The effect of postgraduate loans



Loan take-up was greatest among students aged 25 and under on entry to the course. However, the increase in transition rates is similar across age groups.

Analysis has shown that students who are young when entering their first degree course were slightly more likely than older students to realise their intentions to study at postgraduate level six months after graduation.

Entrants to eligible courses

There have been changes in eligible courses' entrants by age group. The largest increase, 37 per cent between 2015-16 and 2016-17, has been among students aged 25 and under. The increase for students over 25 has been 25 per cent.

The composition of the postgraduate student population has consequently changed, with 47 per cent of students being 25 and under in 2016-17, while slightly less than 45 per cent in 2015-16.


One-year transition rates

Considering undergraduate to postgraduate transition rates, the increase is around three percentage points for both age groups.


Loan take-up

The proportion of students eligible for a loan who took one out varies by age. Among eligible students who were 25 and under on entry, 71 per cent took out a loan. This proportion decreases to 53 per cent for students aged 26 and over on entry.

Realisation of intentions

The increase in qualifiers who were certain to study at postgraduate level at the moment of graduation - and actually did that immediately afterwards - was higher among students aged 26 and over. The proportion of respondents realising their intention increased by 7 percentage points between 2014-15 and 2015-16 for students aged 26 and over, and by 5 percentage points for younger students.

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