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ALF – Eligibility

You cannot apply directly to the Access to Learning Fund and must apply for Financial Support if you wish to access the fund. After you have submitted an application for Financial Support, one of our experienced advisors will contact you within 10 working days to gather more information about you, your income and expenditure and will make a recommendation for the support that is best for you and your circumstances.

Unfortunately, not all students are eligible to receive support from the Access to Learning Fund.

The Access to Learning Fund is for home students registered on a course. A home student is defined as a person who meets certain residency conditions (the same conditions apply to eligibility for student support, for example, the maintenance loan). Usually this means you have an unrestricted right to enter and remain in the UK, and you have been ordinarily resident in the UK for four years prior to the start of your course. None of this time must have been wholly or mainly for the purpose of receiving full time education.

Overseas and EU students who are eligible for tuition fee support will not receive a recommendation for support from the Access to Learning Fund. For further information on support available if you are an EU or Overseas Student please contact The Student Union Advice and Representation Centre 01772 894880 for advice or The <i> in the Library (01772 895000).

The criteria detailed below defines the students that can apply to the Access to Learning Fund:

1) Undergraduate students, either full time or part time, including part time distance learners, following a higher education course, including sandwich courses and any period of placement. All students who study part-time courses on or after 1 September 2012 are required to study at least 25 per cent (30 credits) FTE in each year.

2) Full-time and part-time students on a postgraduate course (including distance learners) following a course that is a minimum of 1 year, and providing that part-time postgraduate students are studying at least 50% per academic year for courses starting before 1 September 2012 and 25% per each academic year for courses starting on or after 1 September 2012 of a full-time equivalent course.

3) NHS students eligible to apply for a means-tested bursary or a non-means-tested bursary.

Students who have interrupted their studies

If you are a ‘home’ student who has not permanently withdrawn from your studies and you intend to return after your time out, you can still apply to UCLan for Financial Support and may receive a recommendation to apply for help from the Access to Learning Fund. For example, if you are unable to attend your course for health or caring reasons or some other unavoidable circumstances you can apply for help.

Priorities for Assistance

The Access to Learning Fund is designed to help any eligible student who has a particular financial need, but we cannot guarantee that all students will receive an award and we cannot always meet all the costs that you might apply for. We have identified some groups of students that may require more support and prioritise these groups of students for support through our Financial Support package*. The priority groups are:

  • Students with children (especially lone parents)
  • Students with existing financial commitments, including priority debts
  • Disabled students / student unable to work due to illness
  • Students who have entered higher education from care or are estranged from their parents
  • Students who are homeless
  • Students receiving the final year loan rate, who are in financial difficulty
  • Students who are carers

*Please note that if you are in a priority group you are not guaranteed to qualify for an award. If you are not in one of the priority groups you can still apply but you must provide as much evidence as possible to show why you have a particular need.

Unfortunately students on Degree Apprenticeship courses are not eligible to apply to the Access to Learning Fund. We recommend that you contact the Students Union Advice Centre on 01772 894880 / for further advice on any additional financial support that may be available.

Financial Support Enquiries:
Telephone: 01772 895000 / Email: