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What higher education funding is available in Scotland?

By David Malcolm

Monday 18 March 2013 Higher education

Here’s a guide to the higher education support that’s available from the government if you normally live in Scotland. The funding available depends on the level of your course (undergraduate or postgraduate), where you want to study (in Scotland or elsewhere), and whether you’re studying full- or part-time.

Can I get higher education funding in Scotland?

If you normally live in Scotland, regardless of where you’re studying in the UK, you may be eligible for funding from the Student Awards Agency for Scotland (SAAS) – a Scottish Government agency. To get the funding, you and your course must be eligible for it. For more details, see Can I get higher education funding in the UK?

What funding is available for undergraduates (or equivalent) studying in the UK?

If you’re studying for an undergraduate-level qualification, which includes honours degrees, Higher National Certificate (HNC) and Higher National Diploma (HND), the funding that’s available from SAAS depends on when your course began or will begin, and whether you’re full- or part-time. You can use this funding to study in Scotland, England, Wales, Northern Ireland and some institutions in the Republic of Ireland.

For more details, see:

This information is also relevant to you if you’re studying for some postgraduate qualifications:

  • Professional Graduate Diploma in Education (PGDE)
  • Maths Tripos (Part III) at Cambridge University
  • some postgraduate architecture diplomas (for more details, see architecture courses).

What funding is available for postgraduates studying in the UK?

If you’re studying for a postgraduate-level qualification, which includes most courses that require an undergraduate degree for entry, you can get funding from SAAS and other sources.

For more information, see What funding is available for postgraduates studying in the UK?

What funding is available if I want to study outside the UK?

Most higher education funding from SAAS is for study in the UK or the Republic of Ireland. If you want to study elsewhere, see I want to study outside the UK – what higher education funding can I get?

I’m an international student and I want to study in Scotland – what funding can I get?

If you’re a student from outside the UK and you want to study for a higher education qualification at a university or college in Scotland, you may be able to get funding from SAAS. If not, there’s a range of funding options and help available to you.

For more information, see I’m an international student and I want to study in the UK – what higher education funding can I get?

How do I apply for government funding?

You apply for funding through SAAS. For more information, see How do I apply for higher education funding in Scotland?

Where else can I get funding?

As well as government funding, you may be able to get funding from your academic institution, charities or other sources. To find out more, see Can I get higher education funding from my university or college? and other sources of funding.

This information was updated in March 2013. NUS provides this information in good faith and has taken care to make sure it’s accurate. However, student finance issues can be complicated, and rules change frequently. You should contact the advice centre in your students' union, college or university for support if you’re uncertain or need more help.