How to Fund Your Masters Programme in 2022
Graduates who are passionate in acquiring postgraduate studies can face some financial challenges in making the dream a reality. They are several opportunities that can be tapped by these applicants in ensuring that they’re enrolled for postgraduate courses of their choice.
After making the decision to take up the challenges and opportunities of a postgraduate degree, the next step for most students is working out how to pay for it! The actual cost and how to fund your Master’s programme might not be as huge as you think.
While funding for a postgraduate study could be a bit complex than undergraduate, you can still thrive and earned the result afterwards.
This guide is here to assist youwith necessaryinformationyou need. We’ve put together a checklist of the different funding types that could be available to you, with links to our in-depth resources and FAQs, as well as a handy Masters funding action plan.
How to Fund a Masters:
Are you a student in UK ? Then, there are some funding options you can explore for your Master’s programme in UK. The most well-known of these is through a Masters loan, with each UK nation offering its own postgraduate student finance scheme:
- England – up to £11,836
- Scotland – up to £10,000
- Wales – up to £18,025
- Northern Ireland- up to £5,500.
In general, you’re advised to only apply for a postgraduate loan in a nation you resides and not where you plan on moving to study. Unfortunately, international students aren’t usually eligible for these loans, although EU nationals with settled status in the UK may qualify for the opportunity.
There are other sources you can get for Masters funding and they include:
- Charities and Trusts
- University Scholarships
- Research Council
- Crowd funding
- Employer Scholarship
- Disabled Students Allowance
In addition to these, there is also a tendency of working during your Master’s study. Balancing employment and your studies is undeniably challenging, but it can be done – particularly if you’re studying a Masters on a part-time basis.
Now, let’s talk about each options of funding stated above.
- Charities and Trusts: It might come as a surprise to you when you get to know that a lot of funding for postgraduate study is actually available from charitable trusts and learned societies.
All sorts of organisations are interested in helping promote new research and training in particular fields and, as a talented postgraduate, you could be just the sort of person they’re looking for.
Grants from charities and similar organisations tend to be relatively small – between £100 and £1,000 on average – but there’s no reason why you can’t combine lots of them to cover your costs. In fact, this approach to financing postgraduate study has become widely accepted that it’s even got its own name: ‘portfolio funding’.
- University Scholarships: Universities are very much interested in encouraging whilst supporting good applicants to their postgraduate programmes and some will have significant financial resources available to help them do this.
You can check out some University’s portal to have more insights about their grants and scholarships for applicants at different levels.
- Research Council: The seven UK Research Council represents represent one of the most important sources of postgraduate funding in the UK. They are meant to provide support for research projects and for the training of potential new researchers which could be you.
Although, most of their resources are now directed towards PhD programmes, you can sometimes receive Research Council funding for Masters degrees – particularly 1+3 or New Route PhD programmes. These begin with a taught Masters degree in the first year, followed by a 3-year PhD programme. Funding usually covers course fees and a tax-free maintenance grant.
Masters degrees that possess the opportunity for research council funding will be advertised as such. You can find a number of these programmes listed at FindAPhD.com . They’ll usually be referred to as ‘4-Year’, ‘1+3’ or ‘New Route PhD Programmes’ and some will include the name of the Research Council in the project title.
- Crowd funding: This process involves asking for lots of small donations towards the cost of your Masters. This kind of approach requires plenty of organisation. You’ll also need to set out a compelling reason for people to support your ambition. Applying For International Student Loans to Study in The U.S
If your campaign is captivating, you will find out that postgraduate crowd funding can go a long way in offsetting some (if not all) of your Master fees.
- Employer Scholarship: While this can’t be applicable to all students, it is a good idea when you ask an employer about the possibility of support to gain new qualifications.
Verily, this strategy is more likely to be successful if your Masters is going to help develop skills that are relevant to your job.
Asking for money to study Victorian poetry when you’re actually working in an IT consultancy firm might not be a great idea unless your boss is remarkably generous (or a big fan of Alfred Tennyson).
- Disabled Students Allowance: While it might seems to be very challenging, it is not impossible to earn a Master’s degree whilst managing a disability, illness, or learning difficulty. It is very possible that additional funding may be available to help support you during your studies.
Masters funding for International Students:
While UK postgraduate loans aren’t open for international students, there are a number of schemes that exist specifically to support international Masters students, including prestigious programmes such as
- Commonwealth Scholarships
- Chevening Scholarships
- GREAT Scholarships
A Master Funding Action Plan
Now, you are informed of the main sources of Master’s funding that are available for students, it is right time to pen down a funding package that will serve as action plan for your pursuit.
- Work out what your budget is: Firstly, it is neccesary that you calculate your budget that will cover your expenses during the Master’s programme. If your funding plans involve one of the UK’s postgraduate loans, they may well cover your tuition fees, but not your rent, food and other important costs. Knowing how much this funding gap is will help you target your search towards suitable potential sources of income.
- Start early: The application for postgraduate loans are usually opened in June for courses beginning in autumn. The process is reasonably quick and simple (and can be completed online), as the loans aren’t means-tested. Also, you don’t need to have received a university offer before applying – you can simply nominate an eligible programme.
- Get to know the maintenance element of the postgraduate loan: As we’ve already covered, each UK nation has its own postgraduate student finance system. Unlike the undergraduate system you’re probably already familiar with, there isn’t a separate maintenance element if you’re applying for a Masters loan in England, Wales or Northern Ireland.
- You can’t pick and choose which nation’s student finance system you use: Sadly, it is not possible for you to choose which loan system is most attractive to you – you are only eligible for the nation in which you’re ordinarily resident. So, if you went to university in England but want to study in Wales, you’d need to use the English Masters loan to do so (and not the Welsh postgraduate finance system).
- Always remember alumni discount: There are several universities that offer discounts of 5% or 10% to graduates who are returning for a postgraduate degree, so it’s well worth bearing this mind if your alma mater offer a course that suits you and your aims.
- Maintain an open mind: It’s always important to keep an open mind when it comes to postgraduate funding – if you look hard enough, you’re bound to come across some unlikely sources of financial funding. You should be meticulous while you sought for funding options.