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The student grant is the main source of financial help available from the Irish State for students in full-time Post Leaving Certificate Courses (PLCs) and full-time Higher Education undergraduate courses. For more information, please see below. For eligible students, the grant is there to help with the various costs of participating in further or higher education. Students on part-time courses, access or foundation courses (in higher education institutions) and short courses are not eligible to apply for a student grant.

Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI) is the single awarding authority for grant applications.

Student grants provide financial support to eligible students. There are two elements to the student grant-a maintenance grant and a fees grant. A maintenance grant is a contribution towards your living costs etc.


A fee grant can cover:

  • All or part of the Tuition Fee (if needed)
  • All or part of the Student Contribution Fee
  • Costs of essential field trips (if needed)

If you have qualified for a maintenance grant, you will generally qualify for a fees grant. You must complete a Student Grant Application Form to assess your eligibility. Student grants are ‘means tested’. There are different levels of Higher Education Grant (HEG) support. Applicants must be entering an approved full-time course in an approved institution in addition to meeting the necessary residency and nationality or immigration status requirements. The student grant application system is an online application system.

Back to Education Allowance (BTEA) is a scheme for unemployed people, lone parents and people with disabilities who are getting certain payments from the Department of Social Protection. The allowance can be paid to people who wish to take up a third level course.

BTEA is not unemployment payment. Participants get a standard rate of payment which is not means tested. If you are signing for unemployment credits or submitting medical certificates for illness credits, you may apply to take part in the scheme. However, the BTEA is not payable if the student is in receipt of either the Higher Education Grant (SUSI/Local Authority) or VEC scheme.

Please note that the above information is always subject to change. For further information please visit: www.studentfinance.ie

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