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Postgraduate Study - PhD and Research Degrees

Postgraduate Doctoral Loans

Student loans are now available from the Government for UK and EU nationals. Funding for a Postgraduate Doctoral Loan is different if you normally live in Wales.

Postgraduate Doctoral Loans are open for application now.

Postgraduate Doctoral Loan explained

Key facts

How much? Up to £27,892 during a postgraduate Doctoral course starting on or after 1 August 2022. 

Who is eligible? UK national or Irish citizen, or have 'settled status' under the EU Settlement scheme or indefinite leave to remain so there are no restrictions on how long you can stay.   You mus also be studying a full, standalone Doctoral course which starts on or after 1 August 2022.  For full course and student eligibility, please check Student Finance England and

When is it available? You can apply now for course that started in either 2021/22 or 2022/23. 

When is it paid? In three instalments each year for the duration of your programme. The total amount you borrow will be paid evenly over the length of your course. 

Please note: Doctoral loans are only available for the maximum period of study. To read more about periods of study, see Degree durations.

How do I pay it back? Once you are earning over £21,000 a year, you will pay back six percent of your income each year. If you already have a Postgraduate Master’s Loan then you’ll make a combined repayment of six percent covering both postgraduate loans.

How do I apply? You can apply for a Doctoral Loan now, and can do so online or by post (PDF). If you’ve already got an account with Student Finance England, you can use this to apply for a postgraduate doctoral loan.

When is the deadline? The deadline is fairly relaxed – you have to apply within nine months of the first day of the final academic year of your doctorate. You can apply for a Postgraduate Doctoral Loan in any year of your course, but might not get the maximum loan amount if you apply after your first year.

Depending on when you start your Doctoral course during the year, there are four possible ‘first days’, which you can see in the table below. 

Course begins First day of academic year
1 August - 31 December 1 September
1 January - 31 March 1 January
1 April - 30 June 1 April
1 July - 31 July 1 July

All information adapted from Student Finance England and