Financial support available to new full-time undergraduate students in 2012/13
Support from Student Finance England/Wales/Northern Ireland & SAAS
Updated 12th July 2011
The Office for Fair Access (OFFA) has approved the University's Access Agreement and the University can confirm that the tuition fee for new full-time UK and EU undergraduates beginning their degrees in the academic year 2012/13 will be £9,000. The same tuition fee will be charged across all undergraduate programmes. The new tuition fee level will be introduced for first years from 2012 onwards; those already at the university who are continuing on the same course in 2012/13 will not incur the new charges. The fee change does not affect international students who pay the overseas tuition fee rate. For more details on the proposed student tuition fee increases, please read the University's Undergraduate Fees 2012/13 page and the BIS Student Finance page.
The application process for funding for 2012/13 entry has not yet begun. Later this year or in early 2012, students can visit www.direct.gov.uk/studentfinance and complete the 'Application for student finance' (PN1) paper form to apply for their statutory support.
Support towards tuition fees and living costs
Full-time UK undergraduate students who have not studied a course of higher education before will be able to apply for a tuition fee loan to cover the cost of their tuition fees. Students can apply for this in late 2011 or early 2012 and do not need to wait until they have been formally offered a place on an undergraduate programme. EU students from outside the UK can also apply for a tuition loan if they meet certain conditions. For more information, please visit www.direct.gov.uk/studentfinance.
New UK students will also have access to some maintenance support to help with the cost of living. A maintenance loan of up to £5,500 will be available for students who live away from home and study outside of London. A loan of up to £4,375 will be available for students who live with their parents. Repayments will be made in the same way as the tuition fee loans are repaid, when graduates are earning over £21,000 a year.
In 2012/13 new UK students with a household income of under £25,000 will receive the maximum maintenance grant of £3,250. If their household income is between £25,000 and £42,600, students can expect to receive a partial living cost grant depending on family income. These grants are intended to help towards living costs such as accommodation, food, travel and course materials and they do not have to be paid back. Students will need to apply for the maintenance loan and grant at the same time as applying for the tuition fee loan, either online at www.direct.gov.uk/studentfinance or by completing the PN1 paper form.
Eligible students should be able to apply for living cost loans and grants for each year they are studying on their undergraduate programme. Please note that students are required to make a separate application to Student Finance England for the support listed above for each academic year of their course.
Additional grants (Support for dependants)
In 2012/13, depending on their circumstances, certain students can apply for additional grants (e.g. the Parents' Learning Allowance, the Childcare Grant or the Adult Dependants' Grant). The application process has still yet to be confirmed, but in 2011/12, students applied by completing the relevant sections of the 'Application for student finance' (PN1) form. They also needed to complete supplementary application forms such as the 'Childcare Grant Application Form' (CCG1) and supply supporting documentation.
Disabled Student's Allowance (Support towards extra course costs)
In 2012/13, students who incur extra course costs because they have a disability, ongoing health condition, mental health condition or specific learning difficulty (like dyslexia) can apply for help towards these costs from a Disabled Student's Allowance (DSA). The application process has still yet to be confirmed, but in 2011/12, these students needed to complete a 'Disabled Students' Allowances Application Form' (DSA1) and provide supporting documentation.
There will be loans, for the first time, for part-time students studying for at least 25% of the full-time equivalent. The tuition loan replaces the previous means-tested fee grant and study grant. It is not means-tested. Part-time students will not be entitled to a loan or grant to cover living costs.
Applying for your support
For more information visit www.direct.gov.uk/studentfinance
Please note that loan and grant arrangements may differ if you are normally resident in Scotland, Northern Ireland or Wales. Please visit www.direct.gov.uk/en/EducationAndLearning for more information.
Support from the University of Reading
See Money matters, visit the Student Financial Support team in the Carrington Building or call 0118 378 7430 for information about the support available from the University of Reading:
University of Reading Access Bursary
In 2011/12 enrolled, eligible students whose household income fell below certain thresholds could apply for the Access Bursary. For continuing students, this support will still be available. However, Access Bursaries will not be available to new starters in 2012/13. Please see below for details of alternative funding arrangements - The National Scholarship Programme.
Access to Learning Fund
Under current funding systems in 2011/12, students who get into financial difficulty or experience unexpected financial emergencies can apply for support from the Access to Learning Fund. Awards are made on a needs basis and subject to a means test. Funds provided are usually non-repayable and designed to help students with living costs. We hope to be able to offer similar support in 2012/13.
Donor Study and Travel Fund
In 2011/12, students who were in financial hardship could apply for help towards the cost of travel for field trips, study visits or conference attendance that was directly related to their studies. They completed an application form and provided supporting documentation including a written supporting statement from their tutor or supervisor. We are awaiting confirmation as to whether this will be available in 2012/13.
The National Scholarship Scheme
The Government has announced it is introducing a National Scholarship Scheme, with universities that charge more than £6,000 for a degree programme providing matched funding to support students from less affluent backgrounds. For more information about this Government scheme and the financial support available, please visis www.reading.ac.uk/Study/study-ug-fees2012.aspx#fees
More help and advice is available from the Money Doctors in the Students' Union (RUSU)