Funding Part-time Courses

Summary: Financial information about funding part-time courses at West College Scotland.

Funding can help you study subjects such as film and television

Students who are studying a part-time course at college are not normally eligible for the same type of funding mechanisms as those studying on a full-time basis. However, alternative sources of funding, such as those mentioned below, may be available to you.

Remember, you are responsible for checking your own entitlement to funds. So if there is anything you are unsure about or if you would like to find out more information about any part-time funding options, contact the Student Information Centre on either of the numbers below.

Career Development Loans

If you are over 18 years of age and unable to get financial support to help you study (whether full-time or part-time) you may be able to apply for a Career Development Loan (CDL). The government manages CDLs through partnership with a number of high street banks.

Loans between £300 and £8,000 are available to cover up to 80% of course fees (100% if you have been unemployed for more than 3 months).

For further information please contact:
Career Development Loans
Tel: 0800 585 505

Individual Learning Accounts (ILA Scotland)

ILA Scotland

West College Scotland is a registered ILA Scotland Learning Provider and many part-time and evening courses are eligible for ILA Scotland funding. ILA Scotland is a Scottish Government scheme that helps you pay for learning that you can do at a time, place, pace and in a way to suit you.

If you are 16 or over, living in Scotland and your income is £22,000 a year or less, or if you are on benefits, you can get up to £200 towards a range of courses. The money is not a loan – so you don’t have to pay any of it back.

To find out more, and to register, call the ILA Scotland helpline on 0808 100 1090 or visit

Part-time Fee Grant for Higher Education Courses

This scheme provides up to £500 a year towards the cost of tuition fees.

To qualify for this funding, you should have an individual income of £22,000 a year or less. You also need to be studying a part-time Higher Education course, Professional Development Award (PDA) or Continuing Professional Development (CPD) at levels 7-10 of the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF) and complete between 40-90 SCQF credits per year. You must also be studying at a Scottish Institution. Click here for a useful guide from SAAS on the part time fee grant.

Educational Trusts, Charities & Scholarships

There are a large number of trusts, charities and scholarships that give limited amounts of financial assistance to students. These awards do not have to be repaid, however if you are receiving certain benefits or if you already receive a college bursary or grant funding from the Scottish Awards Agency for Scotland, then the amount of award you receive may affect your award or benefit entitlement.

For further information on how much Educational Trust & Charity funding you may attract without affecting your existing support, please contact the relevant student funding body or your local benefits agency for information on income disregards.

Information on Educational Trusts and Charities can be obtained from the following bodies:

The Register of Educational Endowments
Scottish Awards Agency for Scotland, Gyleview House, 3 Redheughs Rigg, South Gyle, Edinburgh, EH12 9HH.
Tel: 0845 111 1711

The Carnegie UK Trust
Andrew Carnegie House, Pittencrieff Street, Dunfermline, KY12 9AW
Tel: 01383 721445

Educational Grants Advisory Service (EGAS)
501-505 Kingsland Road, Dalston, London, E8 4AU
Tel: 020 7254 6251

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 college Finance 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.

Discount for Senior Citizens

If a fee waiver or Individual Learning Account (ILA) is not available senior citizens may apply for a 25% discount on course fees.

Further 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 for more advice and help with your individual case.

Student Information Centre:
Tel: 01475 724433 (Greenock)

Also read Guide to FE Funding Booklet 2013-14 for more funding information.

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