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Fees and funding – a guide for parents and supporters

To help manage the cost of university, we provide advice and support from our Student Financial Guidance team and offer a number of generous bursaries and grants.

How does the Student Finance system work? 

Our Student Financial Guidance team have put together plenty of information on our website to guide students through the student finance process, explain how much money is available and how it is repaid. This essential guide includes guidance about student loans for 2023/24, information for freshers, plus money management tips and our student budgeting tool – exclusive to University of Sunderland students.

They've also explained how the loan repayment system works.

The Student Financial Guidance team is one of the University's extensive on-campus student support services and is available to answer queries about any aspect of student finance or money matters. The service is free, confidential, impartial, and non-judgemental.

While the team can't speak to you about a student's specific circumstances without the student's consent, they are always happy to offer general guidance. If you have any questions about any of the above, please call the team on 0191 515 2284 or email studentfinancialguidance@sunderland.ac.uk

Eligibility for support from the Government

The majority of UK students, Irish nationals, and those with EU-settled/pre-settled status studying full-time undergraduate courses are funded by the Student Finance system. This provides assistance with paying tuition fees, plus additional support for those who are eligible, including a maintenance loan for living costs, alongside grants for students with dependants and extra support for disabled students. While most students are eligible for some type of support, it’s always worth checking what a student is specifically eligible for before they apply.

How do they apply?

They apply on the gov.uk website via the Student Finance section, which will open for applications in February/March of Year 13. A student does not need to have a confirmed place on a course before applying for financial support from the Government. We recommend applying for financial support as early as possible to ensure your application is received and processed in good time.

How and when will they repay the loans?

Graduates are expected to start repaying their loan when they earn over £25,000, so you needn't worry about them being under pressure to pay the money back before they have a good graduate job. The repayments are automatically taken from their wages and are currently calculated at 9% of earnings over £25,000. This is quite modest and the payments automatically stop if earnings go below the £25,000 threshold. This information was correct at time of publication (August 2023).

Scholarships and bursaries 

To help manage the cost of university, we offer a number of generous scholarships, bursaries and grants.

Through our scholarships, we recognise and reward the academic achievements of our students or the promise they show in a specific subject area. Some scholarships are linked to specific courses or philanthropic donors. Through our bursaries, we support students from groups underrepresented in higher education, who we identify as being in most financial need. Our scholarships and bursaries are financial awards that do not have to be paid back. There may be other funding sources available to help support a student at university:

  • There are a large number of charities, trusts and other funding organisations in the UK that can offer financial support, usually on the basis of exceptional need or circumstances.
  • Students on eligible healthcare courses may qualify for an NHS Students’ Bursary.
  • There are a limited number of Social Work bursaries available from the NHS.
  • If a student is undertaking teacher training, funding may be available to support them. It depends on a few different things such as the type of training route/programme, the degree/teaching subject, where a student lives, and their personal circumstances.
  • The Ministry of Defence provides financial support to Armed Forces personnel (both serving and service leavers) to study a course at university through the Enhanced Learning Credits Scheme (ELCAS). Please check ELCAS list of eligible courses.

Support for international students

We are pleased to provide a range of support and discounts to students who live outside of the United Kingdom (UK) or Ireland, or who have EU-settled or pre-settled status. You can find out more about international study.

Child Trust Funds

Any child born between 1 September 2002 and 2 January 2011 was eligible to receive at least £250 in a Child Trust Fund, which they could access as soon as they turned 18. Your student may have access to one of these funds which can be withdrawn and used towards their Higher Education studies.

How does the University support students in budgeting and managing money?

Our Student Financial Guidance team has put together a number of useful resources for this very purpose, which include guidance on keeping track of money, budgeting, saving money and part-time work. Learn more about keeping track

More information

Please contact our Student Financial Guidance team for more information.

Email: studentfinancialguidance@sunderland.ac.uk
Tel: 0191 515 2284