Fees and Funding
There is a variety of different funding options available to students when studying at South Essex College depending on circumstance. When applying for funding you will be assessed for your eligibility based on certain requirements.
To see if you are eligible for government funding or to see if there is any other available funding in regards to paying course fees, contact the College Funding Team.
Be aware that funding rules and policies are subject to change each year, please ensure that you have the most up-to-date information and advice.
16-18 year olds
If you are aged 16-18 on the first day of your course, the fees are waived.
If you are 19 or over, you may be required to pay some or all of your fees. This can depend on the level of your course, your previous qualifications or your personal income and employment status.
There is lots of help available for paying course fees and there are many circumstances where you can get courses fully funded. It may be that the fee can be waived partly or entirely. You can also apply for an Advanced Learner Loan to cover the full fee or apply for a discretionary bursary to contribute to the fee cost.
If you are required to pay some or all of your fee you may be able to set up a direct debit payment plan. Because there are many different options, we suggest that you contact the College and talk to a course adviser or a team member from the Funding Department in our Student Services team, so that we can look into your individual circumstances and see if any funding is available.
Types of funds available
If you are aged between 16 and 18 and your family is on a low income, you may be eligible to receive a contribution toward the additional costs associated with your course as agreed by the College and a contribution towards your travel.
If you are aged between 16 and 18 and can meet the following criteria, you may be eligible for a Vulnerable Bursary worth up to £1,200
- I am a person under 19 who is looked after by the Local Authority
- I am a person under 19 who is looked after by the Leaving Care Team
- I am a person under 19 who is an unaccompanied asylum-seeker who is looked after by the Local Authority
- I am a person under 19 who is in receipt of Income Support/Universal Credit in my own name
- I am a person under 19 who is in receipt of both Employment Support Allowance/Universal Credit and Disability Living Allowance/Personal Independence
- Payments in my own name I am aged between 16 and 18 on 31st August 2022 and I am funded through the European Social Fund (ESF)
If you are aged 19+ and on a low income, you may be eligible to receive a contribution towards the additional costs associated with your course as agreed by the College, together with (Ofsted registered) childcare and a contribution towards your travel. Also, if you are not eligible for one of the above fee waivers, you may be able to receive a contribution of up to 50% towards your tuition fees.
If you are aged between 19 and 23, either employed or unemployed on the start date of your course and need to enrol on an Entry or Level 1 course before progressing onto your first full level 2, you may be eligible to have your tuition fees waived. If eligible, your department will also supply the essential materials, equipment and cover the cost of any compulsory trips.
If you do not already hold a full level two qualification, you are entitled to funding. This means that no course fees will apply for any government-approved full level two course.
Examples of a full level two course include:
- GCSE Graded A*-C
- Level 2 NVQ
- BTEC First Diploma
‘Level Two Award’ qualifications are usually not equivalent to a full level two.
If you are unemployed, but already hold a full level two qualification, you are still entitled to study fully-funded level two qualifications. However, if you are employed, partial government funding will apply, so you will need to pay some fees. You can spread the cost of the fees over the academic year of study.
Student Bursary (Financial Support)
Student bursary policy
The student bursary policy sets out the college’s policy on calculation, eligibility and payment of college bursaries. These bursaries are designed to support as many students as possible in a fair and equal manner:
Access your information quickly at anytime
Apply and access your information online from anywhere – on your computer, table or smartphone.
Upload your documents online
Upload your/your parents evidence of household income online to make it quicker and easier to apply for bursary support.
View your bursary payments online
View your payments online and check when you will be receiving your payments.
Apply with our online application system
Our online application system allows you to apply, access and view your bursary payments easily and securely.
With the online portal you'll be able to see any upcoming payments and view your payments status.
Read our bursary online application guide for guidance on using the online application system:
Student Portal - "How To" Videos
We have created two short video guides to help you register for an account and start your Bursary application:
Additional help for your first course
If you are aged between 19 and 23 on the start date of your course, your first (i.e. you do not hold one already) level 1, 2 or 3 qualifications will be fully funded by the government. If eligible, your faculty will also supply the essential materials, equipment and cover the cost of any compulsory trips.
Ensure you can afford it
If you are thinking of studying, you should always look into the funding options on offer and find out the true cost of your course as soon as possible.
Studying can be expensive and you will need to weigh up the options available to ensure you can afford to study and how much you will need to be saving for your equipment costs, for example.
We can also assist you with CV writing if you are looking for part-time work to assist with funding your studies.