Student loan performance criteria

You must meet certain criteria to maintain eligibility for a student loan or allowance. If you lose eligibility, there are steps to take to recover it.

Student loan performance criteria overview

To maintain eligibility for student loan, all students who have studied at least 192 points or 1.6EFTS* (about two years of full-time study) will need to have passed and completed at least 50 percent of their courses.

The assessment of performance includes courses of study that ended in 2009 or later. StudyLink has an online calculator to help work out your performance—and below is a rough guide to help you work out the EFTS component of your courses as 1 EFTS is the equivalent of 120 points.

Point per paperEFTS (rounded)

* Equivalent Full-time Student (EFTS) is a measure of the amount of study involved in a course or programme. Generally speaking, a full-time workload is equivalent to between 0.8 and 1.2 EFTS.

Use the StudyLink performance calculator to measure your performance for Student Loan.

What to do if you lose access to the Student Loan

1. Self-fund

You can regain access to the student loan by paying for your study yourself (self-fund) until you have passed half your attempted points. To find out how many points you need to pay yourself, subtract your passed points from your failed points.

Example: In first and second year, Mark passed 100 and failed 140. He can enrol in 40 points (140 pts minus 100 pts), and pay for them himself. If he passes all 40 points, he reaches the half-way mark (passed 140 out of 280), and then he is eligible for a student loan again.

2. Postpone your study for five years

You can wait until your previous failed study is no longer considered. This is a five-year cycle eg. for study in 2018, results from 2013–2017 will be considered.

If you are unsure about any of these issues, you can contact the Student Finance Advisers by emailing to discuss your situation.

Lifetime limit criteria

For all students with a StudyLink loan for study for any time from 1 January 2010 onwards, there will be a lifetime limit of 7 EFTS for student loans.

7 EFTS is equal to about seven or eight years of full-time study (based on a study load of between 0.8 EFTS and 1.2 EFTS per year). Part-time students use fewer EFTS each year.

Once any part of the student loan is used, such as living costs, fees or course-related costs, that loan will count towards the 7 EFTS limit.

The 7 EFTS limit may be extended in some situations (for example, when undertaking postgraduate study).

For more information, visit the StudyLink website.

Get help

Talk to the Student Finance team

Phone: 0800 04 04 04