Back to advice

Funding for further education overview

By David Malcolm

Friday 12 April 2013 Further education

Here you can find information about the support you’re entitled to for further education across the UK, including information on bursary funding for students aged between 16 and 19, and grants and loans for students aged 19 and older. You can also find news about the government’s latest proposals for changing the funding that students are entitled to.

What is further education?

Further education (FE) covers courses and qualifications that go beyond what you achieve in compulsory school education, but that aren’t at degree level (higher education). Typically, further education includes A Levels, AS Levels, Scottish highers and vocational qualifications, generally up to the standard of GCE A-level or NVQ level 3 or the Scottish equivalent, as well as apprenticeships.

Further education is for people over compulsory school age (currently 16 in the UK), and usually takes place at a school, college, sixth-form college, further education college or work-based learning provider.

People of all ages over 16 years old undertake full- or part-time further education, which can include qualifications also available at the level of compulsory schooling.

If this doesn’t sound like your course, our information on higher education may be more relevant to you. See Funding for higher education overview.

How do I find the right support for me?

The financial support that’s available for students in further education varies a lot, depending on your nationality or residency status, and your age.

Use the links below to find the right information for you.

Funding information

Can I get further education funding in the UK?

What further education funding is available in England?

What further education funding is available in Wales?

What further education funding is available in Northern Ireland?

What further education funding is available in Scotland?

Can I get funding to study for further education while I work?

Can I get funding to study for a City & Guilds qualification?

Can I get funding from the government to study for further education to help me find work?

I’m a student in further education – where can I get help if I’m in financial difficulty?

I’m a student and I pay for childcare – what extra further education funding can I get?

I’m a disabled student – what extra further education funding can I get?

This information was updated in June 2019. 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.