Postgraduate students

COVID-19 update

If you’re having to study online from home in 2020 to 2021 rather than attending your course on campus at your university or college, you’ll still be entitled to a student finance. Your student finance will be paid as normal, as if you were studying on site at your university or college.

If you’re unable to be in the UK on the first day of the first academic year of your course, you’ll be considered as ‘temporarily absent’. You’ll still be eligible for student finance so long as you meet all other eligibility criteria.

This exception has only been put in place due to the restrictions caused by COVID-19, you should travel to the UK to attend your course once it is safe to do so.

EU students starting courses in 2021/22

If you’re an EU student starting a course on or after 1 August 2021, you must have settled or pre-settled status in the UK under the EU Settlement Scheme to get student finance. This does not apply to students who are Irish citizens.

The application deadline for the EU Settlement Scheme is 30 June 2021, but you must have started living in the UK by 31 December 2020.

It’s important that you’re aware of this requirement before applying for student finance, otherwise you will not be eligible for funding from us

You should visit the EU Settlement Scheme information guide on GOV.uk for more information on how to apply.

What type of student are you?

Where you're from and where you live also helps determine what kinds of funding you can get. Read both the options and decide which one applies to you.

  • Northern Ireland student

    Northern Ireland students or 'NI students' are not just students from Northern Ireland. Your nationality is important but is not the only consideration. You're an NI student if you're any of the following:

    • a UK or ROI national who has been living in Northern Ireland for 3 years before the start date of your course
    • an EU national who has been living in Northern Ireland for 3 years before the start date of your course
    • an eligible exception residency type such as a refugee, stateless person or humanitarian protection

    If you're not able to identify as a Northern Ireland student you may still be eligible for funding as a European Union student.

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  • European Union student (including ROI)

    EU students are from the European Union, including the Republic of Ireland (ROI), European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland and all of the following:

    • not able to identify as a Northern Ireland student
    • lived in the EU including the Republic of Ireland, EEA or Switzerland for at least 3 years before the start date of your course
    • will live in Northern Ireland on or before the first day of the first term of your course.

    If you're not able to identify as either a Northern Ireland student or European Union student you may not be eligible for funding from Student Finance NI. Your university or college may be able to tell you about possible alternative sources of funding.

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