We have compiled the most frequently asked questions and answers about further studies in order to help bring you one step closer to achieving your dreams and preparing you for a better future.
Can I work and study at the same time?
Yes, but sometimes it will depend on which course you choose.
There are courses you can study 2 days a week. If you work during weekdays, you can also study 2 evenings and a Saturday. These courses are still classed full time, so you will finish on time like most other full time students, who go to university 5 days a week. These courses qualify for the Maintenance Loan. For part time courses you can only apply for a tuition fee loan.
The academic year is only 7 months long, meaning you will get 4 months off every year. The most popular courses include business management, IT, accounting and healthcare. This is because most of the other courses are 3+ days a week. Courses such as Nursing are almost always 4 to 5 days a week and you need to have top grades to apply.
I did not finish my school/college, I did not get good grades OR I lost my certificates. Can I still apply?
Yes, you can still apply!
If you are 21 years of age or older, there are some degree courses you can apply for without having any previous qualifications at all. If you are under 21 then you will have to do a level 3 course first, which we can help you with.
Am I too old to study?
No. You are never too old to study! Our oldest student so far was 60 but she was one of the most brilliant and dedicated students we have had!
There is no upper age limit for the tuition fee loan, however, if you are 60 or over you do not get a maintenance loan.
I am not sure about my English Level, will I be able to do the course?
If you are unsure about your English, you can come and speak to us about it. We will assess your English and will be able to advise you on your study options. There is always something we can do to help
What financial help is there for me?
If you are a UK National/ permanent resident or a EUROPEAN UNION (EU) national (and if you are currently living in the UK), in addition to tuition fee loan, you can also apply for Maintenance Loan.
However, if you are a European Union National living in the UK for less than 5 years, you will need to apply as a migrant worker. We have a specialist team with years of experience in this who can guide and support you fully with every stage of your application.
Single independent students living and studying in London usually get about £11,000 maintenance loan per year (this is separate to the course fee). If you live and study outside of London then this is usually about £8,700 per year.
If you financially support someone over the age of 18 and their own income is less then £3,800 per year, you can apply for an adult dependant grant of up to £2,800 a year. It does not matter which country your Adult dependant lives in as long as you can provide evidence of support, and their low income, you are able to apply.
I have a child, is there extra support available to me?
It can be difficult to look after children, study and work at the same time.
Students with children can apply for a Childcare Grant of:
This grant is for nursery or a child minder, this is paid on top of your student finance and you don’t have to pay it back.
Do I have to repay my student loan?
You only start repaying your loan once you’ve graduated and you’re earning more than £25,000 a year. After that, you’ll pay back 9% of anything you earn over £25,000. So if you’re earning £30,000 an year, you repay £37.00 each month.
If your earnings drop below £25,000, your repayments will stop. if you live in England and took out a student loan on or after 1 September 2012, it will be cancelled 30 years after you become eligible to repay.
Example repayment amounts
|Annual income before tax||Monthly salary||Monthly repayment|
|Up to £25,000||£2,083||£0|
When and how do I apply?
We have made the application process simple, clear and easy for you. Below are the ways to apply:
Visit our Office
Visit our office and our dedicated team will support you through every stage of the application. Simply book an appointment and bring your documents with you to the appointment, and complete everything on the day.
The documents we usually ask for are an ID or a passport, a basic CV, a cover letter, and a copy of your certificates (if you have any). We will check everything and our friendly team will be available to help answer any questions you may have.
Apply by email
If you are unable to visit us, you can email us your documents, we will check everything and ensure that it meets requirements. Again if there are any changes or improvements needed, our staff will be more then happy to assist you and your application can be processed this way.
What happens after I apply?
Once we have all the required documents, you will be invited to complete your admissions assessments. These could involve an interview and English assessment. Depending on the course or University you choose, some of the assessments are done at our centre, especially if you are applying in Birmingham.
Before you are booked for your assessments, you will be given all the necessary information about the assessments and you will also be provided with an opportunity to attend a preparatory lesson where we will go through all the interview questions and prepare you for your English assessments to ensure you pass the first time
What if I fail my assessments?
If you fail any of your assessment, we will provide feedback on why you have failed and help you with the next steps. In most cases we will try and offer you a second option with a different university or college
You do not have the course that I want to study. How can you help me?
We are always adding new courses to our profile, but if we do not have the course you want, you can contact us for advice and we will try our best to sign post you in the right direction.
When do courses start?
Courses Start in January, April, May, June and September.
Although we do accept applications until a few days before the course starts, it is always best to apply 2 to 3 months in advance. This gives you enough time to organise yourself, apply for student finance etc.
Do I have to pay any money to you or anyone else?
Our services are free to use. We do not charge any fee to the applicants for the services that we provide and you should not make any payments to us or anyone purporting to be acting on our behalf. At the start of the application process we sign a document with you to confirm that you will not be charged any fee.
Will student loan affect my credit history?
No. Student loans aren’t the same as normal debt, and they don’t appear on your credit history. This means lenders won’t know about it by searching your credit report.
Do you advise on benefits such as housing benefit job seekers allowance etc.?
We do not advise on benefits and we recommend that you should speak to your local benefit office or citizens advice Bureau for matters related to social benefits. Further details can be found on www.citizensadvice.org.uk