Costs of College


Full time courses are usually free to all students aged 16 - 18 years.

International students – contact our international office on 01384 363 422 or email:

Examination Fees

These are normally free if you are under 19 years of age or under 20 years of age and on the second year of your course. If you are re-taking a subject (or subjects) then you will be asked to pay.

Other Costs

Some courses require students to provide their own equipment, uniform and materials or attend educational trips or residentials. Information about course related costs is available from student services, for more details call 01384 363 363.

There are two 16-18 Bursaries:

  1. The Guaranteed Bursary – this is specifically for students who have been defined as ‘vulnerable students’.

  2. The Discretionary Bursary / free college meals – this is for students who are not defined as ‘vulnerable students’.

The Guaranteed Bursary

You can only apply for an Enhanced Bursary of up to £1200 if you are in one of the groups that have been defined by the Government as being a ‘vulnerable group of students’ and meet the eligibility criteria. This includes young people who are living apart from their parents and are:

  • Looked after (in care) or have recently left care (Care Order in force)

  • In receipt of Income Support (or Universal Credit) in their own right (not their parents)

  • Disabled and in receipt of both Employment & Support Allowance (Universal Credit) and Disability Living Allowance (Personal Independence Payments) in their own right (not their parents)

You will need to provide up to date evidence to confirm receipt of your Benefit, or a recent letter from Social Services confirming your care status.

Funding is released in weekly payments – paid directly into your bank account. You will therefore need to provide your bank account details. Your payments are based on weekly attendance being at least 85% and is monitored via registers linked to your course, we also monitor good progress and behaviour so payments may be withheld if standards are not met.

The Discretionary Bursary Travel Support

All Dudley College students are provided with a first term bus pass on the day they enrol. Passes can be used straight away, however, where students are issued a Child Pass a 16/18 Centro card MUST be applied for within the first week of starting college in accordance with Network West Midlands bus company regulations. The card ensures students are able to continue to travel unlimited on all Travel West Midlands buses without risk of being fined by bus inspectors. It is the students responsibly to meet the costs of the 16/18 Centro card (£10) Students must have a 16/18 Centro card by the 30th September.

Second and third term bus passes are only issued to students who return a fully completed bursary form. Application forms for travel are issued to students on the day they enrol, however subsequent forms can be obtained via Student Services.

Free College Meals

Students aged between 16 – 18 may be eligible for free college meals if they or their parent/carer receives one of the following benefits;

  • Job Seekers Allowance (Income Based)
  • Income Support
  • Child Tax Credit (but not Working Tax Credit) provided annual income, assessed by the Inland Revenue does not exceed £16,190 (please note: This amount is subject to change in April every year)
  • Employment Support Allowance (Income Related)
  • Guarantee Element of State Pension Credit
  • Support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
  • Working Tax Credit run-on - paid for 4 weeks after you stop qualifying for Working Tax Credit
  • During the initial roll out of the benefit, Universal Credit

19-25 year olds who are subject to a Learning Difficulty Assessment (LDA) OR Education Health Care Plan (EHC Plan) may also be eligible for free college meals.

Application forms are issued to students on the day they enrol, however subsequent forms can be obtained via Student Services.

Successful applicants will receive £2.41 per day (credited to their student card) to spend in the college food outlets and coffee shops.

Am I eligible for a Bursary?

To be eligible you must:

  • be 16 or over and under 19 on 31st August 2017
  • be enrolled to a full time course or traineeship
  • have ‘home’ student status or have been granted full ‘refugee’ or ‘asylum seeker’ status (British Citizens normally have ‘home student’ status)
  • have been ‘ordinarily resident in the UK, EU or EEA continuously for the last 3 years before the start of your course, with ‘settled status’ which means having indefinite leave to enter or remain (ILE/ILR)

What happens next?

  • Applications for an Enhanced Bursary will normally be processed within 10 working days.
  • Applications for Free College Meals are processed within 10 working days students will receive a text message confirming eligibility
  • Applications for term 2 and 3 bus passes are processed during the first term
  • No awards will be made to you until you are fully enrolled on your course.
  • If your application is not successful you will be notified by letter. You will then need to decide if you are able to enrol to your course without financial support from the Fund. Please contact the Student Support Team for further details

Childcare - care to learn

Learners aged under 20 needing help with childcare may be eligible for help with costs. More information is available from or call 0300 303 8610.

Learners who are 20 years of age or above may make an application for support with childcare costs to the Learner Support Fund, contact the Student Finance team for more information. Call 01384 363 555 or email

For more details and advice call 01384 363 377