Whether an EU student can get student finance depends on their:
- personal circumstances,
- course, and
- university or college.
Nationality and residency
EU students will be able to get student finance if all of the following apply:
- they’re an EU national or the family member of an EU national,
- they’ve lived in the EEA or Switzerland for at least three years before the first day of the first academic year of their course, and
- they’re studying a course that qualifies for student finance.
If they’re unable to be in the UK on the first day of the first academic year of their course, they’ll be considered as ‘temporarily absent’. They’ll still be eligible for student finance so long as they meet all other eligibility criteria.
This exception has only been put in place due to the restrictions caused by COVID-19, students should travel to the UK to attend their course once it is safe to do so.
Students can usually only get student finance for their first higher-education qualification. If they’ve already studied a higher-education course in the UK, they might not get help for a second course.
As a general rule, a Tuition Fee Loan is available for the full length of their course, plus one extra year if needed, for example, if:
- they change their course, or
- they leave their course but start another.
The number of years for which they can get student finance is usually calculated as:
Length of current course + one year – years of previous study
If they haven’t got enough years of funding left to cover their course, they’ll have to cover some of the cost themselves. They’ll usually still be able to get a Maintenance Loan in any self-funded years of study.
They might be able to get an extra year of tuition fee support if they need to repeat a year due to compelling personal reasons, such as bereavement or illness.
They would need to provide evidence of this. Depending on their circumstances, this could include:
- medical evidence from their GP
- evidence from social services
- evidence from their university or college
The course they plan to study must be in Wales and one of the following:
- first degree, for example a BA, BSc or BEd
- Foundation Degree
- Certificate of Higher Education
- Higher National Certificate (HNC)
- Higher National Diploma (HND)
- Diploma of Higher Education (DipHE)
- Postgraduate Certificate of Education (PGCE)
- Integrated Master’s
- Initial Teacher Education (ITE)
If they’re not sure whether their course qualifies for student finance, they should check with their university or college.
The university or college must be in Wales and either:
- publicly funded (paid for by the government), or
- privately funded but running individual courses that are approved for funding by the Welsh Government.
EU students can get student finance to cover the full cost of their tuition fees.
EU students might be able to get help with their living costs if any of the following apply:
- they normally live in Wales and didn’t move there solely for the purposes of education, and they’ve been living in the UK for at least three years before the start of their course,
- they’re an EEA or Swiss migrant worker or the family member of one,
- they’re the child of a Swiss national, or
- they’re the child of a Turkish worker.
Find out more about what they could get
How to apply
EU students should fill in a paper form and send it to us at the following address:
Student Finance Services
Student Loans Company
PO Box 89
The application forms will be available to download at www.studentfinancewales.co.uk/eu when applications launch in spring.
When they apply, they’ll be asked to send us proof of their identity, usually their passport or National Identity card.
The evidence they send can be certified copies or original documents. A certified copy is a photocopy of an original document which has been stamped, signed and dated to confirm it’s a true copy of the original by a person of good standing in the community.
They should download and complete a Certifier Checklist form at www.studentfinancewales.co.uk/eu and return it to us with any certified copies they send.
Changing their details
If any of their details change after they’ve applied for student finance, they should download an EUCO1 form at www.studentfinancewales.co.uk/eu and send it to us.
Find out more about change of circumstances