Allowance, or Adult Dependants’ Grant.
How to Apply
First of all, you don’t need a confirmed place at university before starting your application. Just create your student finance account, and apply using your preferred choice of course. You can then change the details once you’ve accepted an offer.
As part of this process, you will be asked for evidence to support your application. In most cases, this can be provided by just filling in the details asked on the application form. If any further evidence is required, Student Finance will contact you. If you need to change any of your details before starting your course, you can do this by using your online student finance account.
You need to re-apply for student finance for each year of study (you will be contacted when it’s time to re-apply), so make sure you keep your log in details safe. The quickest and easiest way to apply is online at www.gov.uk/studentfinance
When to Apply
Applications for 2016 entry aren’t open yet, but keep checking the Student Finance England (SFE) website as details of when you can apply will be online. Once applications are open, you will need to apply by Friday 27th May 2016 – if you apply later than this date, then it can affect when you receive your money.
How do I get paid?
Once SFE have assessed your application, they will send you a Student Finance Entitlement letter showing you what you can get. In order to receive your first payment, you need to have registered at your university or college. Registration is normally done in your first week at university or college, and you may need to take along your Student Finance Entitlement letter.
Once you have registered, your university or college will inform SFE, and you should receive your first payment shortly afterwards. SFE will also then pay your Tuition Fee Loan directly to the university or college.
SFE Student Money Week
For more information about student finance, why not visit SFE’s student finance zone on The Student Room, plus all this week it’s SFE Student Money Week. There are planned live webchats, social media sessions and daily surgeries to help answer your student finance questions.
Please note, if you live outside England, there can be subtle differences in the way student finance is governed. We would advise looking at the student finance website relevant to your country of residence for specific information:
England – www.gov.uk/student-finance
Wales – www.studentfinancewales.co.uk
Scotland – www.saas.gov.uk
Northern Ireland – www.studentfinanceni.co.uk