Students from the USA

We are delighted you are considering joining UCA to study! Here, you will be able to set your creativity free, learn a wealth of transferable skills, get unique industry insight and be prepared for a successful career in the creative industries.

This page should give you all the information you need to know about applying to UCA from your country, and more about life at UCA too.

And, if you have any questions, see the Get In Touch section to call or email your country‚Äôs specialist contact.

Application information


As an international student, your qualifications will not be the same as those we usually require from UK students. Therefore, depending on your home country, our requirements will be different. 

To find out what academic and English language qualifications we need from you, just visit our dedicated equivalent qualifications page and find your home country on the list.

UCA works with a number of overseas representatives who can help you make an application to UCA. 

Overseas Representatives Contact email Website
Across the Pond - Study in Britain

Financial information for students from the USA

1. Scholarships & Financial Aid

Universities in the UK do not offer financial aid in the same way as US institutions.

Financial need is not considered at the point of application & offers/acceptance letters do not usually include a ‘financial aid package’ as you would receive from a US institution. Universities have a set tuition fee prices (see UCA’s here), which can be reduced by applying for available scholarships (see UCA’s here). Very few universities in the UK will take financial need into consideration when offering international students scholarships.

Any scholarships received will reflect in the Cost of Attendance (COA). Some institutions may offer automatic discounts/scholarships based on location. If the institution offers such discounts/scholarships they usually notify the student in their offer/acceptance letter.

The only program that a foreign school may participate in is the Title IV Direct Loan programme. This means that PELL and TEACH loans cannot be taken if you are studying with UCA.

Please notify us of any third-party scholarships or funding as soon as possible.

(Please note: This is a general guide and should be clarified with each university)

2. Deposit & Visas

UCA requires students from the USA to pay a tuition fee deposit of £2500. This is a requirement for the CAS number (Confirmation of Acceptance of Study number – you need this number from UCA to apply for your visa). However, if you are using loans to cover your tuition, we will waive this requirement upon notification that you have applied for a loan.

Please note: if you choose to live in university halls of residence, you will be required to pay the accommodation deposit of £300. This will not be waived.

You can use the hardcopy notification of your student loan for visa purposes as part of your application for your UK student visa. This certificate is issued specifically for visa application purposes and is an acceptable form of evidence of your student loan for your Student Route visa application so that you meet the requirement to prove you have sufficient funds. This is part of an arrangement between UK universities and UK Visas and Immigration.

3. Federal Direct Loans

Students commencing in the fall of 2021, should note that the earliest they can expect notification of their loan entitlement for the academic year 2021/22 is 1st June 2021.

The only program that a foreign school may participate in is the Title IV Direct Loan programme. This means that PELL and TEACH loans cannot be taken if you are studying with UCA. There are three types of Federal Loans available:

  • Direct Subsidised loans
  • Direct Unsubsidised loans
  • Direct PLUS loans (Graduate and Parent PLUS)

The Direct Subsidised Loan and Direct Unsubsidised loan usually only amount to $5500. To borrow a larger amount (up to $52,000 per year according to the 2021 CoA), you must also apply for the Parent Plus Loan. 

3.1 Eligibility

To be eligible to receive US Direct Loans you must:

  • Be a US Citizen or an eligible non-citizen
  • Have a valid US Social Security Number
  • Be registered on a full-time or part-time (at least half-time) course with us
  • Be living in the UK while studying
  • Have not borrowed over your federal loan limits or defaulted on repaying previous loans
  • If you are a male under the age of 26, have signed up for selective service or have been officially exempted from selective service
  • Not have any outstanding convictions for drug-related offences
  • If you are a current student at UCA have been assessed to have made satisfactory academic progress to continue your studies with us
  • Not be studying a course that involves any study in the US or at another institution that is not eligible to process Federal Student Aid

The University will use the information you have provided on your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to assess your eligibility for US Direct Loans.

Further information on the different types of Title IV Direct Loans can be found on the Student Aid website.

3.2 How much can I borrow?

The maximum amount that you can borrow in each academic year (depending on your eligibility and loan limits) is determined by your estimated Cost of Attendance (COA); an assessment of how much it will cost you to study for one academic year. The amount you can borrow through Direct Loans is determined by your COA and the borrowing limits set by the US Department of Education.

3.3 Calculating your Cost of Attendance

Calculate your estimated COA by completing the COA form we send to you. Your COA is calculated to include the following:

  • Tuition fees (we will deduct any scholarships that you will receive from this)
  • A set monthly amount for living expenses, including books and supplies. These are reviewed on a yearly basis
  • One return flight home
  • Any fees or charges associated with taking a Direct Loan (usually charged when the loan is paid to you)
  • Deductions representing your Expected Family Contribution (EFC)
  • Any other Estimated Financial Aid (EFA) that you will be receiving 

4. Applying for your Direct Federal Loan

4.1 Submit your FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid)

Apply online at

You will need the University for the Creative Arts school code for your application – it is G23389. If you are continuing at UCA you should complete a new FAFSA each year. 

4.2 Apply for the Parent Plus Loan

Apply online at:

4.3 Check your Student Aid Report

Once the US Department of Education has processed your FAFSA, you will receive a copy of your Student Aid Report (SAR) by email. Please review it to check it is accurate, and ensure that it includes an EFC (estimated family contribution) and the details of any previous loans. If there are issues highlighted in the ‘Comments about your information’ section at the end of the SAR, you must solve these. When your SAR is finalised, please email us at quoting your student and social security numbers to confirm and we will download and check your SAR. The US Department of Education will tell you that your school has been notified of your FAFSA but this does not actually happen for institutions outside the US.

We usually begin assessing the SARs from April. We will check that you meet all of the eligibility requirements and we will contact you as soon as possible if there is any problem.

4.4 Selective Service

If you are male you need to have signed up to Selective Service before you were 26. If you have not done this, you can do so at If you are over 26 you will need to provide us with details of your citizenship status or proof of exemption.

4.5 Complete your Cost of Attendance

From May 2021, we will begin sending a calculated cost of attendance spread sheet. Please review and amend this to show how much you wish to borrow, and then email it back to us. The yellow boxes are the only parts you need to amend, and please note that you MUST complete this in Microsoft Excel.

4.6 Complete a Master Promissory Note (MPN)

You must complete a new Direct Loan Master Promissory Note and this is required every year. Please email this to us at You will need to complete an MPN for the Stafford loan and, if applicable, a separate MPN for your Plus Loan. This can be done at

4.7 PLUS Loan Credit Check

PLUS loans are subject to credit check. This is not automatically sent to us, despite the loan application stating it is. Please make sure to send this to us or complete our credit check form.

4.8 Complete Entrance Counselling

Complete the Entrance Counselling at and email us evidence it has been completed – such as a screen print or the certificate as an attachment.

4.9 Disbursements

When we have all the required documents from you, we will originate your Federal Student Aid disbursements using the US Department of Education’s online system. When this has been approved by the Department of Education, we will send you a letter with the loan amount to be available when you have enrolled, and the disbursement dates. You will be able to use this letter as part of your visa application.

We will contact you in advance of your first disbursement to check whether you wish to change or refuse it, and to find out how much of it you wish to put to tuition fees and how much you want to be transferred to your bank account. Once you have enrolled on your course, you must inform us if you have any plans to withdraw or interrupt your studies. We will be able to advise you on how this will affect your Federal Aid payments, and what you need to do. The first disbursement cannot be made until you have completed your registration, this includes online registration and your visa checkpoint.

You can only receive your second or third disbursement once it has been confirmed by your academic department you are making Satisfactory Academic Progress.

5. Sallie Mae Student Loans

Private Loans are provided by individual lenders and not the US Government, a private loan application will need to be made directly to the lender. The application needs to be made for each academic year like Title IV Direct Loans. The StudentAid website has some information on the differences between Federal and private loans.

If you intend to apply for a private Sallie Mae loan, we will also administer this for you. You can find more information at Please contact us at to let us know when you have submitted your application so that we can check and certify it for you.

6. VA Benefits

If you have served on active duty for at least 90 days, either consecutively or over several shorter periods, since 10th September 2001 you may be eligible to receive funding through the US Department of Veterans Affairs.

UCA offers a number of fee discounts, also known as scholarships, specific to students from overseas. These discounts are available to new international students and international alumni, who have graduated within the last three years. 

To find out more about what is available, whether you are eligible, and how to apply, visit our scholarships page.

Get in touch

Our dedicated team is here to help!

If you have any questions please contact one of the team members listed below:

Georgia Brown

Senior Recruitment Manager - North America
Mobile/WhatsApp: +44 (0)7432 1127827

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