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Postgraduate Funding?

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    Hi, I want to do a masters course after I finish my undergraduate degree but I'm a bit worried about funding/paying for it. As far as I know you don't get a basic student loan for fees from student finance you have to pay them yourself/get sponsorship. But what about maintenance money?

    If you were doing a full time masters course and therefore could only have a part-time job there would be nowhere near enough money to pay rent/living costs! How do people afford to be able to a masters degree, unless they live at home and don't have to pay rent/living costs? I really want to stay in my uni city to do a postgraduate course but if it's the case that there's no funding at all then I really can't afford to
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    Three options

    1) Pick a course at a University near home and live there. If you're thinking of doing this and the University needs a fair bit of travelling talk to the department and they might be able to arrange to have all the teaching on only a couple of days rather than spread out over the week.

    2) Career development loan these are usually applicable to masters courses. They have low APRs (usually 5-6%) but they are a proper loan that you have to pay back on time every month from the moment your course ends i.e. not like a student loan that you only pay back when you're earning. - I know a few people who did MSc degrees on these.

    3) Ask your parents for money/a loan and hope they are rich and/or generous. (In reality this is the most common way people do masters degrees)
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    Another option is to take a year out and work to save up then continue to work part time throughout


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    (Original post by BabyGirl92)
    Hi, I want to do a masters course after I finish my undergraduate degree but I'm a bit worried about funding/paying for it. As far as I know you don't get a basic student loan for fees from student finance you have to pay them yourself/get sponsorship. But what about maintenance money?

    If you were doing a full time masters course and therefore could only have a part-time job there would be nowhere near enough money to pay rent/living costs! How do people afford to be able to a masters degree, unless they live at home and don't have to pay rent/living costs? I really want to stay in my uni city to do a postgraduate course but if it's the case that there's no funding at all then I really can't afford to
    I paid for my masters degree with a career development loan.

    In the current climate, I would be wary of doing any full-time study if you have to self-finance. I would suggest looking at part time or, preferably, distance learning programmes instead. This way you can minimise your outgoings by living with parents, for example, and still claim Jobseeker's Allowance while you look for work.

    I would not assume you can get even a part-time job to supplement your income if you choose to study full time. And you may find that you struggle to fit your work around your study; most masters programmes are very intensive.
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    (Original post by BabyGirl92)
    How do people afford to be able to a masters degree, unless they live at home and don't have to pay rent/living costs?
    Either with their savings, or money they get from loans or family. That being said, amazing candidates, even at the master's level, can count on scholarships to reduce the total cost. It may be a tuition waiver, or even include a stipend, it depends. It also largely depend on the field, science degrees have much more funding.
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    I managed to pay for my fees with a loan from family, savings and a small scholarship from my uni.

    How I managed to then live is a different story. I wanted a job but the time required for my masters didn't really allow that until now, and then when I get a job I have to leave as I had to take too much time off to conduct research for the masters!

    I am lucky that I don't 'need' a lot to live off other than travel and food as I live rent free with family.

    I would advise saving up, or really looking to have saved enough to get through the first 2 semesters.

    career development loans are also an option but depending on the cost of your fees really think about this. My boyf used one for his masters fees (12k worth!) and now pays £215 per month towards the loan. Luckily he got a good PhD after it, but that took 6 months to find so it was a scary time! So really think about how you would pay it back after the course finishes.

    Good luck!
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    (Original post by Twinkle1)
    I managed to pay for my fees with a loan from family, savings and a small scholarship from my uni.

    How I managed to then live is a different story. I wanted a job but the time required for my masters didn't really allow that until now, and then when I get a job I have to leave as I had to take too much time off to conduct research for the masters!

    I am lucky that I don't 'need' a lot to live off other than travel and food as I live rent free with family.

    I would advise saving up, or really looking to have saved enough to get through the first 2 semesters.

    career development loans are also an option but depending on the cost of your fees really think about this. My boyf used one for his masters fees (12k worth!) and now pays £215 per month towards the loan. Luckily he got a good PhD after it, but that took 6 months to find so it was a scary time! So really think about how you would pay it back after the course finishes.

    Good luck!
    It seems tough

    I really want to do a masters at the city I'm at now in Forensic Psychology, it's not offered nearer to home so it's my only option! I'm working at the moment but only around 12 hours per week at £5 an hour and I need that money for my summer rent so there's no way I am going to be able to save money from this job for it.

    I also feel like if I work for a year to make money I won't end up going back to studying full-time then, and they don't offer it full time.

    I will definitely look into the CPD loan!
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    (Original post by BabyGirl92)
    It seems tough

    I really want to do a masters at the city I'm at now in Forensic Psychology, it's not offered nearer to home so it's my only option! I'm working at the moment but only around 12 hours per week at £5 an hour and I need that money for my summer rent so there's no way I am going to be able to save money from this job for it.

    I also feel like if I work for a year to make money I won't end up going back to studying full-time then, and they don't offer it full time.

    I will definitely look into the CPD loan!
    It sucks but its one of the biggest injustices in the education system. In most of Europe Masters courses are free. Also, what with massive government University funding cuts we're going to see a reduction in post grad scholarships (as in order to charge full fees priority will have to be given to funding 'disadvantaged' undergrads) and an increase in masters fees, (to make up for the deficit in undergrad funding).

    Fun times.
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    (Original post by LostRiot)
    It sucks but its one of the biggest injustices in the education system. In most of Europe Masters courses are free. Also, what with massive government University funding cuts we're going to see a reduction in post grad scholarships (as in order to charge full fees priority will have to be given to funding 'disadvantaged' undergrads) and an increase in masters fees, (to make up for the deficit in undergrad funding).

    Fun times.
    LostRiot makes a good point. The increase in masters fees are going up to match undergrad fees. When I applied the fee was listed as 3k and when my application year fees were emailed they increased to 4.5k. People are willing to pay them and international students pay three times more than national students.

    The situation is pretty awful. I would suggest the trends we are seeing may result in academia becoming closed off to those from poorer backgrounds as masters are expensive with funding as rare as gold dust. PhD funding is not much better. Extremely competitive. My social science department of 21 disciplines had 18 funded PhD places... Unless you can somehow self fund a masters and a PhD then academia is closed to you.

    Personally I am lucky. As I planned to go onto a PhD from the very start for my undergrad and managed to budget to save 3-4K from student loan and grant. I also managed to get on to a MSc course before the price skyrockets up to 8 or 9k. I also have a very supportive lecturer really helping me on my PhD application who believes I will get it second time round with a few minor edits to my application and volunteering as a research assistant (I came second for one of the funded places).
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    I'm paying for my Masters completely through student loans (maintenance and all). While it is true that I am an international student attending uni in the UK, I would probably have to pay just as much getting a Masters in the US. Honestly, I'm really lucky that I don't have any undergraduate debt right now: many of my friends are in (on average) $30-50,000 in debt just for a Bachelors degree.
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    (Original post by LostRiot)
    It sucks but its one of the biggest injustices in the education system. In most of Europe Masters courses are free. Also, what with massive government University funding cuts we're going to see a reduction in post grad scholarships (as in order to charge full fees priority will have to be given to funding 'disadvantaged' undergrads) and an increase in masters fees, (to make up for the deficit in undergrad funding).

    Fun times.
    A friend of mine is studying at the Rotterdam University in Netherlands a master in finance paying only 1.500

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