UK PhD Loans Explained

You can now apply for a UK PhD loan of up to £25,700. This quick video is going to explain what you can get, eligibility, repayments and the application process. How much can you actually borrow? Well, the maximum amount you can get with a PhD loan is £25,700. You can request less if you like. Whatever you ask for is going to get paid to you, directly to your bank account, in equal instalments during your PhD. You then use the money to pay for university fees, living costs and so on. None of it is means tested or based on your household income, but it may not cover the full cost of a PhD on its own. However, you can combine a PhD loan with some other funding. UK students can apply for a PhD loan if you are ordinarily resident in England or in Wales. What that probably means is that England or Wales are the part of the UK you lived in before you went to university. It probably also means if you have had a previous student loan you got it from England or from Wales… from Student Finance England or Student Finance Wales. EU students are also eligible for PhD loans provided you are coming to study in England or Wales or you are already ordinarily resident in England or Wales. The only other criteria are that you can’t already have a PhD or equivalent and you must be aged 59 or younger at the beginning of the first academic year of your PhD. Your PhD itself can be any kind of doctorate so, a PhD, a DPhil, a DBA, a Professional Doctorate, it doesn’t matter, provided it’s a PhD you are researching at a UK university and it’s going to last between three and eight years. Repayments for PhD loans actually work very similarly to repayments for other student loans. They’re income-contingent, which means you’ll only repay when you are earning over a certain amount per year. For a PhD loan that’s 6% of income over £21,000 per year. If you have a Masters loan, your repayments are combined, so you only ever make one repayment for postgraduate Masters and PhD loans. If you also have an undergraduate loan, that repayment is separate. So once you are earning over both thresholds you’ll make two repayments per month. You can apply for a PhD loan now via Student Finance England or Student Finance Wales. You don’t actually have to be accepted for a PhD before you apply and you can apply later in your course. Thanks for watching, for more information you can check out the full guide and FAQs at or you can sign up to our newsletter for regular updates and funding advice.

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