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Am I entitled to a postgraduate loan?

Are you thinking about doing a postgraduate course? Did you know the government is now offering up to £10,280 in loans for those wanting to continue their studies and expand knowledge with further learning experiences? Well, you do now! Not everyone is eligible to apply for a loan so continue reading to find out if you’re entitled to a postgraduate loan!

Who can apply for a postgraduate loan?

We’ve decided to keep it simple from the off. If you can answer these few questions with a big ‘YES!’ you’ll more than likely be accepted.

1. Have you lived in the UK for the past 3 years plus as a UK citizen?

2. Are you under the ages of 60?

3. Is it a full master’s course/equivalent that you are applying for?

4. Are you going to be studying your full master’s course/equivalent at a university in the UK?

5. Is this your first time?

If you’re not a UK citizen but have lived in the EU for over 3 years and hold an EU citizen status and can confirm that you’ll be living in England when enrolling on your course you could be accepted for a postgraduate loan.

How to apply for a postgraduate loan

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To apply for a postgraduate loan you can either:

  • Apply via post, all you’ll need to do is download the forms from your loan provider, fill them out and post them
  • Apply online – this can be done by using an existing student finance account of a new one

How much does a postgraduate course cost?

What you pay for a postgraduate course varies. It is all determined by the type of course you do, how much it costs the university to manage, the level of the course and the duration. The average postgraduate course costs £8,000 that’s why you can apply for a loan for up to £10,280 to cover your course costs and also expenses.

How will I receive my postgraduate loan?

Your postgraduate loan will be paid in three installments directly to you. If you currently receive benefits from the government your postgraduate loan can affect this so make sure you speak to the Department for Work and Pensions so you know where you stand and what you’re entitled to.

Repaying the postgraduate loan

You’ll only start to repay your postgraduate loan once you’re earning over £21,000 and have left the course. You’ll then pay 6% on anything you earn over the £21,000 threshold. The outstanding amount left over from your loan balance will be written off after 30 years.

REMEMBER: Your postgraduate loan will not affect your credit rating either!

Postgraduate loan - Good or bad?

Don’t happen to have a spare £10,000 lying around to pay for a postgraduate course, neither do I! If that’s the case a postgraduate loan is an excellent choice.

Now onto the bad; sometimes the £10,000 doesn’t cover the cost of a postgraduate loan and you’ll have to find a further grand or two to add onto that already hefty ten thousand. Another major disadvantage to the postgraduate loan is that the government can change their minds at any time they like. It doesn’t seem fair to us either but unfortunately, it’s true. So while currently any outstanding amount gets wiped out after 30 years that could change at any point and you might have to pay it all back! Also, you might have to pay a higher percentage back each year at a lower earning salary.

Over to you

Obviously, you don’t have to do a postgraduate course once graduating from university only you can decide that by what direction you want to head with your career journey. There are also alternative methods for a postgraduate loan. We’ve listed a few below for you to choose from if you don’t feel a postgraduate loan is for you:

If you’re open to moving abroad some countries even offer postgraduate courses for free!

Find graduate opportunities at Careermap.

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