Advanced Learner Loans

For 19+ students taking a course at level 3 or above

Government funding for level 3 courses is available only to students who are aged between 19 and 23 at the start of their course who have not already achieved a full level 3 qualification.

If you are aged 19-23 and already have a full level 3 (for example 2 A-level passes, a BTEC level 3 subsidiary diploma or an NVQ level 3), or if you are aged 24 or above at the start of the course, you will have to pay the tuition fee. 

The Government has made available an Advanced Learner Loan to help students in these circumstances to fund their tuition. The Advanced Learner Loan will not cover the course registration fee, however, students who have been awarded the Advanced Learner Loan can also apply for a 19+ Bursary and if they are eligible (see below) will have their registration fee paid from college bursary funds.

To qualify for an Advanced Learner Loan you must:

Be studying for a qualification at level 3 or 4 such as Access to HE diplomas, BTEC level 3 diplomas and other level 3 or 4 diplomas and certificates which is on the approved list of eligible qualifications. The Advanced Learner loan does not cover Higher National Diploma/Certificate or degree courses.
Meet nationality/residency criteria: be living in the UK on the first day of your course, have been living in the UK, Channel Islands or Isle of Man for 3 years before starting your course, be a UK national or have ‘settled status’ (this means there’s no restrictions on how long you can stay).
You may also qualify if you are an EU national or a family member of one, a refugee, a migrant worker, the child of a Swiss national, the child of a Turkish worker.

The amount of money you can borrow depends on your course. You can take out a loan to cover your course tuition fees up to a set maximum level. The minimum amount you can borrow is £300.

When applying for an Advanced Learner Loan, there is no credit check, and the household income is not be taken into account. The loan repayments are linked to what you earn once you have finished your course, not how much you borrowed.

You only need to start paying back your Advanced Learner Loan when you have finished your course and you are earning more than £21,000 a year. 

If your loan is for an Access to Higher Education course and you progress to complete a Student Finance England loan funded HE course, your Advanced Learner Loan will be written off and you will not have to pay it back.

How to apply to apply for an Advanced Learner Loan

To apply for an Advanced Learner Loan you must first apply to the college for the course and be offered a place. The college will then supply you with a ‘Learning and Funding Information’ letter, which provides the details you will need to make your application. You can then make your loan application online or download an application form at If you have any queries regarding the Advanced Learner Loan please telephone Student Finance England on 0300 100 0619 (call charges apply).

Advanced Learner Loan Bursary Fund

The college has a 19+ Bursary Fund, which provides financial assistance to eligible students who take out an Advanced Learner Loan. If awarded this bursary can contribute towards the following: 
Registration fee.
Material fees.
Kit and equipment.
Childcare costs. 

To qualify for support your household income must be below £21,000 (for the 2016/17 tax year) including housing and council tax benefits. For further information on the 19+ Bursary Fund please click here.
If you require any further help please contact Student Financial Support Team:


Telephone:  01322 629400 and ask to speak to a member  Student Financial Support at the campus you will be attending. (Dartford or Gravesend)