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Student Loan Company & Postgraduate Loan - information and advice Watch

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    Good Evening,

    I'm currently experiencing severe issues with the SLC and thought I'd share my experience on here to ensure that you guys do not encounter the same problems.

    OK - so...

    In November 2016, I commenced the MSc in Human Resources Management with The Open University. The application for the postgraduate loan ran smoothly and payments were made in time.

    In January 2017, I encountered issues with the Open University and withdrew from the course. However, this isn't the problem I'm experiencing. On 04 January 2017, I spoke to somebody at the SLC to advise them of what was happening, and also to check whether a particular course offered by another institution (LLM in Employment Law and Practice with the Robert Gordon University) would be eligible for the Postgraduate Loan. The lady on the telephone confirmed that it would and that I'd need to fill out a change of circumstances form. Based on the information provided, I then went ahead with my withdrawal with the Open University and proceeded with an application for the new LLM course.

    I was offered an unconditional place on the LLM course, however I was then told by the SLC that this course was not eligible. I called their complaints department today to express my frustrations.

    On the back end of this, I also decided to call the Robert Gordon University and they said that the course should not be eligible based on specific criteria that the SLC set - as follows:

    Your course must: be provided by a university or college in the UK (including the Open University) lead to a postgraduate master’s degree It can be taught or research-based and studied:

    full-time, lasting 1 or 2 academic years
    part-time, lasting 2 to 4 academic years - no more than twice the length of the equivalent full-time course
    part-time for up to 3 years, where no equivalent full-time course exists

    The LLM course is offered on a full time basis for 1 year, or a part time basis for 3 years. This does not match the criteria, as above (i.e. if it was on a part time basis for 2 years, this would be sufficient).

    I'm not sure who is to blame here but the SLC are adamant that the course does fit the criteria. I'm in the process of complaining based on the fact that I was mis-advised, but now left with no course. I acted on the information provided to me by an employee of the SLC - I may just withdraw my complaint as it will be a complete waste of time as the outcome I'm looking for (for them to admit they made a mistake and honour the funding) is highly unlikely.

    The moral of the story? Always do your research before completing certain actions - when I say research, I recommend you completely bypass the SLC Postgraduate Loan call centre and use various websites out there to assess your eligibility yourself!
 
 
 
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