Postgraduate Loan for Master’s degrees

The availability of postgraduate Master’s support is subject to the regulations being made. This is expected to happen in April. Policy details on support and repayment are subject to change.

From 1 August 2017, if you’re starting a full-time or part-time postgraduate Master’s course (taught or research based) you can apply for a Postgraduate Loan of up to £10,280.

A Postgraduate Loan will be available if you don’t already hold a Master’s degree or higher qualification. If you have a lower level qualification and want to ‘top-up’ to a Master’s degree, you won’t be eligible for a Postgraduate Loan as you can only get a Postgraduate Loan for a full postgraduate Master’s course.

Postgraduate Loans are not based on your household income.

Watch our films to find out about Postgraduate Loans, how to apply and repayment

Postgraduate Loan

Thinking of starting a postgraduate Master’s course this year? From August 2017, you could get help to pay for your course and living costs. Watch our films now to find out what you can get, how to apply and what, when and how you’ll repay.

Personal eligibility

A Postgraduate Loan may be available to you if you’re aged under 60 on the first day of the first academic year of your course, and:

  • you're a UK national or have 'settled status' (that means no restrictions on how long you can stay);
  • you normally live in Wales; and
  • you've been ordinarily resident in the UK and Islands for the three years prior to the first day of the first academic year of your course.

You could also be eligible if you’re:

  • a member of the UK Armed Forces, or a relative of someone in the UK Armed Forces, and studying on a distance learning course outside the UK,
  • a refugee, or a relative of one,
  • under humanitarian protection as a result of a failed application for asylum and living in Wales,
  • granted Discretionary Leave to remain in the UK or a relative of someone granted Discretionary Leave to remain in the UK where no application for asylum has been made,
  • granted leave to enter or remain in the UK or a relative of someone granted leave to enter or remain as a result of a failed asylum application,
  • an EEA or Swiss migrant worker, or a relative of one,
  • he child of a Swiss national, or
  • the child of a Turkish worker.

You may also be eligible if you’re from an EU country and studying in Wales.

If you’re from another part of the UK but you’re currently living in Wales while you study, you won’t be classed as ‘ordinarily resident’ in Wales. You should contact your own funding provider for further information on what postgraduate support will be available.

Course eligibility

Your course must start on or after 1 August 2017, and be a full standalone postgraduate Master’s course such as an MSc, MA, MPhil, MRes, LLM, MLitt, MD, MFA, MED or MBA.

Your course must also:

  • be provided by a university or college in the UK (including the Open University); and
  • lead to a postgraduate Master’s degree.

It can be taught or research-based and studied:

  • full-time, lasting one or two academic years;
  • part-time, lasting two to four academic years - no more than twice the length of the equivalent full-time course; or
  • part-time for up to three years, where no equivalent full-time course exists.

What you can get

The Postgraduate Loan will be paid directly to you as a contribution towards your course and living costs. The maximum available will be £10,280 per course; the amount you get per year depends on the length of your course.

Course length academic years

Maximum Postgraduate Loan available

Year 1

Year 2

Year 3

Year 4















Payments will be made in three instalments for each academic year. For example, if you’re studying a one year full-time course, you will get £10,280 paid to you over three instalments; the first and second instalment would be £3,392.40, and the third instalment would be £3,495.20.

You won’t be able to get Dependants’ Grants such as Adult Dependants’ Grant, Parents’ Learning Allowance and Childcare Grant.

Disabled Students’ Allowances

You may be able to get Disabled Students’ Allowances (DSAs) if you have a disability, including a long-term health condition, mental-health condition or specific learning difficulty. DSAs are grants to help pay the essential extra costs you may have as a direct result of your disability.

Repayment of your Postgraduate Loan

You have to repay any loan you borrow, including the interest charged, but not until you’ve finished or left your course and your income is over the repayment threshold. The earliest you’ll start repaying your Postgraduate Loan is April 2019.

How much you’ll repay

The current repayment thresholds are £21,000 a year, £1,750 a month, or £404 a week. Once your income is over the repayment threshold, you’ll repay 6% of your income above this figure.

If you have an undergraduate loan, you’ll repay this in addition to your Postgraduate Loan. For example, if you have a Postgraduate Loan, and also have an undergraduate loan which you took out after 1998, a total of 15% (6% for your Postgraduate Loan, and 9% for your undergraduate loan) will be deducted from your income, once your income is above the repayment thresholds for your loans.


You’ll be charged interest from the day we make the first payment to you until the loan is repaid in full or cancelled. Interest will be charged at the Retail Price Index (RPI) plus 3%. The current rate until 31st August 2017 is 4.6%.

When to apply

You’ll be able to apply for a Postgraduate Loan from June 2017.


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