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MBA Loans

MBA student loansWhen it comes to funding your Masters of Business Administration (MBA program) in the UK, you will tend to find that this qualification is generally onsidered the same as any other masters-level course fand eligible for the same loans and funding options. This is useful for those students who needs some help funding their MBA studies as it means that MBA students can access all of the Government funding opportunities open to other masters students.

An MBA is a prestigious qualification that is highly sought after by business employers and can be competitive to get onto. Due to the high demand of MBA programs, and the excpertise of the academics involved, the tuition fees are often higher than other masters level courses at the same institution which makes access to MBA loans even more essential.

In fact, MBA students may need more than one source of funding to make it through their course without getting too stressed about their budget. So, let's take a look at some of the MBA loans and funding options availlabe to students in the UK.


Government masters/MBA Loans in England

Which students are eligible?

Only students who have not borrowed money from any UK Government for a masters level course even if you did not complete it and do not have a masters level qualification already are eligible for a loan. You must also not have any outstanding payments to the Student Loans Company, but the loan is not based on your credit rating. Students must be normally resident in England for three years and have either EU settled or pre-settled status or a permanent right to remain or are a UK citizen. Only students who are under the age of 60 when their course starts can access government funding in England.

Is the value linked to course fees?

No the value of the MBA loan is not linked to the course fees, whatever the MBA tuition fees are, the total available to borrow is £11,222. This may or may not cover all of your tuition fees and you will have living costs and other expenses to cover in addition to this.

Who should you apply to?

In England, students should apply to Student Finance England either online or through a form.

What are the application deadlines?

Students must apply within nine months of the first day of their course. Ideally, you should apply as soon as you know you have a confirmed placed before any tuition fee payments are due.

What about the repayments?

Depending on how much you earn after you graduate you will begin the repayments in the April after you complete your MBA. Most MBA graduates will start paying their loan back at this time, but the threshold is currently around £21,000, but it does vary depending on when you took your loan out. Payments are calculated and made through the PAYE tax system or during the self-assessment tax process before any other deductions are made.

Government masters/MBA loans in Scotland

Which students are eligible?

Only students who have not gained a masters level qualification in any other subject area are eligible for a Government loan in Scotland. You must be usually resident in Scotland if you are a UK or EU citizen or have permanent right to remain in the UK. International students may qualify if they have certain refugee statuses and are normally resident in Scotland.

Is the value linked to course fees?

Again, like England, the amount you can borrow is not related to the tuition fees. The total amount available for full-time students is £10,000 and this is split between £5,500 for the tuition fees and £4,500 for living expenses (maintenance loan). If you are studying part-time, then you qualify for the tuition fee loan, as do those students who are over 60 years old at the start of the course. However, students who are over 60 years old or who are studying part-time do not qualify for the maintenance loan of £4,500.

Who should you apply to?

Students apply to the Student Awards Agency Scotland (SAAS) and if you have applied in recent years you will use your existing log in. Students who are studying after a significant break from their studies will have to create a new account.

What are the application deadlines

Any funding application must be made by the 31st of March of that academic year. If you are starting your MBA in September of 2021, for example, then you must apply by the 31st of March 2022. It is a good idea to get your application in as early as possible and applications for student loans usually open in the June before the September start date.

What about the repayments?

The repayments are made at 9% of any income over the threshold of £19,390 and this is paid through the tax system, as it is in England. Although the Scottish Government intends to raise this threshold to £25,000 by April 2021.

Government masters/MBA loans in Wales

Which students are eligible?

The eligibility requirements for an Government masters/MBA loan are the same as in England, so you must not have a masters level qualification and be under 60 years old on the first day of your course. You must also be normally resident in Wales studying a course in a UK-based university.

Is the value linked to course fees?

Just like England and Scotland, the amount you receive is not linked to the cost of the course. Unlike England and Scotland however, in Wales there is a means-tested grant that is available to students whose household income falls below a certain level. For students whose household income is below £18,370 then they can access a grant of up to £6,885 and a loan of up to £10,604. For those who have a household income above £59,200 or do not wish to be accessed then the grant is £1,000 and the loan is up to £16,489. For students with household income between these two limits, then the grant and loan available is somewhere between those two options. Household income includes your parent's income if you live with them, or any partner’s income.

Who should you apply to?

To apply for a masters/MBA Government loan in Wales you should apply to Student Finance Wales and you will be familiar with this process if you were an undergraduate student with the online application form. Contact them directly if you have difficultly applying online for alternative arrangements.

What are the application deadlines?

Applicants should make efforts to apply in plenty of time for the masters/MBA loan on wales, as those students who apply late may only receive the minimum loan and grants available. The deadline in Wales is nine months after the start of your MBA course and you should apply as early as possible.

What about the repayments?

The debt is cancelled if you are disabled or ill and rendered not able to work. Otherwise, it is just the same as England and is paid at 6% of any income earned over the threshold, which is usually achieved by the April after graduation for most MBA students.

Government masters/MBA loans in Northern Ireland

Which students are eligible?

This is similar to Scotland where you can be over the age of 60 when you start your course and still apply for the loan, as it is for tuition fees only, but you must be normally resident in Northern Ireland or the Republic of Ireland. Students and can be studying their MBA program either part time or full time, but they must not already have a masters level qualification.

Is the value linked to course fees?

Just like England, Scotland and Wales, the loan amount available in Northern Ireland is not linked to the course fees. The total amount available is £5,500 and this is for tuition fees only. It is paid directly to the university.

Who should you apply to?

To apply for a Government loan for your MBA in Northern Ireland you must contact Student Finance Northern Ireland where you will find the relevant forms to complete.

What are the application deadlines?

You should apply as early as you can. Student Finance Northern Ireland publicise when their loan applications open on their website and you should apply within nine months of your course starting.

What about the repayments?

The repayments are similar to the repayments in Scotland, which begin when the applicant earns over £19,390. Students pay any 9% of any income earned over this threshold through the tax systems in the same way as students in England, Scotland and Wales do.

Can you combine a Government loan with other loans?

Yes you can combine your Government loan with other loans – in fact to cover the costs of your MBA program you may find that this is necessary – but be aware that there are some bursaries and scholarships that exclude you from borrowing from the UK Government. These are usually because they cover most of your funding needs and are from a Governmental department, such as an NHS Bursary. You can borrow more money from private or commercial financial institutions if you have borrowed money from the Government.

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MBA-specific private loans

Some private student loan providers offer loans that are tailored to the needs of MBA students. Some good examples of this are Lendwise and Prodigy Finance. These private loans companies are focused on students, which means they have terms and conditions that are specifically designed for students, such as very low or even no repayments until after graduation. Lendwise will work with most MBA students and don’t need a loan guarantor, although they will require a credit check. There are some private student loan providers that work all over the world, such as Prodigy Finance, and this is a great option for international MBA students who may want to study or work in more than one country. Their funding options are linked to over 700 institutions around the world so check their website to se if they work with a business school that interests you. Another private loan option for MBA students is Future Finance. Again this private loan provider only works with specific universities, so you will need to check both with your university or business school and the loan provider that they work together.

MBA loans from Prodigy Finance

Here are the details of Prodigy Finance loans available to MBA students from 150 different countries..

Prodigy Finance

MBA loans from Lendwise

Here are the terms and details for Lendwise loans for MBA students worth up to £100,000. 


Commercial bank loans for MBA students

Many traditional financial institutions will offer personal loans to some MBA students. These are most likely to be offered to those with a good credit rating and who are studying on a part-time bases, and thus working whilst studying their MBA. This would make them a better option for banks when it comes to making repayments. Unlike student loan providers, commercial bank loans repayments are likely to begin immediately after the loan has been issued.

Employer sponsorship for MBA students

MBA qualifications are highly valued by many employers, and those students who are already employed in a relevant field may find that their employer is keen to help fund their MBA studies. If this is the case you should carefully consider what your employer is offering before agreeing to anything. Some employers will offer an MBA loan that you will pay back to them directly out of your salary. Others may offer to pay at least part of the MBA tuition fees for you. This will almost certainly mean that you will have to agree to continue to work for them for a certain amount of time, often for two or three years, but it could be more. If you break the terms of your MBA loan agreement, then you will have to pay back the tuition fees you have borrowed or been paid for by your employer.

Ask Postgrad

Here we have compiled answers to frequently asked questions about UK MBA loans. If you still have any unanswered questions about MBA loans please email us and we will do our best to help.

Do MBA courses qualify for a UK Government masters loan?

Yes – MBA courses do qualify for UK Government masters loans as long as the student meets all the eligibility requirements and hasn’t previously taken out a masters loan.

Are UK Government MBA loans means-tested?

No – all that matters is that you and your MBA course are eligible for the loan, your income and savings do not affect your eligibility.

Can I apply for a UK Government masters loan if I’ve lived outside the UK in the last three years?  

No – to apply for a loan as a UK student you must have lived in the UK for three years prior to your MBA course. You can have travelled from the UK for holidays or periods of temporary absence during these three years, but you shouldn’t have become ordinarily resident in another country.

Will my credit history be checked?  

Your personal credit rating and existing debts won’t matter for UK Government masters loans unless you are in arrears with the Student Loans Company. Your credit history will usually be checked with private funding companies like Prodigy Finance and Lendwise.

Can I get an MBA loan whilst working?

Yes – you can have a job during your MBA studies and still access UK Government masters student finance. You will also be able to apply for a private loan from companies like Prodigy Finance and Lendwise if you are studying your MBA whilst working.

Can I apply for a second UK Government MBA loan?  

No – you can’t apply for a second MBA loan if you have already had one for a previous masters course.

Can I get a UK Government masters/MBA loan if I already have a masters degree?

No – UK Government masters loans are only available to people who do not have existing masters-level qualifications (or higher).

Can I apply for a UK Government masters/MBA loan if I already have a Postgraduate Certificate or Postgraduate Diploma?  

Yes – you can apply for a loan for an MBA degree if you already have a PG qualification below masters level, such as a PGCert or PGDip.

Can I apply for a UK Government masters/MBA loan if I already have a PGCE?

Yes – you can still apply for an MBA loan if you already have a PGCE.

Can I get a UK Government masters/MBA loan if I already have a PhD?

No – you can’t apply for a UK Government loan for your MBA if you already hold a PhD (or other doctorate), they are only available if you don’t already have existing qualifications at masters level or higher.

Will I still receive Disabled Students’ Allowance if I have a masters/MBA loan?  

Yes – payments and eligibility for Disabled Students’ Allowance (DSA) are separate from postgraduate loans.

When will I have to start making my MBA loan repayments?

Your loan repayments will depend on what home nation or private company you get your loan from. In most cases – unless you get an MBA loan from a bank – MBA loan repayments will start after you graduate from your MBA program.

Disclaimer: Prodigy Finance and Lendwise are two of many potential funding options for postgraduate students. Other student funding options are available; research all your options thoroughly before making a commitment. Please be aware that Postgrad Solutions Ltd receives a commission from both parties for any successful loan applications taken out by and users. Postgrad Solutions accepts no responsibility for your choice of loan and does not endorse or support Prodigy Finance or Lendwise. Prodigy Finance Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, and entered on the Financial Services Register under firm registration number 612713. Lendwise Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority under firm registration number 782496.


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