Advanced Learner Loans

Why wait to change your career?

If you are aged 24 or over or are 19-23 and already have a Level 3 qualification (eg. A Levels) you can apply for an Advanced Learner Loan to fund your Level 3 or Level 4 course.

Advanced Learner Loans have been introduced by the Government to help you pay for your tuition fees. You only repay your loan when you are earning over £25,725 a year. Repayments are small.

An Advanced Learner Loan could help you:

  • Enter higher education
  • Gain a place on a UK Top 10 degree at University Centre at Blackburn College
  • Get a graduate job
  • Become one of 9 out of 10 graduates who are in work or further study*.

Thinking of an Access to Higher Education Diploma?

If you are studying an Access to Higher Education Diploma, Student Finance England will ‘write off’ any outstanding Advanced Learner Loan balances you owe once you complete a higher education course. This means you do not have to repay your loan. The higher education course must be eligible for student finance. See eligibility information here.

Why get an Advanced Learner Loan?

  • You will have to pay nothing up front
  • You don’t pay back a penny until your income is over £25,725 a year
  • If you study an Access to Higher Education Diploma, Student Finance England will 'write off' any balances you owe once you complete an eligible higher education course
  • Loan eligibility doesn’t depend on your income and there are no credit checks
  • You can get an Advanced Learner Loan even if you have had one previously
  • Gain a place on a UK Top 10 Lancaster University awarded degree at University Centre at Blackburn College.

Who can apply?

To qualify for a loan, you need to:

  • Be aged 24 or over at the start of your course
  • Be aged 19-23 and have already studied a Level 3 course (eg. A-Levels)
  • Have been a resident in the UK for the past 3 years

You can still apply for a loan if you are currently claiming benefits or are unemployed.

You can also apply for an Advanced Learner Loan if you have already taken out an Advanced Learner Loan before and you can also take out two Advanced Learner Loans at the same time. For example, you wish to study two courses at the same time to suit your career aspirations (eg. Photography and Hair and Beauty, for Fashion Photography).

How do I apply?

Once your place is confirmed and we have issued you a Learning & Funding Information Letter by the College you need to visit and follow the How to Claim instructions.

Our Student Finance team can help explain more about the Advanced Learner Loan and answer any questions you may have. Call 01254 29 29 29 or email

Hear why the Advanced Learner Loan was appealing to Katrina.

Hear why Geoff would recommend the Advanced Learner Loan

Meet Emily - Level 3 Interior Design 

undefinedKeen designer Emily didn't think there was anyway she could afford to go back into education until she dropped into The Hub at Blackburn College and had a confidential meeting with Dianne, one of the finance support advisors. Dianne recommended Emily apply for the Advanced Learner Loan, the £500 Support Allowance and 90% contribution towards childcare.

"Getting back into education was so much easier than I thought. Without the Advanced Learner Loan, Support Allowance and £2,639 per year I received for childcare, there is no way I would be where I am today. I can now concentrate on progressing to University to continue my dream of being a set designer for TV and catwalks".


Meet Chris - Level 3 Interactive Media & Software

undefinedPart time carer and father of two Chris always wanted to go back to college, but didn't think it was possible as the fees were too high. It wasn't until he called the finance team at The Hub and enquired about course fees that he realised an Advanced Learner Loan would solve his problem.

"The Hub gave me advice about the loan and all the extra financial support available. It is really rewarding knowing I am making the right steps into a future career without having to pay anything at all. In fact I was amazed at how much extra financial support I was entitled to".