Financial support available

The Postgraduate Doctoral Loan will be paid directly to you as a contribution towards your course and living costs. The maximum available for courses starting on and after 1 August 2019 will be £25,700 per course.

Courses that started from 1 August 2018 to 31 July 2019 the maximum available is £25,000 per course.

Your loan payments will be spread out across all the academic years of your course. For example, if your course starts in August 2019 and you’re studying full time over 4 academic years and apply for the maximum loan amount of £25,700, then your payments would be £6,425 in each academic year.

Postgraduate Doctoral Loans are not based on your household income.

The Department for Work and Pensions may take account of the Postgraduate Doctoral Loan when working out any benefits you receive.

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

Maximum yearly amount

The maximum Postgraduate Doctoral Loan you will be entitled to in a year is £10,609 for courses that started between 1 August 2018 to 31 July 2019. For courses starting on or after 1 August 2019 the maximum Doctoral Loan you'll be entitled to is £10,906.

So although you can apply in any year of your course, you may not get the maximum amount if you apply after the first year.

For example, if you began a 3 year doctoral degree in September 2018 but don’t apply for a Postgraduate Doctoral Loan until the second year of your course, the maximum you could get for each remaining year would be £10,609. This means the total you’d receive for the whole course would be £21,218.

Getting paid

You will get the first payment after your course start date, once your university or college confirms that you’ve registered.

Payments will be made in three instalments of 33%, 33% and 34% for each academic year. For example, if you've applied for the full £25,700 and are studying over 4 years, your payments each year would be:

Term 1

Term 2

Term 3




After your application has been approved, you’ll be sent a letter with your payment dates or you can check them in your online account.

Disabled Students’ Allowances

You may be able to get Disabled Students’ Allowances of £20,000 per year if you have a disability, including a long-term health condition, mental-health condition, autism spectrum disorder or specific learning difficulty. Find out more about Disabled Students Allowances for postgraduate students

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