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  • FIRST POST
    • bluenose1
    • By bluenose1 18th May 19, 9:33 AM
    • 2,118Posts
    • 3,450Thanks
    bluenose1
    Doing a degree for first time at 55 and repaying student loan.
    • #1
    • 18th May 19, 9:33 AM
    Doing a degree for first time at 55 and repaying student loan. 18th May 19 at 9:33 AM
    Left school at 18 with a couple of A Levels and have worked ever since.
    Going to retire at 55 at latest and amongst many other things musing over doing a History degree full time. Assuming I get accepted according to Student Finance calculator I would qualify for the full tuition fees being paid and a maintenance loan of £5,864 per annum.
    As I don't intend to work again I assume I would not pay this back as will not have income over £25k per annum.
    Am I missing something?
    Thanks in advance.
    Money SPENDING Expert

Page 2
    • Joey Soap
    • By Joey Soap 19th May 19, 8:18 AM
    • 202 Posts
    • 75 Thanks
    Joey Soap
    Slightly off topic but my daughter did an American Studies honours degree, four years at a Russel Group universtity. She did an academic year (year 3) in America and thoroughly enjoyed the entire experience over the four years. She has loads of friends in the USA now too.
    • bugslett
    • By bugslett 19th May 19, 9:09 AM
    • 228 Posts
    • 810 Thanks
    bugslett
    Slightly off topic but my daughter did an American Studies honours degree, four years at a Russel Group universtity. She did an academic year (year 3) in America and thoroughly enjoyed the entire experience over the four years. She has loads of friends in the USA now too.
    Originally posted by Joey Soap
    One of the lads on trucknet did American Studies with the OU, studying whilst being stuck in the cab overnight. He was enthusiastic about it and I.tending to change jobs when he qualified.

    Like others on here, I was offered places at unis at 18 but couldn't afford to take three years off. I have wondered about doing a degree, philosophy, Eng Lit would be in the running.

    However, personally speaking as someone who has retired early and would study for the pleasure not for the chance to use that knowledge in a work situation, I just could not take advantage of the system so I in effect get it for free. As for the notion of not paying council tax, well I use the services and on around 20-25k a year, I think I should pay.

    I am possibly a bit odd/stupid. I've been paying myself through PAYE instead of dividends through my working life, so I've got form in that respect. I'm not sanctimonious as I probably sound - honest - but I just find the tone of this thread a little unplesant. Maybe I should get with the programme and take as much as I can get.
    Yes I'm bugslet, I lost my original log in details and old e-mail address.
    • jackieblack
    • By jackieblack 19th May 19, 10:04 AM
    • 8,640 Posts
    • 13,896 Thanks
    jackieblack
    For me, it’s not a question of ‘taking what I can get’ but whether I could afford to do it at all! I couldn’t at 18, and maybe I still won’t be able to in my 50s, even with a student loan and no council tax - although I’m fortunate that I’ve practiced budgeting and frugal living my whole adult life, so hopefully would be better able to cope than many younger students seem to.

    Maybe I’d never repay the student loan, but neither will a lot of 18-20 year olds. And there are many young people doing degrees that will never use knowledge of their subject in any work situation.
    Last edited by jackieblack; Today at 10:28 AM.
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    • bluenose1
    • By bluenose1 19th May 19, 10:39 AM
    • 2,118 Posts
    • 3,450 Thanks
    bluenose1
    One of the lads on trucknet did American Studies with the OU, studying whilst being stuck in the cab overnight. He was enthusiastic about it and I.tending to change jobs when he qualified.

    Like others on here, I was offered places at unis at 18 but couldn't afford to take three years off. I have wondered about doing a degree, philosophy, Eng Lit would be in the running.

    However, personally speaking as someone who has retired early and would study for the pleasure not for the chance to use that knowledge in a work situation, I just could not take advantage of the system so I in effect get it for free. As for the notion of not paying council tax, well I use the services and on around 20-25k a year, I think I should pay.

    I am possibly a bit odd/stupid. I've been paying myself through PAYE instead of dividends through my working life, so I've got form in that respect. I'm not sanctimonious as I probably sound - honest - but I just find the tone of this thread a little unplesant. Maybe I should get with the programme and take as much as I can get.
    Originally posted by bugslett
    I know what you mean and fair point re the council tax. However I have got to the stage of life if I am fairly entitled to it I am going to claim it. I intend to retire at 55 after having worked 37 years, half of it part time whilst bringing up 3 kids so my pensions aren't great.
    Plus think I am disillusioned with everything such as the massive expenses MPs claim and taxes avoided by big corporations etc.
    I would love to do a degree and if I am entitled for support to do that then even better.
    Money SPENDING Expert

    • nigelbb
    • By nigelbb 19th May 19, 11:15 AM
    • 2,361 Posts
    • 3,137 Thanks
    nigelbb
    One of the lads on trucknet did American Studies with the OU, studying whilst being stuck in the cab overnight. He was enthusiastic about it and I.tending to change jobs when he qualified.

    Like others on here, I was offered places at unis at 18 but couldn't afford to take three years off. I have wondered about doing a degree, philosophy, Eng Lit would be in the running.

    However, personally speaking as someone who has retired early and would study for the pleasure not for the chance to use that knowledge in a work situation, I just could not take advantage of the system so I in effect get it for free. As for the notion of not paying council tax, well I use the services and on around 20-25k a year, I think I should pay.

    I am possibly a bit odd/stupid. I've been paying myself through PAYE instead of dividends through my working life, so I've got form in that respect. I'm not sanctimonious as I probably sound - honest - but I just find the tone of this thread a little unplesant. Maybe I should get with the programme and take as much as I can get.
    Originally posted by bugslett
    Your stance is illogical. If you had gone to university when you were 18 there would have been no tuition fees & you would have been entitled to a maintenance grant. There would have been no loan. What's the difference now taking a loan & never paying it back?
    • zagubov
    • By zagubov 19th May 19, 2:15 PM
    • 16,087 Posts
    • 133,426 Thanks
    zagubov
    Are you sure about that last point? Surely it's 4 years support for full time study, and support will be longer than that if part time?
    Originally posted by Zanderman
    If there's anywhere that says they can fund you for more than four years I've not been able to find it. I'd be happy to be proved wrong.
    There is no honour to be had in not knowing a thing that can be known - Danny Baker
    • Zanderman
    • By Zanderman 19th May 19, 4:24 PM
    • 2,124 Posts
    • 4,920 Thanks
    Zanderman
    ....However, personally speaking as someone who has retired early and would study for the pleasure not for the chance to use that knowledge in a work situation, I just could not take advantage of the system so I in effect get it for free.....
    Originally posted by bugslett
    You wouldn't be 'taking advantage' - it's the way the system was designed.

    Student loans are a political invention - not a loan in the conventional sense.

    If a graduate earns enough through their working life they'll pay it back. But if they don't earn enough they won't - and many would fall into that category. So, for some, it is in effect a 'grant' - just like the old days but with it looking over your shoulder for life. And it's a partial 'grant' for the many in between who will pay some back but not all.

    That's not them 'taking advantage' - it's how the government designed it - knowing full well that a proportion will never pay all back and some will pay none back.

    The scheme is, therefore, in effect, a grant scheme for many, in all but name. If you're retired, on a lower income, and want to take a degree you are perfectly entitled to, using this scheme.

    Don't get me wrong, I'm not suggesting it's a fair system! For those who have to pay it back it's a monstrous system as the repayments can carry on for ages. And for those who worry that when their wages go up they'll lose 9% to the loan it's a worry about advancing their careers.

    But if you know you're unlikely to hit that threshold it's not a worry - as indeed Martin Lewis often points out -, yes there's a debt after Uni - but no, you're not, necessarily, going to be asked to pay it back.

    (personally-speaking I had the advantage of grants, in the 1980s, for two Universities, but, despite that brilliant education my earnings, for most of my career [in a low-paid profession], were low compared to most, so if it had been a loan system then I would never have paid it all back even now)
    Last edited by Zanderman; Today at 4:36 PM. Reason: corrected spelling
    • Zanderman
    • By Zanderman 19th May 19, 4:34 PM
    • 2,124 Posts
    • 4,920 Thanks
    Zanderman
    If there's anywhere that says they can fund you for more than four years I've not been able to find it. I'd be happy to be proved wrong.
    Originally posted by zagubov
    The OU funding page and the Student Loans page both imply that Student Loans cover part-time courses that are more than 25% of your time.

    No mention of a 4 year limit. No mention that there isn't one either though!

    Student Loans says (from https://www.gov.uk/student-finance/who-qualifies)

    If youíre studying part-time
    Your course needs a Ďcourse intensityí of 25% or more for you to be eligible for student finance.

    Youíll be eligible for a Tuition Fee Loan if your course is in the UK and one of the following:

    a first degree, for example BA, BSc or BEd
    a Foundation Degree
    a Certificate of Higher Education
    a Diploma of Higher Education (DipHE)
    a Higher National Certificate (HNC)
    a Higher National Diploma (HND)
    an Initial Teacher Training course
    an integrated masterís degree
    Youíll be eligible for a Maintenance Loan if your course is in the UK and one of the following:

    a first degree, for example BA, BSc or BEd
    an Initial Teacher Training course (if itís degree level or above)
    an integrated masterís degree
    a Foundation Degree in dental hygiene and dental therapy
    a DipHE in dental hygiene and dental therapy or operating department practice
    They surely, from that wording, aren't suggesting that 4 years into your part-time degree they'll cut off the funding. The wording says that a degree is fundable, as long as it is over 25% intensity. that, by definition, will take more than 4 years.

    The relevant OU page is here: http://www.open.ac.uk/courses/fees-and-funding/loan-england-finance
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