What is a Postgraduate Masters Loan - Crunch - Image of students
Picture of crunch software on mobile

Professional Bio Templates & Examples

Create a compelling professional narrative for a proper, attention-grabbing introduction.
Website bios
Speaker intros
Professional Profile

A Postgraduate Master’s Loan can help you with course fees and living costs while you study a postgraduate master’s course.

The funding for postgraduate loans differs depending on where you normally live. There are separate rules for Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland. Moving somewhere to study does not count as normally living there.

When it comes to repaying your Postgraduate Master’s Loan the rules are the same as for any other student loans you may have. Interest will be charged from the day you get the first payment.

You can also get extra support if you have a disability.

You will not be eligible for an Adult Dependants’ Grant, a Childcare Grant or Parents’ Learning Allowance from Student Finance if you’re studying a master’s course.

Rules for England and Wales

How much can I borrow?

The loan will be paid directly to you if you are studying over two, three, or four academic years. You can use it for your course fees and living costs.

The amount you’ll get depends on when you started your course. It is not based on you or your family’s income.

Academic year commencement date Loan amount (up to) Loan allocation
Academic year starts on or after 1st August 2020 £11,222 Payments divided equally across your course and paid in three installments per academic year
Academic year starts on or after 1st August 2019 £10,906 Payments divided equally across your course and paid in three installments per academic year
Academic year starts on or after 1st August 2018 £10,609 Total for the whole course divided equally over academic years*NB Wales is currently offering up to £13,000
2017 – 2018 academic year £10,280
2016 – 2017 academic year £10,000 Half in first year and remainder in 2nd year

When and how will I be paid?

You’ll get the first payment after your course start date, and after your university or college confirms that you’ve registered. If you change university or college during your course, your new university or college has to confirm the change with Student Finance England before you receive any more payments.

The loan will be paid in instalments of 33%, 33% and 34% each year. 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.

Check out our article on how to pay back a student loan when self-employed if you need further help in this area.

How do I know if I’m eligible?

Whether you qualify depends on:

  • your course
  • your age (must be less than 60 years of age on the first day of the first academic year)
  • your nationality or residency status.

You won’t be eligible for a Postgraduate Master’s Loan if:

  • you’re already receiving payments from student finance for another course that you’re studying
  • you received a Postgraduate Master’s Loan before - unless you left your course due to illness, bereavement or another serious personal reason
  • you already have a master’s degree, or a qualification that’s equivalent or higher
  • you’re behind in repayments for any previous loans from the Student Loans Company
  • you're eligible for NHS or Social work (unless limited to Placement Travel Allowance) bursary.

You’ll still be eligible if you have a Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) or a postgraduate diploma or certificate.

You will not get extra money if you repeat a year of your course.

Repayment

Postgraduate Loan repayment commences in April after the programme is completed (or following withdrawal, where this applies). Students who are studying a programme that is three or four academic years in duration will enter repayment in April following the second academic year and so will still be on a programme and making repayments.

Postgraduate loans will be repaid using a percentage (currently 6%) of an annual income threshold which is £21,000 per annum (£1,750 per month or £404 per week). This means that 6% of earnings over £21,000 will be taken as a repayment directly by your employer or through your self-assessment via HMRC if you are self-employed. Where repayments are made from overseas, the income threshold applied may be different and payments will need to be made directly to the Student Loan Company.

Repayment of a postgraduate loan will be made concurrently with any other student loan repayments due, under the arrangements in place for the repayments of that loan.

The balance of any outstanding postgraduate loan under this scheme can be written off on the 30th anniversary of the date the loan became due for repayment, if you become permanently unfit for work, there are no outstanding arrears, or on death.

Rules for Scotland and Northern Ireland

Eligible Scottish domiciled students are entitled to loans for fees and living costs in Scotland for certain courses (diploma or masters, not PhD which can be funded by Research Councils). There is also support for studies in the UK for courses not available in Scotland.

Students with both undergraduate and postgraduate loans will have them merged and subject to the same interest rate.

Dates Loan amount Purpose
2020 - 2021 academic year Up to £10,000 (£5,500 for fees & £4,500 living cost) Student loans for full-time, part-time and distance learning Masters and PGDip courses.*NB Northern Ireland only offers the £5,500 for fees
2017 – 2018 academic year Up to £10,000 (£5,500 for fees & £4,500 living cost) Taught postgraduate up to Masters in any Scottish higher education institute*NB Northern Ireland only offers the £5,500 for fees
2016 – 2017 academic year Up to £7,900 (£3,400 for fees & £4,500 living cost) Limited number of courses up to Postgraduate Diploma

Repayment will begin on the 6th April after leaving a course.

If you live in Scotland and Northern Ireland, from April 2021 the repayment threshold is £18,330 and the payback rate is 9%.

All of this is summarised in the table below:

  • After 35 years for Scottish residents and 25 years for Northern Ireland residents
  • On death
  • Permanently disabled and unfit to work.
guide cover for "8 great ways accountancy can help your ecommerce business"

Unlock your free ecommerce business guide!

Expert Insights
Actionable Tips
Strategic Advice

To receive our guide on valuable insights into the world of expenses for limited companies please submit your details below.

Please enjoy our guide on 8 Ways Great Accountancy Helps ecommerce Businesses Succeed.

Click below to download our PDF guide.
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

By submitting you are agreeing to be contacted by Crunch.

Speak to an accounting expert

If you're unsure what level of support you need, our friendly team are on hand to help you pick the right package for you.
Self Assessment tax returns done for you, from just £200 £130+VAT
Take the stress out of Sole Trader Accounting, for just 1%+VAT of your money earned. No monthly subscriptions! With CrunchONE
Get 25% Off Crunch Pro and Premium for the first 3 months!
Share this post
Ross Bramble
Content Executive
Updated on
April 1, 2021

Knowledge Hubs

Take control of your accounts, today

Crunch’s effective software package includes being able to talk to an expert client manager and a Chartered Certified Accountant. You can count on Crunch to make you productive and profitable.
Picture of crunch software on mobile

Professional Bio Templates & Examples

Create a compelling professional narrative for a proper, attention-grabbing introduction.
Website bios
Speaker intros
Professional Profile

Unlock Your Free Limited Company Expense Guide!

Expert Insights
Actionable Tips
Strategic Advice

Save your seat! Live e-commerce webinar

Register and soak in the wisdom from top industry leader! June 27, 2024 1:30 PM
Dive into e-commerce basics
Expert industry insights
Practical tips and savvy tricks
Pro Tip
Looking for a dedicated accountant?

Our Enterprise packages offer tailored support for you and your business. You can focus on your business, we'll crunch the numbers.

Pro Tip
Boost your business finances with our Ltd Company packages!

Award-winning software with support from expert accountants

Pro Tip
Take the stress out of Sole Trader Accounting

Just 1%+VAT of your money earned. No monthly subscriptions! With CrunchONE

Pro Tip
Get 50% off your Self Assessment

Get your tax return sorted by experts for only £130+VAT!

Pro Tip
Using cloud-based accountancy software to manage your finances gives any small business a big advantage!

At Crunch we provide affordable cutting-edge, easy-to-use software with real human support from expert chartered accountants. That’s probably why 81% of our clients would recommend Crunch.

Pro Tip
Did you know - you have access to a Chartered Certified accountant for free on our paid subscriptions?

Book a call with our one accountants and get your questions answered. Just £25.50 +VAT for Crunch Free users.

Pro Tip
Get 35% off your Tax Return!

Crunch’s Self Assessment service provides an expert accountant to complete, check, and file your Self Assessment for you for just £130 +VAT.

Pro Tip
Did you know - We have a free plan that is great for sole traders and limited companies?

Why not see for yourself? It’s simple and easy to use and 100% free.