Students on Further Education Non-Advanced Courses
There are a number of funding options available if you are studying a full-time, non-advanced course:
- National Certificate (NC)
- Scottish Vocational Qualification (SVQ)
- Vocationally Related Qualification (VRQ)
Most students on these types of courses will not be asked to pay tuition fees. However, you must apply for a Fees Award on the Funding Application Form so that your eligibility for exemption from fees can be confirmed. The Tuition Fee for a full-time, non-advanced course is not subject to means-testing nor is entitlement affected by any previous study. If you do not meet residence or other requirements, you will be required to pay the tuition fees yourself.
Types of funding
The following funding options may be available, but these are subject to individual circumstances:
Students on a full-time, non-advanced course such as a NC, SGA or SVQ may be awarded a bursary by the College, subject to the availability of funds. This applies to those who are resident in Scotland, with the exception of Orkney and Shetland - students from these Islands should apply directly to their Island’s Council for Bursary support. Students from England and Wales should apply to their own Local Education Authority for Bursary support and those from Northern Ireland should apply to their local Education and Libraries Board.
A bursary is a means-tested form of student support. The amount awarded will depend on many factors including the financial situation of you/your household - parent(s), spouse or partner. If you are eligible for a bursary you may receive an allowance towards your maintenance, travel and course materials. A bursary is normally paid in normally paid in 4 weekly instalments directly into your bank account. The first instalment is paid as soon as possible following your enrolment on a course. Whilst students should aim to attend all timetabled classes, the College will also look at engagement and progression when deciding on payment of funds.
To apply for a bursary, you should complete the Online Funding Application Form which will be sent to you, via a link, once you have been offered a place on a course. We advise that you submit this online application as soon as possible, before the closing dates detailed in your account. Entitlement depends on a number of important factors and the funds available are limited, so please note that you may not automatically qualify for a bursary and some applications may be unsuccessful. If you are unsure about your eligibility regarding a North East Scotland College bursary you should contact the Student Advice Centre.
Bursary applications submitted after the 6th week from the start date of the course will only be assessed from the date of submission, and will not be backdated to the start of the course.
Application forms, guides and further information relating to Bursary payments and attendance monitoring are available on StudentNet.
Bursary Maintenance Award
This form of funding is in place to maintain the student, and will be awarded on a means-tested basis. The income of the student and the household, whether that be parent(s) or spouse/partner, will be considered. If you are entitled to an EMA Award then this type of funding will not apply, unless it is accepted by the College that you must live away from your parental home during your study with us.
Materials and Travel Bursary
If you will be aged under 18 at the start of your course it is likely that you will be eligible for this award, regardless of household income, if your home is more than 2 miles away from College.
Education Maintenance Allowance (EMA)
If your date of birth falls between 26th August 2001 and 28th February 2004 you may be eligible for EMA from 26th August 2019. If your date of birth falls between 1st October 2003 and 28th February 2004, your eligibility for EMA will come into effect from January 6th 2020. Visit the EMA website for more information
The EMA is a weekly payment of £30, based on household income, issued to help maintain the student. The EMA will be paid every two weeks in arrears into your bank account, providing that you meet the terms and conditions of a Learning Agreement to be signed at the start of your course. Payments are not made during College holidays including the October break, Christmas and Easter.
To apply, you should complete the Online Funding Application Form which will be sent to you, via a link, once you have been offered a place on a course. We advise that you submit this online application as soon as possible, before the closing dates detailed in your account. Entitlement depends on a number of important factors and the funds available are limited, so please note that you may not automatically qualify for an EMA and some applications may be unsuccessful.
EMA applications submitted after the 6th week from the start date of the course will only be assessed from the date of submission, and will not be backdated to the start of the course. If you are unsure about your eligibility regarding an EMA or North East Scotland College bursary you should contact the Student Advice Centre.
Application forms, guides and further information relating to EMA payments and attendance monitoring are available on StudentNet.
‘Exceptional Entrants’ to College (also referred to as Winter Leavers)
If your date of birth falls between 1st October 2003 and 28th February 2004, you are not legally permitted to leave school until after 20th December 2019. Although your school may give you permission to attend College from August 2019, you are not entitled to any payments from Bursary or EMA funds until after the official school leaving date.
If you need help with travel costs between August and December you should contact, at the earliest opportunity, your school for an application form (PTU100) to apply for help through the Local Authority Education Department.
Please note that Winter Leavers who start courses before their official school leaving date will not be eligible to receive Course Materials payments until January 2020.
Can I get help to cover additional costs as a result of my disability?
Should a student require help with any additional costs incurred as a result of a disability, learning difficulty or additional learning requirements, they are encouraged to contact the Student Advice Centre.
Applications for Support
Orkney and Shetland
If you live in Orkney or Shetland you should apply to North East Scotland College for a Fees Award and Education Maintenance Allowance (EMA) if eligible, but you must apply to Orkney or Shetland Islands Council for any Bursary support.
England, Wales and Northern Ireland
Students from England or Wales should apply to their local educational authorities, and students from Northern Ireland can apply to their Education and Libraries Board for support regarding fees.
Students on Higher Education Advanced Courses
There are a number of funding options available if you are studying a full-time, advanced course:
- Higher National Certificate (HNC)
- Higher National Diploma (HND)
Types of funding
When it comes to funding your full-time study at advanced level at North East Scotland College, you may be eligible for the following types of funding:
You must apply to have your Tuition Fees paid by SAAS, and you must also attend the course past the cut-off date of 1st December. Assessment for Tuition Fees is based on your residency status, and whether you have done a course of higher education before. If you don't apply the College will charge you the Tuition Fee.
Elements of this are means-tested, and any eligible student can apply for the non-means tested element. Find out more on the SAAS website
Young Student Bursary
This is a non-repayable grant for students who are from households with a gross income of less than £34,000. To be eligible students must be under 25 at the start of their course, single and not independent.
Independent Student Bursary
This is a non-repayable grant for students with gross household income below £20,999 - students must be over 25 at the start of their course or satisfy the criteria to be classed as an independent student.
These are non-repayable and available to students in certain categories. They are normally means-tested, e.g. Dependants Grant, Lone Parents Grant, Vacation Care Leavers Grant or Disabled Students Allowance.
How to Apply
You can apply for funding online via the Student Awards Agency Scotland (SAAS) website.
Loans and grants are paid in monthly installments on the 7th of each month. Payments are usually directed straight into your chosen bank account.
If you are unsure of your situation and don’t know whether you are in a position to receive any funding, you should contact SAAS in the first instance. You can also seek advice from the Student Advice Centre at North East Scotland College.
Repaying your loan
Your loan must be repaid when you are employed and receiving a certain level of salary (currently this is £18,330 per annum). Your repayments will start the April after you graduate or leave your course, and the amount paid back will depend on your earnings.
Need some more information?
For more information please contact the Student Loans Company:
Student Loans Company
Telephone: 0300 100 0609
On the 1 February 2018, the Scottish Government made a commitment to eligible EU nationals commencing their studies in academic year 2019–2020 that they will continue to receive student support.More information for EU National students can be found on the SAAS website
If you would like to talk about funding, and what you may or not be eligible to receive, our friendly and experienced student advisers will be happy to help. You can contact the team directly by dropping into your local Student Advice Centre, by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, or by phoning them on: