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Funding for Postgraduate Study in UK

There are several different ways to get funding for postgraduate study in the United Kingdom, such as bursaries, grants, loans, and studentships.

Note: Generally, you would need to send in a funding application before the spring if you plan to start studying in the autumn.

How to Get a Postgraduate Master’s Loan

Funding from a Postgraduate Master’s Loan can help cover course fees and living expenses while you study for a master’s degree. The loan amounts are:

  • £11,836 (for courses starting on or after the 1st of August 2022)
  • £11,570 (for courses starting between the 1st of August 2021 and the 31st of July 2022)
  • £11,222 (for courses starting between the 1st of August 2020 and the 31st of July 2021)

Postgraduate Doctoral Loan

What if you intend to start a doctoral degree in the United Kingdom? If this is the case, if you get accepted for a Postgraduate Doctoral Loan, it can help with your course fees and living costs.

The maximum amounts available from doctoral loans are:

  • £27,892 (for courses starting on or after the 1st of August 2022)
  • £27,265 (for courses starting between the 1st of August 2021 and the 31st of July 2022)
  • £26,445 (for courses starting between the 1st of August 2020 and the 31st of July 2021)

Note: This type of postgraduate funding is not based on income (yours or that of your family) and would be paid in installments direct to you.

Funding for Studentships

In most cases, a studentship is a postgraduate position with funding attached towards course fees, student living expenses (or both).

Note: The UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) website contains further advice and information about funding opportunities for studentships.

Teacher Training and Healthcare Courses

Further information about funding for teacher training, social work, medical and healthcare courses – and how to apply for it – is also available from:

Note: Student Finance England also provide support for graduate-entry medical students with fees charged over £3,465. You can also search online to find other ways to fund postgraduate study.

Grants from Charities and Trusts

Postgraduate students can get grants from some charities and trusts (even those who have a ‘poorer’ financial background). Even so, they tend to cater for students who have already achieved some academic excellence.

Check these publications (e.g. at your local library) for further information about getting a grant from a charity or trust:

  • Charities Digest
  • Directory of Grant Making Trusts
  • Educational Grants Directory
  • Grants Register

Note: The Family Action’s Grant Service also provides a way to search for grants programmes that help families and individuals when they need it most.

Postgraduate Funding from Learned Societies

Some of the learned societies offer limited funding for postgraduate or postdoctoral research, such as the:

Other Methods of Funding for Postgraduate Study

You might also get financial help from an individual while you study for a degree. It is not uncommon for people to donate awards to help postgraduates (usually through your university or college). Others include:

The YouTube video contains some useful tips about how to gain postgraduate funding and what help you can get from charities, the university, the government and your employer.

£5,000 Maintenance Grants 2022

The UK Government announced extra funding of £5,000 for certain students from September 2020. They will pay it on top of any existing support (e.g. student loans).

If you are a student who is studying to become a paramedic, radiographer, or physiotherapist you will be among those receiving the new financial support.

The full list of new and continuing students who will benefit from the additional funding includes:

  • Dental hygiene or dental therapy (level 5 courses)
  • Dietetics
  • Midwifery
  • Nursing (adult, child, mental health, learning disability, joint nursing/social work)
  • Occupational therapy
  • Operating department practitioner (level 5 courses)
  • Orthoptics
  • Orthotics and prosthetics
  • Paramedicine
  • Physiotherapy
  • Podiatry or chiropody
  • Radiography (diagnostic and therapeutic)
  • Speech and language therapy

Note: The Professional and Career Development Loans scheme has closed for new applications. But, the closure does not affect anyone with an existing loan.

How to Get Postgraduate Funding in United Kingdom