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Ways to pay for your course

If you’re interested in studying a part-time course, we understand the cost can be a barrier but there is lots of help available. If you can’t find what you’re looking for on this page or need further advice, speak to our friendly Information Team! You can reach them via email on info@barnsley.ac.uk or call them on 01226 216123.

The majority of our Level 1 and Level 2 courses may be free for you to study if you are in receipt of certain benefits or are employed but earning below the threshold. See our Paying for your Course page for more information. You can find out if there is funding available for a particular course through the ‘How much does this course cost’ information box on each course page.

There is funding available for a number of Level 3 courses through the National Skills Fund. The National Skills Fund investment is a government-funded initiative to help adults train and gain valuable skills to improve their job prospects. Through this scheme a number of Level 3 courses will be available to study for free for any adult aged 19 or over who doesn’t already hold a Level 3 qualification. In addition to this, any adult in England earning under the National Living Wage (£21,255 a year) will also be able to study these courses for free, no matter what previous level of qualification they have completed.

These courses could be ideal if you want to re-train, gain some new qualifications or boost your work prospects. National Skills Funded courses may be available in the following areas:

  • Accounting
  • Business
  • Childcare
  • Computing
  • Construction
  • Counselling
  • Engineering
  • Public Services

There are some courses at Level 3 that have funding for learners who already have a Level 3 qualification but are either employed and earn under £21,255 a year, or are in receipt of certain benefits. You can speak to our Information Unit to learn more about these courses.

For other courses at Level 3, or if you do not qualify for funding, then you may be able to get an Advanced Learner Loan to cover your course fees. An Advanced Learner Loan means you won’t have to pay fees upfront for your course, instead you will pay them back through the tax system when you have completed your course and earn over the threshold. If you take out an Advanced Learner Loan to study an Access to Higher Education (HE) course, the loan will be written off if you go on to complete a HE course, like a degree.

You can find out more details about Advanced Learner Loans on the Gov.UK website.


Fees for selected part-time courses can be waived for students on low incomes, or those who get certain benefits. See our Funding page for further information.

If it’s a HE course you’re interested in, such as a HNC/D or degree, then you can access financial support via the Student Loan Company. Student Loans are only repaid once you’ve completed your course and earn above the income threshold (currently £25,000 per year). Loans can be taken out for tuition fees and for living expenses. See www.gov.uk/student-finance for more details.

No. We understand some people want to study a course but can’t commit to studying on campus. We offer a range of courses that can be studied online and at your own pace. Take a look at the full list of courses that are available to study in the comfort of your own home.

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