Payment of Tuition Fees and Charges
The information detailed below has been revised for students enrolling at the College.
- Payment of Tuition Fees
Tuition fees are payable in full at the time of enrolment. “Tuition fees” can comprise course fees, registration fees or any other charge relating to the course. Payment is accepted by cash, cheque, direct debit or credit card (Visa, Mastercard).
- Payment of Fees by Direct Debit
Students with a UK bank account that facilitates direct debit can arrange for fees to be paid in instalments if they are enrolling on a course(s) of 16 weeks duration or more and the total cost is greater than £200. Students will have to pay a minimum of 25% of the total fee at time of enrolment, followed by three consecutive monthly equal payments by direct debit. Fully completed Direct Debit Forms must be provided at time of enrolment.
- Payment by Student Loan Company or Employer
If your fees are to be paid by the Student Loan Company (SLC) or by a sponsor such as your employer, please ensure that all the information is available to enable us to raise the appropriate invoices and to allow your sponsor to make payment on your behalf. You must present a letter from your SLC or your employer at time of enrolment where possible. It is your personal responsibility to ensure that your fees are paid.
- Late Payment
If you become aware that you payment will be late, you must contact the Finance Department (located in the Millfield Building, Building 1, Level 2) to explain your situation. If you are in genuine difficulty with payment, an authorised member of the College’s Finance Department will in exceptional circumstances agree a payment plan with you. If you default, you will be contacted within two weeks and asked to make an immediate payment by another method. If this payment fails, sanctions listed in the section 8 will be applied.
- Difficulty with Payment
If you are experiencing difficulties in paying your tuition fees you should seek help at the earliest possible opportunity. Initially you should approach staff in the College’s Finance Department. You may also wish to speak to the Student Finance Office or staff in our Students’ Union to find out more information about support or help available including the possibility of Hardship funding, the eligibility criteria regarding this and how to apply.
Belfast Metropolitan College will be sympathetic and assist where we possibly can. However, in order to maintain the quality of teaching and activities for all of our students, the College must act to recover all outstanding debt.
- Refund Policy/Early Withdrawal from a Course
The College policy is that all tuition fees are paid in full and are not refundable. The exceptions to this are as follows:
1. A course/session is cancelled by the College. Where the cancellation of a course takes place, students will be offered either a place on a suitable alternative course or a full refund.
2. Where a student has not attended a course and has provided written notification to the College at least 5 working days before the course commences.
3. If the time, day or evening meeting of the class has been changed and the student is unable to continue attending because of these changes, a refund will be issued if written notification is received within 20 working days of the change.
4. Students on specified Higher Education Courses (year 1) and International students on Full Time Further Education courses.
Other refund/cancellation applications shall be considered only in exceptional circumstances by a member of the College Directorate or designated authority (Head of Finance).
If an applicant has made one or more attendances, no refund/cancellation may be given, except in circumstances as listed in sections 3 or 4. However, where a refund has been refused it may be possible to transfer the tuition fee paid to another programme.
All applications for refunds / deferrals must be in writing to the Finance department. Applications may be supported by the Business Services Unit Manager or Curriculum Area Manager but only a member of the College Directorate or Head of Finance have the authority to authorise a refund or deferral of fees.
Where a refund has been authorised, payment originally made by credit or debit cards will be refunded by cheque within 20 working days. Where a deferral has been authorised, the student will be issued with a letter to bring with them to enrolment at an agreed future date.
- Payment of Tuition Fees by Student Loan Company
Please note that you have been granted a tuition fee loan from the Student Loan Company, but withdraw before completing your course, the Student Loan Company will not pay your tuition fees in full. In these circumstances, you will be liable for any unpaid amount and expected to repay this outstanding balance to the College.
- Sanctions against Debtors
If you owe outstanding tuition fees i.e. you are a debtor to the College, any or all of the following sanctions will be applied:
- Immediate withdrawal of library and reprographics privileges;
- You will not be entitled to receive tuition i.e. you will be terminated from the course with immediate effect;
- You will not be entered for examinations;
- You will not have your assessment marks forwarded to the examining body;
- You will not be allowed to enter the examination room to sit your examinations;
- Your examination results will be withheld;
- Your examination certificates will be withheld;
- You will not be eligible to attend the College’s Graduation Ceremony.
- You will not be able to progress to second or third year of your course.
- Student Debt from Previous Years
If you have a debt outstanding (part or full fees) from a previous year, you will not be allowed to enrol for a course in the new academic year. If an arrangement is agreed with the College and you are enrolled in the current year with debt outstanding (part or full fees) from a previous year, the College will set off any payments received in the current year against your outstanding debt i.e. the most recent payments will go against the oldest debt . You will be required to pay your outstanding balance from the previous year and the current year tuition fees. Should you not pay outstanding and the current year fees, the sanctions outlined in section 8 above will be applied.
- Reinstatement on Payment of Full Tuition Fees
If you have been excluded from the College because you have not paid your fees, you may be reinstated if you pay in full the outstanding tuition fees before the end of the academic year. However, if you are consequently behind with your studies, you may have to repeat parts of the programme, thereby incurring further fees. These fees will be payable by you.
- Student Status
The fees for the course(s) which you will enrol on will be classified as either home or international. Please note that confirmation of eligibility may be sought before enrolling or during the course. Appropriate fees must be paid accordingly. If you are unsure of the residency requirements, please refer to the criteria laid down by the Department for the Economy within their circular FE 14/12.
- Appeals Process
If you are unhappy about any matter relating to fee payments you should, in the first instance, contact the Finance Department. If the matter remains unresolved or not resolved to your satisfaction, you may bring a complaint forward under the College’s Complaints Procedure.
Click here to view the Belfast Met Higher Education Access Agreement
Contact Accounts Receivable Section
Building 1 – Level 2
Belfast BT1 1HS
Tel: 028 9026 5468
For details relating to Student Finance please visit the Student Funding page.
Funding is available for Part-time courses on www.studentfinanceni.co.uk