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We are awaiting full details of 2017-18 funding for NI students. You can find out more about NI funding on the NI Direct website.

If you live in Northern Ireland and remain there to study, you might be eligible for the following financial assistance.


  • You won’t have to pay any tuition fees before you start your course or while you are studying.
  • The maximum tuition fee you can be charged is £3,925 in 2016-17.This applies to new as well as continuing students.
  • You may apply for a student loan for fees which is non income-assessed for the first four years of your course.
  • In your fifth and later years your fees will be paid in full by the Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety (DHSPPS).

Living costs

For the first four years, depending on your personal circumstances, you may be eligible to apply for:

  • Student Loan for maintenance (up to £4,840)
  • Maintenance grant or Special Support grant (up to £3,745)
  • Adult Dependants’ Grant
  • Parents’ Learning Allowance
  • Childcare Grant
  • Travel Grant
  • Disabled Students’ Allowances
  • Loans for extra weeks of study

In the fifth and later years of your course, depending on your personal circumstances, you may be eligible to apply to Student Finance Northern Ireland for a DHSPPS bursary for living cost support:

  • DHSPPS Maintenance Bursary income assessed
  • Reduced rate non-income assessed Student Loan for maintenance (fifth year on)
  • Adult Dependants’ Grant
  • Parents’ Learning Allowance
  • Childcare Grant
  • Travel Costs
  • Disabled Students’ Allowances

Other financial help

  • Check out the Queen’s Bursary Scheme at Northern Ireland’s only Medical School. This is similar to the Access Agreement Bursaries in England, and Welsh universities may have similar schemes.
  • Support Funds
  • University Funds – some universities have their own Hardship Funds
  • Child tax credit
  • Working tax credit
  • Welfare benefits

Studying outside Northern Ireland

If you study in England, Wales or Scotland the living cost and tuition fee support you receive will be broadly the same as if you studied in Northern Ireland. However, there are differences in the amount of tuition fees you will pay.

In England and Wales if you start your course from September 2012 you will be charged £9,250. If you started your course before 2011-12 please check with your university your current fee level. We assume the £9000 fee loan will be increased for 2017-18 to £9,250 but this is not confirmed.

In Scotland you’ll be charged up to £9,000 per year if you started your course from September 2012.

There are Access Agreement Bursaries in England which are similar to the Queens’ Bursary Scheme. Similar schemes may operate in Welsh universities.

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