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Funding for Scottish Students

Scottish students studying at postgraduate level at UWS may be entitled to various funds and support towards tuition fees and living costs.

PGDE students are funded through the undergraduate funding system. Further information can be found in the undergraduate fees and funding section. If you have received SAAS funding previously to undertake an undergraduate course, you will generally still be able to receive this to undertake the PGDE, as long as you have not already received funding to undertake a postgraduate course.

Postgraduate Social Work courses fall under the remit of the Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) and you can find more information about this in the section below.

Student Awards Agency Scotland (SAAS)


Funding for students from Scotland is administered by an agency of the Scottish Government known as SAAS (Student Awards Agency Scotland). SAAS operate an online application process and their website has a lot of really useful information about your entitlement and how you apply for it. Applications open in April and we recommend applying early to ensure your funding is ready for you starting your course.

SAAS will provide funding for taught postgraduate studies up to Masters level as long as you have not already used UK or EU funds to study at this level. ‘Taught’ refers to courses with an element of teaching, so it is possible to get this funding for distance learning courses where there is a taught element.

Full-time students

Student funding packages are made up of a tuition fee loan and living costs loan. The tuition fee loan is worth up to £5,500 and the living cost loan is worth £4,500 and is not income-assessed.

The University will normally charge £5,500 for a postgraduate course, which includes the fee for the Masters element. This will be paid directly to the University but you are responsible for applying. Should your course fee be higher than this, you will remain responsible for meeting the additional costs.

The living costs loan is not income-assessed so you do not need to send SAAS any details of your household income. While you will be eligible for £4,500, you can elect to take out less of a student loan if you do not need your full entitlement.

Part-time students

If you are a part-time student undertaking an eligible course over two years can apply for a tuition fee loan of up to £2,750 per year. You should apply for this in each year study and are not eligible for any living cost support.

Remember that your support will be in the form of loans, which need to be paid back. Find out how the student loan works, including any interest rates and repayment terms, by visiting the Student Loan Company website.

Scottish Social Services Council Bursary

Postgraduate Bursaries are available for nominated and eligible students studying the MSc Social Work at UWS. This is administered through the Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC). Funding is limited and subject to a quota. Students must be nominated by the University, who will have a set number of funded places. Nominations are at our discretion.

The bursary is made up of:

  • Tuition fees, which are paid directly to the University on your behalf. Please be aware that the maximum award available may not cover your tuition in full. You will be responsible for meeting the cost of any shortfall.
  • Means tested maintenance grant and additional allowances depending on circumstances. Your personal situation and household income is used to determine this support. If you are under 25, this will usually be based on your parent’s income. Additional allowances may be available for parents in the form of a single parent allowance, dependents allowance and childcare allowance.
  • Placement Travel Expenses to help with any additional costs associated with the practice placement.

Please see the documents below for more information:

There is no guarantee that a University will nominate a student for a Bursary and they may have more students than quota places. If you have studied a Postgraduate course previously this may also affect your eligibility. In these circumstances you cannot apply to SAAS for funding, but may find useful information in the sections below.

For further information, please contact the SSSC.

Alternative Sources of Funding

There are lots of alternative sources of funding, like charities and trusts, that can help finance your studies. These can include grants that can pay tuition fees, living cost support and funding for research expenses so this can be a good avenue to explore whether you have been unable to get funding through the above sources, or a simply looking to top this up.

When searching for additional financial support, it is important to understand that this can take up a lot of time. While there is no guarantee that you will find a source of funds for you, you definitely won’t find anything if you don’t try.

This type of funding can vary from small amounts, such as £200, to larger amounts that might cover your full tuition fee for a year. Most students who achieve success with these types of funds do so because they continually research and apply to everything they can. Numerous grants of £200 can really add up.

It’s also important to remember that most of these funds are competitive, similar to applying for a job. Many people might apply, but there may be only one award available. As such, it is important that you spend time on any application. Carefully follow any guidance notes and make sure your application will stand out in a crowd.

The best place to start exploring this avenue is through our Alternative Trusts and Scholarships page. Click on the link below and you will find a lot of resources to help get you started. Just remember, we can’t possibly include every fund on our page, so don’t limit yourself to this page alone.

MOD's Enhanced Learning Credits Scheme (ELC)

If you are a member of the Armed Forces, you may be eligible to apply for financial support for studies through the MODs Enhanced Learning Credits Scheme. Many of the courses available at UWS are registered as part of this scheme, which could provide some financial support towards the cost of tuition, should you not be eligible for SAAS, who in most cases can cover the full amount.

Find our more about the scheme

Other sources of funding

When you become a student you can become eligible for childcare and discretionary funds, trust funds and scholarships. You may also find that your entitlement to benefits can change, so use the following links to ensure you receive the financial support you are eligible for.

Managing your money

Once you have a better understanding of the funding you can receive, it’s important to start thinking about what you need to spend it on and how far it will stretch. Visit our Money and Debt Advice section for advice on budgeting, and making your money go further.

Last updated: 01/05/2018