Appendix C: Building the evidence base: YouGov research
The YouGov research was commissioned to assess whether further and higher education students in Scotland – in particular poorer and more vulnerable students – receive fair and effective financial support. The research was used by the Board in arriving at its recommendations.
The YouGov survey was open for 25 days, from 9 February to 6 March 2017. Over 3,500 further and higher education students responded, providing statistically significant empirical evidence.
Four in ten students said financial support was poor or very poor in meeting their needs
Seven in ten students have to supplement their financial support in other ways. The majority do part-time work or receive financial help from family and/or friends.
27% of lowest income students did not have the right information to help them apply for financial support.
13% of respondents do not claim financial support because they are not aware that any support is available.
Half of students are unaware of services in college or university which could help with money management or budgeting.
Half of students who claim financial support are very concerned about accumulating debt.
14% top-up their finances with credit cards (9%) or other types of loans (5%).
Students place the greatest value on receiving their support at the right time.
Reasons for not claiming financial support
What should be done to make advice more useful?
Around half of students who claim financial support are very concerned about accumulating debt as a result of claiming that support
Only 54% of students who claim financial support say the process was straightforward
When forced to choose, the vast majority of students prefer to have money in their pocket now, rather than reducing the amount of debt they have.