Further and Higher Education financial support - changes to residency criteria: consultation

A consultation on proposed changes to the residency conditions that enable Further and Higher Education students to access financial support in order to undertake Further and Higher Education.


1. Further education (FE) is a term to describe courses undertaken at a college under Higher National (HN) level i.e., SCQF level 6 and below, National Certificate courses, Access courses, National Qualifications (NQ) or Scottish Vocational Qualifications (SVQ).

2. Higher Education is a term used to describe SCQF level 7 courses and above i.e., Higher National Certificate (HNC) and Higher National Diploma (HND) courses at college and degree level courses undertaken at university.

3. Means-tested

4. Level of living cost support (bursaries/ loan) that the student is entitled to is dependent on their household income (excl. Paramedic, Nursing and Midwifery students, Care Experienced and Estranged students). Free tuition is paid in the form of a tuition fee grant directly to the college/ university/ private provider of Higher Education. Scottish students studying elsewhere in the UK and those studying at Postgraduate level are entitled to a tuition fee loan. Students studying at a private provider of HE in Scotland are provided with a grant of £1,205 per year; however, the fees charged by these companies may be higher.

5. Ordinary residence is not defined in the legislation but has an establishment meaning in case law as a person living in a place lawfully, voluntarily and for a settled purpose as part of their day to day life, whether for a short or long time. A person moving to Scotland purely for educational purposes would not be deemed as being ordinarily resident in that country. Schedule 2 of the 2007 Regulations set out a number of rules which applied in determining whether a person was to be treated as being, or having been, ordinarily resident in a place at a particular point in time.

6. This section of the Immigration Act states that references to a person being settled in the United Kingdom are references to that person being ordinarily resident in the United Kingdom without being subject to any time restriction for remaining in the UK.

7. The Education (Fees) (Scotland) Regulations 2011

8. The Education (Student Loans for Tuition Fees) (Scotland) Regulations 2006

9. The Education (Student Loans) (Scotland) Regulations 2007

10. The Nursing and Midwifery Student Allowances (Scotland) Regulations 2007

11. The Education Authority Bursaries (Scotland) Regulations 2007

12. The Education Maintenance Allowances (Scotland) Regulations 2007

13. Treated as a home student i.e., Scottish domiciled student. The fees for Scottish domiciled students undertaking an honours or ordinary degree course are capped at £1,820 by the Student Fees Specification (Scotland) Order 2011.

14. Relevant date in relation to a course, means for a course stating in the period

15. 1 August to 31 December, the relevant date is 1 August

16. 1 January to 31 March, the relevant date is 1 January

17. 1 April to 30 June, the relevant date is 1 April

18. 1 July to 31 July, the relevant date is 1 July

19. Limited leave to remain refers to the status of UK visa holders who have been approved to enter the UK and remain here until their visa expires. Whilst holders of certain visa types will be expected to eventually return to their home country, some categories of limited leave may lead to settled status in the UK. Settled status (e.g., in the form of British nationality or indefinite leave to remain) gives the holder permission to stay in the UK on a permanent basis.

20. Claim asylum in the UK: Overview - GOV.UK (

21. Living in Limbo: A decade of delays in the UK asylum system (2021) Refugee Council UK-Asylum-system-July-2021.pdf">Living-in-Limbo-A-decade-of-delays-in-the-UK-Asylum-system-July-2021.pdf (

22. Periods of residence in the UK or Scotland for education purposes are disregarded in calculating periods of ordinary residence, by virtue of schedule 3 of the 2022 Regulations.

23. "Relevant date" is defined in regulation 2(1) of the Education (Fees) (Scotland) Regulations 2022.

24. Paragraph 8 of schedule 1 of the 2022 Regulations.



Back to top