Funding your course

Research shows that cost is one of the main reasons people hold back from returning to education.

Depending on your chosen course, many providers offer free or low cost courses in a variety of subjects. As there are such a large range of courses and funding sources, outlined below are some general principles.

For more detailed information please speak to your provider.

  • If you are unemployed or living in a household with a low income or you are in receipt of a means-tested benefit, you could be eligible for financial assistance towards course fees, travel, books, membership fees and childcare
  • Your first full level 2 course will be funded if you are unemployed or aged 19-23, as will enrolment onto entry level or level 1 courses
  • Your first full level 3 course will be funded if you are aged 19-23
  • If you are looking for funding for a further Level 2 course, you may be able to apply for a Professional and Career Development Loan or be eligible to apply for a bursary to assist with your course fees.
  • You can study for a maths or English qualification for free if you don’t already have a Level 2 qualification in that subject
  • You can study for a GCSE qualification in maths or English for free if you don’t already have a grade 4/C in that subject
  • If you are 19 or over and are planning to study for a qualification at Level 3 to 6 you may qualify for an Advanced Learner Loan. These loans help to pay your fees. To find out if you are eligible click here: https://www.gov.uk/advanced-learner-loan
  • If you choose to study an Access to Higher Education course you may not have to pay back your tuition fees if you go on to study a related higher education qualification
  • Watch now: The government has posted some films featuring students who have taken out these loans