Glossary / B / Bursary Office

Bursary Office

What is a bursary office?

A bursary is an office in a university, college, or school that provides financial assistance to students. The word “bursar” was first used at the University of Oxford in 1658 and it’s derived from the Latin term for purse (borse).

Historically, most universities had their own bursaries but with competition for funding increasing between institutions over recent years many have been abolished. Today they are more likely to be found within individual colleges than across whole universities; this helps them stand out as independent organizations which can offer support tailored specifically towards their student needs.

The money can be granted in various forms, such as loans, grants, and scholarships. Bursaries are usually awarded based on merit (such as academic performance) or family income level with preference given to those from low-income families. A student may apply for a bursary by filling out an application form at their school’s bursary office and providing documentation proving eligibility for the award they’re applying for—a letter from home confirming parental income levels, say; or proof of membership in certain organizations like Canada’s First Nations community.

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