Student Finance

Bursaries and Scholarships: The Lowdown

Uni Compare  · Nov 30th 2021

Bursaries and scholarships, the amount that you are entitled to depends on your household income.


Studying a degree is expensive, but fortunately a lot of the cost you can pay back later over a long period of time. During your studies you are also able to get a little bit of extra help in the form of bursaries and scholarships, the amount that you are entitled to depends on your household income. Bursaries and scholarships are usually the same thing under different names.

Bursaries and Scholarships: The Lowdown

Bursary and scholarships

A bursary is money paid to you that you don’t have to pay back. It is a type of grant, giving you the extra funds to enable you to study at university or college. There are lots of different types of bursaries, and you can get them from different departments. The main bursary will be from your institution, and it is based on your household income.

This is where your university looks at your information from the details you have given to Student Finance of what money comes into your household or what your parent’s earn and then decide if you need extra help. If you do, it will be paid to you – sometimes at the beginning of each term close to when you receive your student finance payments, or in one single payment.

As for scholarships, these are financial incentives to allow students to afford university. Some scholarships are obtained by competition, and this may mean a place or spot on a course at university.

The university will tell you if there are a limited number of spaces on the course, or if you are able to get money off of tuition fees if you attend an interview, and/or go through a testing process. They will inform you directly whether you have successfully received the scholarship.

University Bursaries and Scholarships: The Lowdown

Your university

Your university cares about you and they care about how you can manage your time and your money effectively.

There isn’t a university around today that will not have a bursary or a scholarship for students in some way, even online universities like the Open University have a bursary fund! If you find yourself struggling for money or worrying about finance, speak to your university’s finance department and see what they have to offer you.

Third parties

Third parties are generally companies or businesses that have a vested interest in your wellbeing and your progression.

For instance, an accounting firm may have had you work in their office as part of a work experience deal and want you to work in the business when you have finished university. From there, they may set some conditions for you regarding a scholarship or sponsorship for you to study an Accounting course at university.

From there, you will have certain academic criteria that you will need to meet and you will likely be required to work at the firm after you have graduated from university.

There are other third party solutions as well, many companies have been known to speak to candidates beforehand and offer them a scholarship on the proviso that they work for their company upon graduation.

Local Authority Care

If you are leaving local authority care you can ask for a bursary of up to £2,000. This can come from your local authority or the university or college you will be attending. You will need to speak to both to see where it will be coming from, and how to apply.

Local Authority Care is also dependent on your circumstances as well as your financial income, therefore, not everyone will be able to apply for Local Authority Care.

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