Parents and supporters

How we spend our money

As a University, most of our income comes directly from our students and their tuition fees. That’s why we like to tell you how our money comes in and more importantly, where we spent it.

Our accounts explained

How do people pay for a degree?

Most student will not have to pay for their degrees upfront. A range of loans and grants are available, including tuition fee loans, maintenance loans, maintenance grants, university bursaries/scholarships, NHS bursaries (for students on NHS-funded diploma or degree courses) and special support grants.

Why are tuition fees changing?

Since September 2012, most courses at Birmingham City University have received no government funding. That’s why we and other universities have been forced to raise our tuition fees.

What about student already on the old fees system?

The new tuition fees have so far not affected student who started before September 2012 under the old fees system. The government will confirm its support package for new or continuing students in future years in due course.

Is it advisable to get into debt?

We believe that the lifelong value of higher education far outweighs any short-term costs. Taking on debt is never an easy decision, but student loans have been designed to be manageable – graduate have to earn above a minimum amount before they have to start repaying and then they only pay a percentage of their income which is over that threshold. If at any point the graduate is unemployed or takes a career break, the payments are halted, and the loan is written off after 30 years.

The Council of Mortgage Lenders has advised that a student loan is ‘very unlikely’ to have a material impact on an individual’s ability to get a mortgage.

Are there options to study part-time?

Yes, nearly all our courses can be studied part-time. We’ve provided flexible options that allow students to work as they study.

From 2012, part-time students can have access to government loans if they are studying a part-time course equivalent to at least 25 per cent of a full-time course.

Does Birmingham City University employ its students?

Yes! As well as helping our students find part-time work with our Careers and Job Prospects Service, we hire our students for a range of temporary and casual jobs around the University using our dedicated employment agancy, OpportUNity - Student Jobs on Campus. This gives students valuable experience of the recruitment and selection process, as well as the opportunity to develop their skills in 22 key areas identified by the University in consultation with employers.

Students can be paid to become Student Ambassadors, who assist on Open Days and school visits. We also hire Student Mentors to help new students settle in.

My son or daughter has never managed a budget before...

Student Services run workshops on budgeting and applying for funding throughout the year - as well as providing drop-in advice and a range of brochures on money matters. The following sample budget table will give you more of an idea of what university costs:

Sample budget table

Example weekly budgetIncomings
Accommodation £85.00 Student Loan £100
Travel £3.00 Job £90.40*
Food and toiletries £30.00 Bursary £26.25**
Gas/electric/water £15.00
Laundry £3.00
TV licence £3.00
Contents insurance £1.00
Mobile phone £5.00
Clothes £12.00
Socialising £30.00
Books and stationery £8.00

*based on 16 hours at £6.50 per hour

**based on a full £525 bursary