Accelerated levels: professionals, cons and Pupil Finance

Accelerated levels can provide the similar qualification, simply in much less time and for much less cash. However what are the drawbacks? And what funding are you able to get?

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Accelerated levels supply a less expensive path to commencement, serving up the identical course content material in a fraction of the time. And, as you will solely be at uni for 2 years, you need to have a smaller Pupil Mortgage to repay on the finish.

However accelerated levels aren’t for everybody. The condensed timeframe means you will need to sacrifice alternatives to socialize and work, and you may additionally want to think about the funding on supply too. Whereas it ought to be cheaper, you might discover that the additional Upkeep Mortgage you are entitled to is not sufficient to fund your residing prices.

Learn on to search out out extra about accelerated levels, together with all the professionals and cons, and what Pupil Finance you can get.

What’s an accelerated diploma?

An accelerated diploma is an undergraduate course that lasts two years, moderately than the usual three. As such, they’re generally additionally known as ‘fast-track levels’.

The course content material on an accelerated diploma is similar to the three-year equal, and the qualification you get on the finish is identical too. The one distinction is that you just sacrifice quite a lot of your vacation – significantly throughout the summer time – to finish the course in a shorter time.

As they are a comparatively new idea, and do not essentially attraction to everybody, not all universities supply accelerated levels.

In truth, nearly all the fast-track levels within the UK are supplied by English universities. Elsewhere within the UK, they’re both solely supplied at postgraduate degree, or solely accessible for a restricted vary of vocational programs (like Legislation or Social Work).

That mentioned, for those who’re completely happy to go to college in England, you will discover accelerated levels in a complete vary of topics, supplied by unis throughout the nation.

Do you have to do an accelerated diploma?

Regardless of their attraction, fast-track levels aren’t for everybody. That will help you determine, we have put collectively a fast record of their professionals and cons.

Why an accelerated diploma might be a great choice

Listed here are just a few of the professionals of an accelerated diploma:

  • As you are solely finding out for 2 years, moderately than three, you will graduate with a smaller Pupil Mortgage to repay.
  • Assuming you begin your course straight after college or sixth kind, you will enter the world of labor earlier than your friends of the identical age. This implies you can begin incomes cash faster, and probably get a head begin on the profession ladder.
  • For those who’re not in a rush to start out the course, you possibly can take a spot yr after college and nonetheless find yourself graduating concurrently your folks.

Why an accelerated diploma could also be a foul choice

In the meantime, listed here are among the cons of an accelerated diploma:

  • As accelerated levels cram the identical quantity of labor right into a smaller interval, you will in all probability discover that you’ve got much less free time and miss out on among the social facets of college.
  • You will even have much less time to relaxation, be that within the week or while you would in any other case have had holidays.
  • Though you might make time for a part-time job, you will not have the ability to up your hours throughout what would usually be your summer time vacation.
  • For those who’re on an accelerated course, you possibly can obtain extra upkeep funding to cowl the additional weeks of examine in a yr. Nonetheless, relying on the place within the UK you are from and what your family earnings is, this additional funding could also be at a decrease charge than the remainder of your mortgage.
  • Not all elements of the UK supply Tuition Payment Loans that may cowl the complete price of an accelerated diploma.
Earlier than we run by way of the funding, keep in mind that you apply for Pupil Finance from the a part of the UK you usually stay in, not the place your college is.

Tuition Payment Loans for accelerated levels

university surrounded by bags of money

Tuition charges for accelerated levels are normally capped at £11,100 a yr, and most universities will cost this quantity. Whereas that is greater than the common price cap (£9,250 a yr), it is considerably cheaper total as you examine for simply two years, moderately than three.

England and Northern Eire each supply a particular Tuition Payment Mortgage that may cowl the associated fee in full.

Nonetheless, for those who stay in Scotland or Wales, there is not any additional tuition funding for fast-track levels. As an alternative, the utmost Tuition Payment Mortgage is £9,250 a yr, and you may must fund the remaining quantity your self both utilizing private funds or bursaries, scholarships and grants.

It is also value noting that the £11,100 tuition price cap solely applies to publicly-funded universities. Non-public unis can cost as a lot as they like, and the utmost Tuition Payment Mortgage accessible for college kids at these establishments is simply £7,400 a yr.

Whereas most unis are publicly funded, one of many largest suppliers of accelerated levels – the College of Buckingham – is non-public. Right here, annual tuition charges will be double the utmost mortgage (or extra), and also you’d must pay the remaining quantity your self.

Upkeep Loans for accelerated levels

Relying on the place within the UK you normally stay, you could possibly get additional funding for the extra weeks of examine concerned in a single yr of an accelerated diploma.

In England and Wales, the definition of a ‘longer’ course is one which includes you finding out for greater than 30 weeks and three days in a single tutorial yr. In Northern Eire, the cutoff is barely earlier, at simply 30 weeks.

Once more, in Scotland, there is not any additional funding for college kids on accelerated diploma programs.

For each week over the brink, you possibly can be entitled to some additional money. Nonetheless, whereas the quantity is calculated on a weekly foundation, the funding will are available in a lump sum as a part of your April/Could Upkeep Mortgage cost.

And notice that, no matter which a part of the UK you obtain Pupil Finance from, your customary Upkeep Mortgage entitlement will not be affected.

Lengthy Programs Loans in England

Your residing preparations Most quantity for every additional week
Dwelling together with your dad and mom £69
Away from dwelling (exterior London) £104
Away from dwelling (in London) £134
Dwelling and finding out overseas £144

The Lengthy Programs Mortgage in England is means-tested. So, just like the Upkeep Mortgage, the precise quantity you obtain will range relying in your family earnings.

In case your family earnings is £39,796 or much less, you need to obtain the utmost weekly quantity on supply for a scholar together with your residing preparations. In case your family earnings exceeds this determine, you will obtain a smaller quantity based mostly on the data you undergo Pupil Finance England.

Nonetheless, for those who already obtain the minimal Upkeep Mortgage, you will not be eligible for any additional funding. This consists of college students with the next family incomes:

  • £58,253 or extra for those who’ll be residing at dwelling whereas finding out
  • £62,311 or extra for those who’ll be residing away from and out of doors of London whereas finding out
  • £70,022 or extra for those who’ll be residing away from and in London whereas finding out.

It additionally consists of any scholar who fails to submit family earnings info as a part of their finance software.

Additionally notice that in case your course includes finding out for greater than 45 weeks of the tutorial yr, you might qualify for funding that equals the equal of 52 weeks’ value.

Prolonged years Upkeep Loans in Northern Eire

Your residing preparations Most quantity for every additional week
Dwelling together with your dad and mom £55
Away from dwelling (exterior London) £84
Away from dwelling (in London) £108
Dwelling and finding out overseas £117

For those who get your funding from Pupil Finance Northern Eire, you possibly can obtain more money to cowl the additional weeks of examine concerned in an accelerated diploma.

Crucially, this funding at all times comes within the type of a means-tested mortgage. In contrast to the traditional upkeep funding in Northern Eire, there are not any grants on supply for the additional weeks.

And, as a result of it is means-tested, you will not obtain the utmost quantity until your family earnings is under £39,796 a yr.

What’s extra, you will not be eligible for the additional weeks of funding for those who obtain a “diminished mortgage”. On this context, this is applicable to:

  • Anybody who solely receives the non-household-income-assessed portion of the Upkeep Mortgage
  • Anybody who receives a reduced-rate mortgage, normally as a result of in addition they get some type of NHS Bursary or are on a sandwich course.

Lastly, in case your course lasts for 45 weeks or extra inside any 12-month interval, you’ll obtain additional funding as for those who have been finding out for 52 weeks.

Upkeep Loans in Scotland

As we defined earlier, the Pupil Awards Company Scotland (SAAS, the Pupil Finance physique in Scotland) provides no extra funding for college kids on accelerated programs.

Which means that you will solely have the ability to apply for the usual Upkeep Mortgage (or ‘Pupil Mortgage’, because it’s recognized in Scotland) to cowl your residing prices. For many college students, this quantities to the next:

Family earnings Mortgage Bursary Whole*
£20,999 or much less £6,100 £2,000 £8,100
£21,000 to £23,999 £6,100 £1,125 £7,225
£24,000 to £33,999 £6,100 £500 £6,600
£34,000+ £5,100 £0 £5,100

These quantities assume you’re a dependent (or ‘younger’) scholar. For those who’re 25 or older, try our information to Pupil Finance for mature college students.

This funding is unlikely to be sufficient to help you all through your course, particularly for those who plan to check in London. As such, we might suggest you look into various sources of funding to complement your mortgage – significantly scholar grants.

Prolonged years Upkeep Loans in Wales

Your residing preparations Most quantity for every additional week
Dwelling together with your dad and mom £91
Away from dwelling (exterior London, together with abroad) £138
Away from dwelling (in London) £176

Pupil Finance Wales provides among the UK’s most beneficiant funding for college kids on accelerated programs.

Nonetheless, in contrast to Wales’ common upkeep help for college kids, there are not any grants accessible amongst this additional funding. As an alternative, the extra weekly help comes within the type of a mortgage.

That mentioned, the funding is not means-tested, so most college students will obtain the complete quantity.

The one exception applies to college students receiving the diminished charge of mortgage. It’s possible you’ll get a reduced-rate mortgage for those who’re receiving sure kinds of NHS bursary, or for those who’re on a full-time sandwich course.

Regardless of the motive, for those who’re receiving a diminished Upkeep Mortgage, you will not be eligible for the additional weekly funding for fast-track diploma college students.

Repaying your accelerated diploma Pupil Mortgage

piggy bank with graduate cap

College students who undertake accelerated levels repay their Pupil Loans in precisely the identical manner as everybody else.

Our devoted information to Pupil Mortgage repayments explains every little thing in additional element, however we’ll summarise the headlines for you right here.

The principle factor to notice is that Pupil Loans aren’t like different kinds of debt.

For one, you will not half with a single penny till you begin incomes greater than the reimbursement threshold. This quantity varies relying on which a part of the UK gave you your mortgage, however the precept is at all times the identical.

What’s extra, ought to your wage abruptly drop under the brink, your repayments will cease till you are as soon as extra above it – if ever.

If you’re incomes greater than the brink, you will solely ever repay 9% of your earnings above it. This implies the quantity you repay is tied to your earnings, so it tends to be fairly manageable. And, as Pupil Mortgage repayments do not have an effect on your credit score rating, they should not have a major impression in your skill to purchase a home.

Lastly, irrespective of how a lot or how little you’ve got repaid, your remaining Pupil Mortgage stability will likely be cancelled after 30 or so years.

So, regardless of the various faults with the Pupil Mortgage system within the UK, the repayments aren’t that unhealthy in any respect.

Our record of bursary and scholarship sources will assist if you’ll want to discover any additional funding.