The Doctoral Loan – new for 2018!
Are you considering studying for a postgraduate research degree? The UK Government has recently introduced a new loan for doctoral researchers to help fund a PhD.
The loans enable you to borrow any amount up to £25,000, and this can be used to pay for your tuition fees or other costs associated with studying, such as accommodation or travel expenses.
The key details
Which courses are eligible?
- The loan is for doctoral degrees that start on or after 1 August 2018.
- The doctoral course must last between three and eight academic years.
- The course can be either full-time or part-time.
- You will not be able to claim for the loan if you will receive Research Council funding (for example, studentships, stipends, scholarships and tuition fee support).
How much can I borrow?
- You can choose to borrow up to £25,000.
- It’s also your choice how you spend the money, though the loan is intended to support the cost of fees, learning resources and/or living expenses.
- The loan is paid directly to you and is not based on your family’s income.
Who can apply?
- To get the loan, you must be living in England and intending to study at a UK University. UK nationals and those with settled status in the UK can apply, so long as they have been living in England for 3 years. EU, EEA or Swiss nationals living in the EU, EEA or Switzerland are also eligible, so long as they are intending to study at a UK University.
- You must also be under the age of 60 on the first day of your course.
When do I repay the loan?
- You are not required to repay any of the loan until you have finished or left your course and your income is over £21,000.
- Once you earn over this amount, the government will automatically take 6% of what you earn over the threshold.
- This will be combined with master’s loan debt, so you will only make one repayment every month.
Will I be charged interest?
- The interest rate on the loan is currently 6.1%.
- Interest will be charged at the Retail Price Index (RPI) plus 3% from the day you receive your first payment until the loan is paid in full.
When can I apply?
- Applications are now open! You need to apply within 9 months of the first day of the last academic year of the course. Further information about the loan and how to apply can be found on the UK Government website.