Scotland: fee status

Last modified: 11 March 2024

This page provides explanations of the fees regulations which underpin fees status assessment in Scotland. We tell you who the Scottish Government instructs higher and further education institutions in Scotland to give a 'home' tuition fee to, via its fees regulations. The relevant fees regulations are the Education (Fees) (Scotland) Regulations 2022 (No 156), as amended. These regulations came into force on 1 August 2022 and, on that date, revoked the former set of fees regulations for Scotland (the Education (Fees) (Scotland) Regulations 2011, as amended).

In the context of fees status assessment, certain terms mean what is explained for them in 'Definitions' (at the bottom of this page) and not what you might interpret from an ‘everyday’ understanding of the words. We signpost to the 'Definitions' layer when relevant.

Categories of eligibility for HE and FE from August 2022

Last modified: 11 March 2024

The information below explains the conditions that determine which rate of tuition fee you will be charged on courses of higher education (HE) and further education (FE) in Scotland.

If you are studying in HE, you will be charged one of three levels of fee:

  • a 'home' fee for those who meet all the conditions of one (or more) categories; or
  • a ‘rest of UK’ (‘RUK’) fee – capped at a middle rate roughly equivalent to the 'home' fee charged in England. Under some (but not all) categories, students who are not eligible for a 'home' fee may instead qualify for this 'RUK' fee and institutions agree with the Scottish Government to cap this fee at a middle rate; or
  • a top-rate ‘overseas' fee for all other students. 

If you are studying in FE, we understand from the Scottish Government that there is no option to be charged a ‘rest of UK’ (‘RUK’) fee. Therefore, you will be charged either the 'home' rate or the 'overseas' rate. Find out if your course is in higher education (HE) or further education (FE).

The Scottish Government advises publicly-funded educational institutions in Scotland to determine 'home' fees eligibility using The Education (Fees) (Scotland) Regulations 2022 (No 156), as amended, ('the fees regulations'). In this section, we provide our interpretation of the categories that appear in the fees regulations. The categories appear as numbered paragraphs in the fees regulations; they start at regulation 3, and then continue in Schedule 1 paragraphs 1 to 20. We present the categories in the order in which they are presented in the fees regulations. However, please note that the numbering we use for sub-paragraphs does not always directly relate to the numbering used in the regulations.

UKCISA members can currently access a consolidated, amended version of The Education (Fees) (Scotland) Regulations 2022 (No 156) in the UKCISA manual. See Fees regulations for August 2021 onwards (you will need your UKCISA login details).

Regulation 3: 'Relevant connection with Scotland' - 'Settled'

Regulation 3: 'Relevant connection with Scotland' - 'granted leave to enter or remain' [New category for 2023]

Paragraph 1: EU nationals [and family] with 'protected rights', three years' residence in UK and Islands

Paragraph 1A: EU nationals [and family] with 'protected rights', without three years' residence in UK and Islands

Paragraph 2: Irish nationals who are settled in the UK

Paragraph 3: Family members of a relevant person of Northern Ireland

Paragraph 4: 'Person with protected rights' who is also a worker, and family members

Paragraph 5: 'Person with protected rights' who is the child of a former EEA worker

Paragraph 6: Settled in the UK and exercised a right of residence in the EEA and/or Switzerland (includes eligibility for family)

Paragraph 7: Refugees (includes eligibility for family)

Paragraph 8: Persons granted leave following on from refugee claim (includes eligibility for family)

Paragraph 9: Iraqi nationals (includes eligibility for family)

Paragraph 10: Syrian nationals (includes eligibility for family)

Paragraph 11: Afghan nationals (includes eligibility for family)

Paragraph 12: Relocated Afghan citizens (includes eligibility for family)

Paragraph 12A: Evacuated or Assisted British nationals from Afghanistan (includes eligibility for family)

Paragraph 13: Ukrainian nationals 

Paragraph 13A: United Kingdom nationals from Ukraine (includes eligibility for family)

Paragraph 14: Persons granted stateless leave (includes eligibility for family)

Paragraph 15: Persons granted discretionary leave to remain as a victim of modern slavery

Paragraph 16: Persons granted indefinite leave to remain as a victim of domestic violence or domestic abuse

Paragraph 17: Persons granted Calais leave

Paragraph 18: Persons who are young asylum seekers or children of asylum seekers

Paragraph 19: Children of Swiss nationals

Paragraph 20: Children of Turkish workers

'Rest of UK' (RUK) fee provisions for UK nationals and family members who have been living in the EEA or Switzerland, and for UK/EU nationals living in Gibraltar

Definitions and terminology

Last modified: 04 August 2023

This section explains the words and terms which occur in our information, above. These explanations should not be read in isolation but, instead, combined with the appropriate fee status category.

European Economic Area (EEA)

European Union (EU)

Family members

Ordinary residence

'Person with protected rights'

Relevant date

'Relevant person of Northern Ireland'


UK and Islands

What has been modified on this page?

Last modified: 11 March 2024

11 March 2024

For clarity purposes, across the whole page, in each category we have made amendments to the wording relating to Eligibility for 'RUK' fee.

Across many of the categories there is a test of 'ordinary residence in Scotland on the relevant date'. In a number of these categories, since 1 August 2022 we have stated an additional requirement attached to this ordinary residence test that "a student who is ordinarily resident in Scotland as a result of having moved from a part of the UK other than Scotland for the purpose of undertaking a course of education is to be considered to be ordinarily resident in the part of the UK from where they moved and not in Scotland". We have removed this wording because we have recently been made aware that the current fees regulations do not require this (even though it was a standard requirement in the former set of regulations in place until August 2022). The categories from which we have removed this wording are regulation 3, and paragraphs 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14, 15, 16 and 17. We have discussed this with the Scottish Government and made it aware of our interpretation. The Scottish Government appears to be of the view that this requirement should apply and it has advised us that it intends to review the regulations in Spring 2024. If you are a student who was charged a 'RUK' fee and you think you may have been affected by this issue in one of the categories above, or any other category, you may wish to discuss this with your institution.