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Independent Students

If you wish to claim Independent Student Status, then one (or more) of the following criteria must apply to you.

  • You have no living parents.

  • You have attained the age of 25 years before the start of the course.

  • You are married or in a civil partnership.

  • You have been out of full-time education for 3 years or more before the start of the course.

  • You have been looked after by the Department of Health and Social Care, within the meaning of the Children & Young Persons Act 2001, for the 12 months immediately prior to the beginning of the course.

  • You have been irreconcilably estranged from both of my parents for at least 12 months before the start of the course (You will not be able to claim irreconcilable estrangement just because you do not get on with your parents, you do not live with them, your parents do not want to give details of their income or your parents choose not to provide you with their financial details).

  • The Department may ask you to provide additional documents in order to verify your claim (e.g. a copy of your marriage certificate to verify that you are married or a copy of your passport to verify your age).

  • The income of a partner or spouse of an Independent student will be taken into account when calculating an award but the student’s parents/guardians are not classed as contributors for this purpose.

If you are an Independent student, the Department needs to verify your income details. You must submit a copy of your Isle of Man Tax Office Resident Assessment Notice to this office as soon as possible.

Academic requirements 

Even if you have been unconditionally accepted by the university that you wish to attend, you also need to meet the Department's academic requirements in order to qualify for support.


Minimum qualifications required

HND or comparable course

One GCE A-level (A2) pass at grade A-C (at least 32 UCAS points) or equivalent qualifications

University first degree or comparable course

80 UCAS points from qualifications equivalent to GCE A-level (A2) or AS-level, or an International Baccalaureate Diploma Please note that the Department of Education, Sport and Culture Student Awards will only count the Tariff points of an AS qualification if you have not completed an A level in the same subject.

Postgraduate courses


Upper second-class honours degree or Master’s degree


Upper second-class honours degree 

If you are in any doubt as to whether the course you wish to study will be supported, please contact the Student Awards Team for assistance by email at

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