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Adult funding book
Adult funding book
Adult funding book
Adult funding book
Adult funding book
Adult funding book
Adult funding book
Adult funding book
Adult funding book
Adult funding book
Adult funding book
Adult funding book
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Adult funding book

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  • 1. Getting financial support on tuition fees A guide for adult learners
  • 2. 2 Introduction 3 Who is this booklet for? 3 Further Education or Higher Education? 4 Learning at work 5 Further Education (FE) funding 5 Learning at level 2-3 5 Learning at levels 3-4, at age 24+ 5 Learning above level 4 6 Loan repayments 6 Higher Education (HE) funding 7 Tuition fee loans 7 Part-time students 7 Loan repayments 7 Funding for apprenticeships 8 Professional and career development loans 9 Other types of funding 10 Useful contacts 11 Contents
  • 3. 3 Those who wish to improve their career prospects through study while remaining in work often assume there won’t be any financial assistance because they are already employed. This isn’t the case, but unravelling the various funding options is time-consuming and confusing for both employees and employers. This guide is designed to provide clear information on what funding is available on tuition fees only. It does not set out to cover other personal funding areas such as income support or council tax exemption, but you will find some basic information on additional funding at the back of this booklet. Who is this booklet for? • Learners considering Further or Higher Education study while remaining at work, where tuition fees are not being paid by their employer. • Employers who are unable to assist with tuition fees, but who nonetheless wish to encourage and support employees’ development. Please note that the information in this booklet serves as guidance only.We strongly recommend that prospective learners contact both the course provider and any potential funding agency before enrolling, to ensure funding is available in their personal circumstances. Introduction
  • 4. 4 Qualifications can be taken at any age in order to continue or return to education or training, however it can be helpful to understand where these qualifications fit. Further Education (FE) and Higher Education (HE) funding are covered by different funding bodies, so it’s important to understand which category applies to the courses under consideration . Further Education In the UK, Further Education bridges the gap between compulsory education up to age 16 and degree-level courses. It covers a wide variety of qualifications, from entry level up to level 3 (eg literacy, numeracy or basic computer courses, GCSEs, National Vocational Qualifications (NVQs), BTECs, A-levels and Access courses), and usually allows learners to study full or part-time so they can fit their learning around work and other commitments. Further Education is usually undertaken at a further education or community college, although there are also work-based courses available. Higher Education Higher Education offers a diverse range of courses and qualifications, from Higher National Diplomas (HNDs) and foundation degrees to first degrees. Although many courses take place in universities, an increasing number are distance learning or work-based courses where you learn on the job. Further Education or Higher Education? Level 8 Doctorate PhD Level 7 Master’s degree MA, MSc, MPhil Graduate apprenticeships Level 6 University degree BA, BSc Level 5 Foundation degree FdA, FdSc HND Higher apprenticeships Level 4 HNC Level 3 Level 3 extended diploma (national diploma) Level 3 diploma (national diploma) Advanced-level apprenticeships Access courses Level 2 GCSE Grades A-C Level 2 diploma (First diploma) Intermediate -level apprenticeships Level 1 GCSE Grades D-G Level 1 diploma (Foundation diploma) Entry Level 1 Key Stage 3 Level 2 diploma (Foundation) A Level A 2 A 3 Qualification levels table
  • 5. 5 There are a number of ways for learners to get support to develop their skills with colleges, universities or through their own employer. For the learner to be considered for public funding, both the college or training organisations and the specific course must be eligible; the course provider will advise on this. Further Education (FE) funding Learning at level 2-3 Any learner aged 19 or more who has not yet achieved a qualification at level 2 or 3 is eligible for public funding to achieve a qualification at that level. This funding comes from the Skills Funding Agency’s Adult Skills Budget*, which supports classroom and workplace learning.Workplace learning is defined as: • any learning aim mainly delivered within a workplace and in connection with the employed learner’s occupation or their employer’s business, and • any learning in an apprenticeship framework. Learners studying towards a level 2 vocational certificate or diploma, or a level 3 vocational diploma (national diploma), are currently eligible for full funding. Level 3 vocational certificates (national certificates) are publicly funded, but on a co-funded basis only. Learners aged 19 and over, excluding apprentices, are eligible for full funding to take GCSE English and maths if they do not currently have these qualifications at grades A* to C, no matter what other qualifications they already hold. Note that this funding is for a full GCSE course, not for re-sits to obtain an A* to C grade. Learning at levels 3-4, at age 24+ If the learner is 24 or over when they start, and looking to learn at level 3 or 4 or as part of an advanced-level or higher apprenticeship, the provision is not supported by the Adult Skills Budget.They may however be supported by 24+ Advanced Learning Loans. The government is introducing these loans from 1 August 2013, to help people aged 24 or over carry out level 3 or 4 Further Education learning aims or advanced-level or higher-level apprenticeships. Loans can be used to fund the following types of publicly funded education, no matter how the study is carried out: • A programme of A-levels (including AS,A2 and full A-levels). • Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) Access to HE diplomas. • Qualifications and Credit Framework (QCF) certificates at levels 3 and 4. • Qualifications and Credit Framework (QCF) diplomas at l Learning at work Essentials: 24+ Advanced Learning Loans • These are loans rather than grants, and the learner will have to repay them. See page XX for more on repayments. • The Student Loans Company* will be responsible for assessing whether learners are eligible. • The minimum loan is £300. • Learners don’t have to borrow the full cost of their course. • Getting a loan doesn’t depend on household income, and there’s no credit check. • The college or training organisation receives the money directly, once they’ve confirmed that the learner has attended the course for two weeks. >>* For more information on the Skills Funding Agency or the Student Loans Company, please see the ‘useful contacts’ section on page XX.
  • 6. 6 Short courses (sometimes known as units) and awards at level 3 and above are not eligible for funding through a 24+ Advanced Learning Loan. Learners can apply for a maximum of four 24+ Advanced Learning Loans, but: • can only get one loan at a time • can’t apply for another loan to repeat the same level of a course (eg a learner cannot get a loan to fund a level 3 certificate in French when they have previously had a loan to fund a level 3 certificate in Italian). Learning above level 4 For the 2013/14 academic year onwards, 24+ Advanced Learning Loans funding above level 4 will be available only for higher apprenticeships at level 5 and 6. (The various qualification levels are shown on page X.) Loan repayments Repayments on 24+ Advanced Learning Loans are linked to income, and the learner will only start to make these when their income is more than £21,000 a year. If income drops below this level, the learner will stop repaying the loan. If the course finishes before 2016, repayments won’t start until April 2016. Part-time students sometimes start repayments while they’re still studying. If the learner earns more than £21,000, they will start making monthly repayments at nine per cent of earnings above that level. For example, if they earn £25,000 they pay back nine per cent of £4,000 (£360) over the course of the year – this would be £30 per month. For more examples of monthly repayments, see table: Learning at work continued Learner’s annual income Monthly repayments £21,000 and under No repayments £25,000 £30 £30,000 £67 £40,000 £142 £50,000 £217 £60,000 £292
  • 7. 7 Degrees, foundation degrees and higher qualifications are funded through an HE stream, even if you take the qualification at a college of further education. Tuition fee loans If you’re a UK or EU full-time or part-time student, you can apply for a tuition fee loan. The course needs to be recognised for funding and undertaken at a UK institution, and needs to be one of the following: • a first degree, eg BA, BSc or BEd • a foundation degree • a Certificate of Higher Education • a Diploma of Higher Education (DipHE) • a Higher National Certificate (HNC) • a Higher National Diploma (HND) • a Postgraduate Certificate of Education (PGCE) • a top up from an HNC, HND or foundation degree to an honours degree • initial teacher training • further training of youth and community workers Part-time students Part-time students need to study their courses at a rate of at least 25% of an equivalent full-time course in each academic year.This is known as ‘course intensity’. Learners should check course intensity with their university or college. Loan repayments Repayments on tuition fee loans are linked to income, and the learner will only start to make these when their income is more than £21,000 a year. If income drops below this level, the learner will stop repaying the loan. Higher Education (HE) funding For more information on the Student Loans Company, please see the ‘useful contacts’ section on page XX. Essentials: tuition fee loans • These are loans rather than grants, and the learner will have to repay them. See page XX for more on repayments. • The Student Loans Company* will be responsible for assessing whether learners are eligible. • There is no age limit. • The college or training organisation receives the money directly. >> Full-time student Tuition fee loan Full-time Up to £9,000 Full-time at a private university or college £30 Part-time student Tuition fee loan Part-time Up to £6,750 Part-time at a private university or college Up to £4,500
  • 8. (HE) funding continued If the course finishes before 2016, repayments won’t start until April 2016. Part-time students sometimes start repayments while they’re still studying. If the learner earns more than £21,000, they will start making monthly repayments at nine per cent of earnings above that level. For example, if they earn £25,000 they pay back nine per cent of £4,000 (£360) over the course of the year – this would be £30 per month. For more examples of monthly repayments, see below: Funding for apprenticeships Funding for apprenticeships is best discussed with the employer and prospective learning provider, but funding comes from the National Apprenticeship Service* – with the size of the contribution dependent on the sector and the age of the candidate. If the apprentice is: • aged 16–18, 100 per cent of the cost of the training is funded • aged 19-24, up to 50 per cent is funded • aged 25 or over, any contribution will depend on the sector and area in which the learner operates. The money is usually paid directly to the organisation that provides and supports the apprenticeship; in most cases this will be a learning provider. 24+ Advanced Learning Loans The government is introducing these loans from 1 August 2013, to help people aged 24 or over carry out level 3 or 4 further education learning aims or advanced-level or higher-level apprenticeships. However, for the 2013/14 academic year onwards funding above level 4 will be available only for higher apprenticeships at level 5 and 6. (You can see the various qualification levels on page X.) If higher apprenticeships include qualifications that are eligible for HE student support, such as foundation degrees, the learner will be able to make a second (and separate) loan application for that HE course, in addition to their apprenticeship loan. * For more information on the National Apprenticeship Service, please see the ‘useful contacts’ section on page XX. Learner’s annual income Monthly repayments £21,000 and under No repayments £25,000 £30 £30,000 £67 £40,000 £142 £50,000 £217 £60,000 £292 8
  • 9. 9 Professional and career development loans These are bank loans set at a competitive interest rate, which learners aged 18 years or over can use to help pay for learning that leads to work or that will improve their employability. The loans can be used to support any full-time, part-time or distance learning courses for up to two years, as long as the course leads to a trade, occupation or profession. Like any loan, learners must repay the money they borrow, but the Skills Funding Agency* will pay the interest on the loan while the learner is in learning and for up to one month afterwards.The learner then repays the loan to the bank over an agreed period at a fixed rate of interest. The loans are administered by banks; you pay interest on them, normally at a rate equivalent to 5-6 per cent APR.They are available for between £300 and £10,000, and you can get them from a range of high street banks. Note: these are conventional unsecured debts, and you should talk to your bank for more information.
  • 10. 10 This guide is focused on support for paying tuition fees, but learners have access to a variety of other funding sources depending on their circumstances: Please note this is a general guide for learners starting their studies from 1 September 2013 and is by no means a definitive list of the sources of funding available. It is only accurate at the time of going to press. For further details please contact the relevant organisations mentioned in this publication. Other types of funding Type of funding Further Education Higher Education Part-time Full-time Part-time Full-time Tuition Fee Support • • • • Adults Dependent Grant • Child Benefit • • • • Childcare Support • • • Child Tax Credit • • • • Council Tax Exemption / Reduction • • • • Disabled Student Allowance • • Employer Support Allowance • • • • Help with health costs • • • • Housing Benefit • • • • Income Support • • • NHS Bursaries • • Parents’ Learning Allowance • Access to Learning Fund • • Professional and Career Development Loan • • • • Working Tax Credit • • • • * For more information on the Skills Funding Agency, please see the ‘useful contacts’ section on page XX.
  • 11. 11 For more about funding, the following links and organisations may prove useful. Education levels and types of study Ofqual Comparing qualifications levels www.ofqual.gov.uk/help-and-advice/comparing- qualifications/ Learning at work The Campaign for Learning National Learning atWork Day www.learningatworkday.com The National Careers Service http://nationalcareersservice.direct.gov.uk The Lifelong LearningAccount http://direct.gov.uk/lifelonglearningaccount Skills for Life www.move-on.org.uk Student Loans Company http://www.slc.co.uk/services.aspx Skills FundingAgency http://skillsfundingagency.bis.gov.uk/ NationalApprenticeship Service www.apprenticeships.org.uk Government education and learning Government information on help if you're at school, planning to go on to further or higher education, looking for training or interested in a student or career development loan. www.gov.uk/further-education-courses/financial- help www.gov.uk/browse/education/student-finance Telephone: 0845 300 50 90 Textphone: 0845 604 44 34 Monday to Friday, 8am-8pm Saturday and Sunday, 9am-5.30pm Useful contacts
  • 12. To learn more about our flexible, practical CPD proposition, or to arrange a meeting and find out what we can offer you, contact Jo Stark at Solent Enterprise Centre. Tel: 02380 319869 Mobile: 07714 296170 Email: jo.stark@solent.ac.uk

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