How much does it cost to do a Masters degree?

Postgraduate Master's Loan

Students living in the UK can apply for a Postgraduate Master's Loan. This funding can help with your course fees and/or living costs while studying for a master's degree, such as an MA or MSc. It is a fixed non means tested amount payable over the duration of your course.


Funding for postgraduate loans is different depending on where in the UK you normally live. Moving somewhere to study does not count as normally living there.


If you live in England, your application will be assessed by Student Finance England. Find the loan eligibility criteria on the?


If you live in Wales, your application will be assessed by Student Finance Wales. Find the loan eligibility criteria on the Student Finance Wales website.

Northern Ireland

If you live in Northern Ireland, you can check your eligibility on the Student Finance NI website.


The Student Awards Agency for Scotland will ordinarily only fund students from Scotland to study at an institution in Scotland. In exceptional circumstances, they may fund study outside Scotland if the course is not available in Scotland. Further information is available on the Student Awards Agency for Scotland website.

Important information about previous study

If you have studied for a postgraduate degree before you will not be eligible for further funding unless you are successful in showing Compelling Personal Reasons to Student Finance to discount this previous year of entitlement used.

If you would like to apply for Compelling Personal Reasons, our team can support you please fill in our enquiry form here.

If you were previously enrolled on one the below courses (even if you did not finish the course or changed course at some point in the program) you will not be eligible for a Postgraduate Loan.

·      pre-registration PG master’s healthcare courses

·      Initial Teacher Training (ITT) courses – only the ones leading to the award of a master’s qualification

·      Master of Architecture courses

·      integrated master’s courses

If you can show Compelling Personal Reasons to Student Finance to show why you did not complete the course you may be able to discount a year of SFE eligibility and qualify for a Postgraduate Loan.

Living costs

Funding a master’s degree via student finance is different as there isn't a tuition/maintenance component to the loan as there is with undergraduate degrees.  

There is a PG Masters loan from the Government where Government can be given up to £12,167 if your course starts on or after 1 August 2023.

This would be paid to you in 3 instalments if you are studying full time and you would apply via the government website.

Therefore, it is very important that you have worked out how you will finance the degree and your living costs, prior to starting the degree.

The rising cost of living in the UK has made coming to university increasingly expensive. It is important to think carefully about whether you can afford to pay for university as once you arrive you can find yourself in debt trying to keep up with your living costs and there are serious consequences if you cannot pay your course fees.

Save the Student publishes some data here on average student living costs per month. The British Council publishes some information on living costs to expect for internation students here.

However, be mindful with all data from surveys it is an average of a large group of people and based on people reporting their own costs so it may not be relevant to your specific financial needs. Also, expenses such as rent in Exeter are considerably higher than average rent prices across the UK.  

The other finance advice pages on this website include key information about this, including budgeting, support available to specific groups of students, and other advice and sources of help for students facing financial difficulties. Please note Widening Participation support is not usually available to students studying at Postgraduate level.

Other ways of paying Masters tuition fees

There are also Professional and Career Development loans, where the Government pays the interest whilst you are studying.

There are also private loans - however these can have higher interest rates or earlier repayment - you can shop around online to see what options there are.  

The University also this page about funding a Masters that you might find beneficial to look at.

It is worth checking with Admissions to see if there are any scholarships that you would automatically be awarded for either academic excellence or for being an Exeter undergraduate student.

We hope these pages will help you to find the information you need. If you read through this information and require further support, please fill in our enquiry form.