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UK Undergraduate Entry Requirements

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Entry requirements

Universities and colleges set their own entry requirements for higher education courses, and these vary widely depending on the subject, the specific course, and the course provider. They set the entry requirements for each course to ensure you have the right skills and knowledge to successfully complete the course. These include:

  • ualifications, subjects, and exam grades – usually A levels, Advanced Highers or equivalent-level qualifications. Most courses will also expect you to have some pre-16 qualifications, such as GCSE English and maths, or their equivalents
  • your suitability – course descriptions often mention skills, interests, or experience it’s good to have, so look out for these details because applications can be quite competitive
  • an admissions test – less common, but check the course requirements to see if you’ll need to sit one. Some tests are held the year before the course start date
  • an interview – if you’re invited to an interview, we’ll let you know via Track after you’ve applied, but it might be worth doing some early preparation or putting together a portfolio if required
  • further requirements – it’s possible there may be health, financial, or Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) or Protecting Vulnerable Groups (PVG) checks, which check if you have a criminal record. This information will be set out in the course details, and we provide tips and guides to help you with these requirements
  • You might need to take a specific English language test to get a place on a course.
  • If you need a student visa – anyone living outside the UK and not an EEA or Swiss national – you might need to take an English language test approved by UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI). If so, and if you get a place on a course, your university or college will let you know what to do, and will help with your visa application.

Mature students (over 21)

As a mature student, universities and colleges may give you accreditation for life or work experience if you don’t meet the qualification or subject requirements:

  • Accreditation of prior learning (APL) is essentially credit awarded for wider learning, evidenced from self-directed study, work, or training.
  • Accreditation prior experiential learning (APEL) is an extension of APL that includes assessed learning gained from life and work experience.

Working towards entry requirements

The qualifications required for courses are often stated as UK qualifications – for example, A levels. Don’t worry – you can also use the equivalent qualifications you’ve already completed, or you’re currently working towards.

When searching for courses, don’t worry if the entry requirements don’t specify your qualifications – many course providers accept alternative, equivalent qualifications. Check the course provider’s website or contact them to find out.

What if I don’t have the right qualifications?

Don’t worry – if you do not have these qualifications but can show you have relevant experience, skills, and aptitudes, you may still be considered. Just ask your chosen universities and colleges whether you can meet the entry requirements in a different way.

You could get accreditation for life and work experience:

  • Accreditation of prior learning (APL) is essentially credit awarded for wider learning evidenced from the self-directed study, work, or training.
  • Accreditation prior experiential learning (APEL) is an extension of APL that includes assessed learning gained from life and work experience.

 

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