Access and participation bursary
We offer targeted bursaries to home undergraduate students from certain backgrounds to support your studies. This is offered as part of our Access and Participation Plan, which is our strategy for ensuring students have equal opportunities to access and succeed in higher education.
The Student Loans Company administers the bursary on our behalf, but unlike your student loan, you will not have to repay it.
How to apply for a bursary
Students are assessed for the bursary based on your student finance application, submitted through the gov.uk website or as a paper form in the spring before starting your course. There is no need to apply for the bursary separately.
When applying for student finance, you need to agree to your household income being assessed by the Student Loans Company (referred to as 'consent to means-testing'), and provide the evidence the Student Loans Company require for this assessment. To be awarded a bursary, you also need to consent for the Student Loans Company to share this information with us. If you are a care leaver, you need to share this with the Student Loans Company on your application.
If you have already applied for student finance and are concerned you did not consent to means-testing at the time, it is possible to change your application through your online account.
Bursary criteria and amount
The exact bursary applicable to you will depend on the Access and Participation Plan that's in place at the time when you started your degree.
Students with an annual household income below £25,000 and who are from an area where young people are least likely to enter higher education (POLAR4 Quintile 1)
Students with an annual household income below £25,000 and who are from one of the most deprived areas (IMD Quintile 1).
Students with an annual household income below £25,000.
For home undergraduate students starting degrees in 2023/24, we offer a £1500 cash bursary each year of your course to students from the following backgrounds:
The annual £1500 award is paid in monthly instalments during term-time, October to May. If awarded a bursary, you will receive a letter outlining the timing and amount of these instalments. As a rough guide, see the timing of bursary instalments in the 2022/23 academic year below.
Access and Participation Bursary: timing of payments (2022/23)
|3rd October 2022
|7th November 2022
|5th December 2022
|2nd January 2023
|6th February 2023
|6th March 2023
|3rd April 2023
|1st May 2023
You will be assessed for the bursary each year when you apply for student finance. Having received a bursary one year does not guarantee you will receive it again, as your circumstances may change.
Please note that bursary awards for 2023/24 entrants are based on both household income and postcode, so having a Quintile 1 area postcode does not automatically mean that you will receive a bursary.
For home undergraduate students who started degrees in 2020/21, 2021/22 or 2022/23, we offer a £1500 cash bursary for each year of your course to students from the following backgrounds:
The annual £1500 award is paid in instalments during term-time. If awarded a bursary, you will receive a letter outlining the timing and amount of these instalments. As a guide, you can view a general indication of the timing and amount of bursary instalments for the 2022/23 academic year.
You can see whether you live in a POLAR4 Quintile 1 area using the lookup tool on the Office for Students website which shows the POLAR4 Quintile of the postcode entered.
For postcodes in England, you can use the deprivation lookup tool to see Index of Multiple Deprivation (IMD) information. When you enter your postcode, it will create an xlsx or csv spreadsheet you can download and open.
Column F in the spreadsheet will show the IMD decile of your postcode. If the IMD decile is 1 or 2, this means your postcode is in an IMD Quintile 1 area.
For questions about the Access and Participation bursary, contact email@example.com – we will be happy to help.