Adult Courses Fees Policy

At Bridgwater & Taunton College, we want to encourage people to learn and develop to the best of their ability, and understand that financial concerns can sometimes prevent them from doing so. We have many FREE courses available, as well as loans and payment plans, to support learners with their studies and training.

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Course Fees

The course fees can be viewed on the course information pages of the website, showing the fees payable depending on age. The fees shown are payable per year if the course duration is for more than one year**. Where courses include an exam fee it is for one sitting only. If students need to re-take an exam, then they will have to pay an additional fee. All fees shown apply to people aged 16 or over, who have been resident in the UK or in another country in the EEA for the last three years or more.

For some courses there are additional fees which are payable later or at enrolment and cover extra costs associated with the course, such as materials, trips etc. These will be discussed with you.

If your total fee is £325 or more, including any additional fees, you may choose to pay by instalments – see ‘Spreading the Cost’ further down this page. The full fee or, where applicable, the first instalment, plus a £25 administration fee, is payable upon enrolment. You will need to pay this before you can start the course.

Please note that for courses lasting more than one year, the fees shown represent the first year’s fee only. Further fees are payable in subsequent years**.

**Unless marked with a . See 19+ Advanced Learner Loans.

Free Courses

For courses marked with a  the College does not charge any compulsory fees if you are:

  • aged 19 years or over and in receipt of Job Seekers’ Allowance (including National Insurance contributions only) or Employment Support Allowance (Work Related Activity Group - WRAG)
  • aged 19 years or over and in receipt of Universal Credit and earning less than £330 per month and in the Work Related Requirements Group, the Work Preparation Group or the Work Focused Interview Group
  • aged 19 years or over and earning less than £330 per month, and in receipt of any state benefit not listed above and believe the planned learning will improve your employment prospects and the College considers this would satisfy a local labour need
  • have been released on Temporary Licence (RoTL).

For courses marked on the website with a F2 or F3, the College does not charge any compulsory fees if you are:

  • aged 19 – 23, have not already achieved a legal entitlement at Level 2 or 3 and are studying to achieve a legal entitlement qualification at Level 2 or Level 3 (indicated by F2 or F3 respectively), or you do not currently hold a legal entitlement qualification at Level 2 or above and are studying at Entry Level or Level 1 in order to progress to a legal entitlement qualification at Level 2
  • aged 19+ and studying a Functional Skills or GCSE in Maths or English and you have not already gained a GCSE grade A* - C in the subject.

If you are not sure whether or not you have already achieved a legal entitlement qualification at Level 2 or 3, please call our Information and Guidance team on 01278 441234.

19+ Advanced Learner Loans

If you are aged 19+ and the course fee for your age group is marked with a  you are eligible to apply for an Advanced Learner Loan. Alternatively you can pay the fee yourself. The amount shown is the loan you would have to take out to pay for the total duration of the course. Please contact the College for further information.

Help with your Fees

If you don’t qualify for a free course or an Advanced Learner Loan, and you are on a low income or are in receipt of other benefits such as Income Support, Council Tax Benefit, Housing Benefit or Employment Support Allowance (non-WRAG), you may be able to receive support from our Learner Support Fund to cover some or all of your fees. Contact our Student Support team on 01278 441233 for more information. Fees for overseas students may vary from those shown on our website.

Refunds

All course fees and additional fees are non-returnable from three weeks prior to the course start date, unless it is subsequently cancelled by the College or is oversubscribed. If any course is cancelled or already full, you will receive a full refund.

Spreading the Cost

If you do not wish to apply for an Advanced Learner Loan, the College offers the following payment option. Payment by instalments is available, but only if you are paying your own fees, are attending a course of 24 weeks or more and the total fee payable at enrolment is more than £325, inclusive of additional fees. The first instalment, payable at enrolment, will be £300 or 50% of the fee, whichever is greater, plus an administration charge of £25. The remaining amount is payable in two equal instalments. You will also be required to complete an instalment agreement form available from our Information and Guidance team or the Finance office.  

Are you receiving Job Seekers’ Allowance or Employment Support Allowance (WRAG) or Universal Credit (and earn less than £330 per month and are in the Work Related Requirements Group, the Work Preparation Group or the Work Focused Interview Group)?

If you are in receipt of one of these benefits you will not be charged any additional compulsory fees for courses where there is a  marked alongside. You must sign a declaration to say you are in receipt of one of these benefits at the time of enrolment.

Are you in receipt of another state benefit and currently earning less than £330 per month?

You will not be charged any additional compulsory fees where the course is marked with a  if it is considered that this course will help you to find employment to meet local labour market needs.

Are you on a low income or in receipt of Income Support, Council Tax Benefit, Housing Benefit or Employment Support Allowance (non-WRAG)?

If you have a low income or are in receipt of any of these benefits, you may be able to receive help from our Learner Support Fund towards your course fees for courses where there is a  marked alongside. You should apply to the College for Learner Support Funds as soon as possible. In exceptional cases these funds may also support travel costs. Demand is very high and we may not be able to meet the needs of everyone who applies, so you should aim to submit your application as early as possible. Student Support can help you with this; call 01278 441233 or email studentsupport@bridgwater.ac.uk

Childcare Fund

This helps students with up to 90% of the cost of childcare for courses shown with a . Apply through Student Support on 01278 441233 or email studentsupport@bridgwater.ac.uk to check availability. To reserve a place for your child at the Bridgwater campus Childcare Centre, call 01278 441270.

Legal Entitlement Qualifications at Level 2 and Level 3

If you are aged 19 - 23 and enrolling on a legal entitlement qualification at Level 2 or Level 3, and have not previously achieved a full qualification at this level or higher, you will not be charged any course or additional compulsory fees for courses marked with F2 or F3. You would also be eligible if you do not currently hold a full Level 2 qualification or above and are studying at Entry Level or Level 1 in order to progress to Level 2. Speak to our Information and Guidance team on 01278 441234 for advice on completing your application form, or email info@bridgwater.ac.uk

Advanced Learner Loan Bursary

If you are applying for an Advanced Learner Loan, you may be eligible to apply for help with the costs of accommodation, travel, optional course materials and equipment as well as additional learning support and childcare. This funding is extremely limited, and priority will be given to students with special educational needs. Contact Student Support on 01278 441233 for details or email studentsupport@bridgwater.ac.uk

University Level

If you are applying through UCAS, you can apply for loans and grants via Student Finance England at www.gov.uk/student-finance

Contact Student Support on 01278 441233 for details or email studentsupport@bridgwater.ac.uk for more information.

Student Discounts

Students are automatically entitled to free membership of the Student Union. The optional purchase of a £12 NUS Extra card will entitle you to discounts on hundreds of products and services throughout the UK. For more information contact a member of our Student Union on 01278 441341.