SOAS University of London


SOAS Excellence Bursary


The SOAS Excellence Bursary supports students with financial need who demonstrate academic achievement and potential.

Award value:

September 2018 and September 2017 entry

£4,500 of cash bursaries over the duration of your degree

£1,500 cash bursary in first, second or third, and final year (£0 in language year abroad)

These bursaries are not be available during a student's repeat year of study.

Application process:

You will be considered automatically. You do not need to make an application but you must apply for means-tested support from your funding authority via When you make your application for student support, you must ensure you give consent for your information to be shared with us. If your parents are submitting their financial information, they must also ensure they give their consent. This will allow us to view your details on a portal at the Student Finance website. The portal will only provide the information we need to assess your entitlement to an Award.


  • You must meet or exceed academic entry criteria
  • You must be undertaking your first undergraduate degree (students who currently hold a degree or who are transferring from another Higher Education degree will not be eligible)
  • You must ordinarily be resident in England
  • Your household income must be less than £25,000 as assessed by Student Finance England (SFE)
  • You must accept SOAS' offer of a place firmly by the relevant UCAS deadline

Please note that meeting these listed criteria alone will not guarantee this award as these are limited in number. 

Priority will be given to the following groups:
  • students with experience of care
  • students from lowest participation neighbourhoods (Polar Quintile 1)
  • students with the lowest household income (students with a household income closer to £0 will be allocated in preference to £24,999 for example)
  • students who are first in their family to go to university
  • students with refugee status

'First’ means an applicant’s parents, step-parents or guardians did not attend university.  This is self-declared data which applicants include in their UCAS application form. If you are the first generation in your family to attend a higher education institution you must declare this in your UCAS application to be considered for this award.

‘Low participation neighbourhoods’ are areas identified by HEFCE using data of the participation rate of young people in higher education by ward or region.  This information is provided on an applicant’s UCAS application form. There is a map of the low participation neighbourhoods which can be found on the HEFCE website.

Notification and Payment:

We will start to send out notifications by post from November. If you have not received a letter from us by mid-January, please contact the Student Loans and Bursaries Officer:

SOAS will deposit the cash bursary of £1500 directly into the successful student's bank account as follows:

Value Payment Date
£495 28/10/2019
£495 24/02/2020
£510 22/05/2020

If you have any questions about this award then please contact the Student Loans and Bursaries Officer:

We recommend you bookmark this page as we may make further updates and clarifications.

Last update: 21 November 2019