If your postgraduate course starts on or after 1 August 2021, you can borrow up to £11,570. The total amount borrowed will be paid evenly over the length of their course.  Applications can now be made online through Gov.uk/postgraduateloan.


Loans are available for any taught or research Masters Programmes, in any subject, full-time or part-time, beginning from 1 August 2016.

  • Any Masters programme in any subject, taught or research can apply
  • The course can be full-time (lasting 1 or 2 academic years) or part-time (lasting 2 to 4 academic years) and distance learning
  • It’s paid directly to the student and it is not based on your income or the income of your household.
  • Student can borrow up to £11,570 for 2021/22 academic year
  • Anyone aged under 60 is eligible
  • Programmes must be classified at level 7 (Masters) on the National Qualifications Framework and not level 8 (Doctoral).
  • You can get the Postgraduate Master’s Loan if you’re a UK or EU national, or have ‘settled status’, so there are no restrictions on how long you can stay
  • If you are unsure as to whether you qualify, please check the information on the UKCISA  and SFE Eligibility website.
  • Application is via Student Finance England, the same as for undergraduate student loans




(Academic Year)

2016/17 10,000
2017/18 10,280
2018/19 10,609
2019/20 10,906 
2020/21 11,222
2021/22 11,570

More information

An overview of Postgraduate Master's Finance and details of how to apply is available from your regional funding agency's website:

Receiving the loan

The maximum loan amount is £11,222 for postgraduate students starting in 2020/21 AY.

You need to register on your programme in order to receive payments. Payments will be made directly into your bank account.

Payments will be made once confirmation of study is received from the RVC, and will be in three instalments per year.

  • The first instalment (33%) will be due on the start date of your programme.
  • The second payment (33%) will be due on the last Wednesday of the fourth month of the programme (typically the end of December, where the first month of the programme is September).
  • The third payment (34%) will be due on the last Wednesday of the seventh month of the programme (typically the end of March).

Please be aware that SFE has stipulated that the RVC cannot confirm registration for PG students prior to the start of their study. This means that registered PG students will not receive their first loan instalment until 3-4 working days after their programme start date. The 2nd and 3rd payments will be paid on their due dates as detailed above. 

Approximate postgraduate loan instalments for students who borrow the full amount for 2020/21 AY

Course length 1 year 2 years 3 years 4 years
Annual amount £11,222 £5,611 £3,741 £2,806
1st payment £3,703 £1,852 £1,235 £926
2nd payment £3,703 £1,852 £1,235 £926
3rd payment £3,816 £1,907 £1,271 £954

Approximate postgraduate loan instalments for students who borrow the full amount for 2019/20 AY

Course length 1 year 2 years 3 years 4 years
Annual amount £10,906 £5,453 £3,635 £2,727
1st payment £3,599 £1,800 £1,200 £900
2nd payment £3,599 £1,800 £1,200 £900
3rd payment £3,726 £1,854 £1,236 £927

Integrated courses

You will not be eligible for a Postgraduate Master’s Loan if your course is:

Intercalated degrees

Postgraduate loans are available for Masters Degrees taken as an intercalated year within an extended undergraduate degree.

Intercalated year 

Note that there is no support provided under the student support regulations (i.e. tuition fee support, maintenance grant/loan) during a year that a master’s degree level course is intercalated into an undergraduate degree (although the student may be eligible for Postgraduate Loan).

Tuition fee support, maintenance grant and maintenance loan are not available post intercalation of master’s and where a student holds the master’s award.

Consequently to avoid risking a potential impact on funding your undergraduate degree you should delay the graduation of your MSc Programme until after you have completed your undergrad programme. This should be communicated to RVC at the point of your application to the MSc course. Alternatively to request a deferment of your award you should send an email to Student Records  and request that your award is deferred until completion of your veterinary degree.

Masters 'top ups'

Postgraduate loans are NOT available for partial MSc programmes. To receive a postgraduate loan you need to be studying a full 180 credits.

PGCert (Postgraduate Certificate), PGDip (Postgraduate Diploma)

The Postgraduate loan is NOT available for stand-alone postgraduate certificate or diploma courses.

Other funding

Receipt of other sources of postgraduate funding - scholarships, bursaries, studentships, other loans from private providers, etc - will NOT affect eligibility for a postgraduate loan.


Repayments are based on your income, not what you borrowed, and you won’t start paying back your loan until you earn over a certain threshold.

The loan is repaid concurrently with any other loans, such as undergraduate loans, you have from the Student Loan Company.

Borrowers will be liable to repay the loan from the April after study completion and once you are earning income above the current threshold.

Individuals will be able to make voluntary repayments prior to this if they choose.

From September 2018 until 31 August 2019, the interest rate for borrowers in England taking out a Postgraduate Masters will be 6.3% (RPI + 3%).

The repayment threshold for Postgraduate loans continues to be £21,000. For more details please see SLC website.

Interest rate You’ll be charged interest from the day you get the first payment until your loan is repaid in full or cancelled. The interest rate on the loan is currently 6.3%.

Example: You earn £2,500 a month before tax. This is £750 over the monthly threshold. You’ll repay £45 (6% of this amount) each month.

Loans are written-off 30 years after repayments are due, if the borrower dies, or if the borrower is permanently disabled and cannot work due to disability.

Please contact Student Finance England for more information and if your circumstances change or you leave your course early.

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