Funding Courses If Receiving Benefits

Summary: Helpful information about studying while receiving state benefits at West College Scotland. Introduces Part-time Fee Waivers.

Getting the right funding available is music to your ears

It can often be possible to study whilst in receipt of certain benefits. If you intend to study full-time at college, please contact the Student Information Centre for further advice regarding the relationship between your benefit entitlement and other types of student support.

Detailed below are common examples of how it can be possible to study whilst on benefit.

Part-time Fee Waivers

If you receive certain state benefits such as Income Support, Job Seekers Allowance, Incapacity Benefit or DLA or if you receive Working Tax Credit you may not have to pay the tuition fee for part time day or evening class courses. Please contact the Student Funding Office for further information.

If you are unemployed it may be possible to study part time without it affecting your benefit as long as the course you undertake is less than 16 hours per week (some students under 19 years of age are restricted to the maximum of 12 hours per week). Generally under Income Support and Job Seekers Allowance Regulations, study is restricted to “16 guided learning hours” per week (i.e. times when a staff member is present to give specific guidance towards the qualification). The unemployed person must remain available for work, be actively seeking work and willing to abandon the programme of study should an employment opportunity arise.

If you are interested in studying part time whilst in receipt of benefit it is advisable to discuss your plans with a college Student Adviser or the benefits agency before committing to any programme of study.

Get more information

The best piece of advice we can give is find out as much as you can about the financial implications of coming to college. Speak to our Student Information Centre or Student Funding Office for more advice and help with your individual case.

Student Information Centre:
Tel: 01475 724433 (Greenock)

Student Funding Office:
Tel: 01475 553150 (Greenock)

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