Advanced Learner Loans - Eligibility

Whether you can qualify for an Advanced Learner Loan depends on your:

  • course
  • age
  • nationality and residency status
  • previous study

We’ve created an eligibility tool to use if you’re considering an Advanced Learner Loan.

Course information

You must be 19 or older on the first day of your course.

The course must be:

 

Course length

The course must last at least 2 weeks to be eligible for funding, but there’s no maximum time limit in which you have to complete your course. However, there are maximum limits on how long we can pay a loan for.

The following table shows the maximum amount of time we can pay a loan for depending on the course.

Course Maximum time limit

AS or A level

2 years

QAA Access to Higher Education Diploma

2 years
Certificate

2 years

Diploma

3 years

 

Nationality or residency status

You must usually:

  • be living in the UK on the first day of your course
  • have been ordinarily resident in the UK, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man for 3 years before starting their course
  • be a UK national or have ‘settled status’ 
    (have no restrictions on how long you can stay in the UK)

 

You may also qualify if:

  • you’re a UK national, or someone with settled status, but you live somewhere else in the European Economic Area (EEA)
  • you’re an EU national or a family member of one
  • you have lived in the UK for at least 20 years (or at least half of your life)
  • you’re a refugee or the relative of one
  • you’re an EEA or Swiss migrant worker, or the relative of one
  • you’re the child of a Swiss national
  • you’re the child of a Turkish worker
  • you’ve been granted humanitarian protection or you’re the relative of someone who has been granted humanitarian protection
  • you’re a stateless person (including any eligible family members).*
  • you're granted leave to remain (or enter and remain depending on domicile) under section 67 of the Immigration Act 2016.
  • you're granted indefinite leave to remain as a victim of domestic violence or abuse (for new students starting a course on or after 1 August 2020)
  • you're granted 'Calais leave' to remain, or are a child of someone granted 'Calais leave' to remain (for new students starting a course on or after 1 August 2020)

Most EU, other EEA and Swiss nationals starting courses on or after 1 August 2021 will not be eligible for support from Student Finance England. Students whose courses start before 1 August 2021 will continue to get student finance for the rest of their course. Find out more on GOV.UK


To be eligible under Section 67 and Calais Leave, you must have been living in the UK for at least three years before the first day of the first academic year of your course.

To be eligible as a ‘stateless person’ you must:

  • be a new student starting on or after 1 August 2018
  • have been ordinarily resident in the UK the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man for 3 years before the first day of the first academic year of your course

If you live outside of England you may also be eligible for an Advanced Learner Loan if you’re:

  • a serving member of the UK armed forces
  • the spouse or civil partner of a serving member
  • a child, step-child or adoptive child living with a member of the UK Armed Forces serving outwith England
  • a dependent parent living with a serving member

Previous study

You can usually only get a maximum of 4 Advanced Learner Loans.

The exception to this is if you’re studying an AS or A level, where you can apply for up to 8 loans, and can still get a further 3 loans for courses that are not AS or A Levels. Previous study won’t affect your entitlement to your first loan.

You’ll be able to get up to 4 loans for the same type of vocational qualification. However, you’ll still only be entitled to one loan for a programme of A Levels or an Access to HE Diploma.