There are many ways to afford tuition and help pay for other expenses even if the student is starting very soon or is already studying. For some programs, it depends on your financial situation. For other financial help, it depends on the student's grades and achievements.
Free Financial Aid
With free financial aid programs, you are given money to help pay for higher education expenses. You do not need to repay the money you receive.
Scholarships are a type of financial aid award given to students based on academic achievements (or having good grades in school), financial need, participation or interest in sports or drama, or a variety of other requirements.
Bursaries are awarded based on merit and need. The terms of bursaries differ - some are 'no ties', others require you to work for the company that awarded the bursary when you finish your studies.
There are loan programs that come from the government or from banks. You will need to pay back the money you are given. Learn more about these loans.
Students apply for loans to help pay for their higher education expenses.
Additional Ways to Make Studying Affordable
Financial aid, education loans, and scholarships do help families and students afford to pay for college. Find out more about these programs from your high school guidance counselor, local library, or the Financial Aid office at your chosen institution.
But there are also other ways to make studying more affordable, especially for families who aren't comfortable taking out a loan. These ideas are things that students could to do in order to afford higher education.
Stay at home
Unless you have to travel in order to do the course you want, stay with family while you are studying to cut the cost of residence fees. If you do need to live away from home, try to find options that are cheaper than residence, such as shared accommodation, or staying with a family member in that town.
Work while you study
By working part-time while studying, you can help pay for some of your expenses. You can study part-time at an institution, or do a correspondence course (distance learning). Many HE institutions have special 'student job-shops' on campus that help students to find part-time jobs. You can also sign up with 'Find a Student' online.
Meet with a counselor at your institution's financial aid office
Your institution may be able to offer additional financial aid programs. Make sure to make an appointment with a financial aid counselor to find out what other options might be available.