School Courses And Requirements

Tips On UK Undergraduate Admission Process

This page provides UK Undergraduate Admission Process and requirements Using Cambridge Qualifications. In this article, students who have IGCSE, Cambridge O/level and Cambridge A levels qualifications and intend to study in any university in UK will know what score is required of them.

Although, this article may also be useful for students who have equivalent international qualifications that you’ve completed already or you’re working towards now.

Each university in UK has its own way of assessing an application. Therefore, I strongly advise students to check the University website for minimum entry requirements and guides given by institutions carefully before applying.

UK Undergraduate admission system

  • The UK Centralised admission system is UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admissions Service)
  • Applications generally open 1 September – 15 January annually
  • Oxbridge, courses in medicine, dentistry and veterinary medicine / science have earlier deadline of October 15
  • Students can apply to Oxford OR Cambridge but not both

UK Undergraduate admission requirements

  1. Cambridge International AS and A Levels qualifications are recognised by universities in the UK
  2. Competitive courses require 3 good A Levels
  3. Universities will accept 3 A levels – may no longer require AS Levels
  4. IGCSE/O Level accepted as direct equivalent of UK GCSE, especially in English and Maths
  5. Medicine has highest entry requirements and the grades range from A*AA to AAA (Chemistry often required + either another A Level in science or mathematics)
  6. Some universities require an additional English language test to meet visa requirements

UK Undergraduate admission tips for Cambridge application

  • Know whether you are considered a home or an international student. This is because some courses might not be available to international students or there might be significant restrictions.
  • Some subjects are not always accepted as 1 of the 3 A Levels e.g. Thinking Skills
  • Know the specific subjects required for your course

Visit for more details.

UK Undergraduate admission application of few Universities in UK

Imperial College London

(i) 70.8% of students are home or EU and 29.2% are international

(ii) Online UCAS application Predicted grades

  • Qualifications already taken, e.g. IGCSEs/O-Levels
  • Personal statement
  • Reference
  • BMAT (Medicine & Biomedicine), MAT (Mathematics)
  • English Language, e.g. IELTS, TOEFL, CPE, IGCSE/O Level First Language English* (English as a Second language not accepted)

(iii) 15th January deadline (15th October for Medicine)

(iv) International students assessed equally to Home/EU students

(NB restricted Medicine places)


  • A Levels range from AAAb to A*A*A
  • Subjects normally specified e.g. Biomedical Engineering: A* in A Level Mathematics, A in Physics, and A in one other A Level subject, preferably Further Mathematics, Chemistry or Biology
  • A Levels most widely accepted qualification and specialised knowledge essential for Imperial courses

University of Warwick Business School

(i) Typical offer: A Level AAA

(ii) A level in the language to be studied, i.e. French, German or Spanish, or at least CEFR B2 in all four language skills

(iii) Preferred: A range of A Levels including Mathematics or a natural science, and a humanities or social science subject. However, all applications considered on an individual basis

(iv) Offers normally exclude General Studies and Critical Thinking at A or AS level

(v) Normally at least seven GCSE passes (or equivalent) grades A* or B including A in Mathematics and B in English

UK Medical Schools – Entry requirements

Kings College London

(i) AAA (including both Biology and Chemistry) and a further AS Level at minimum grade B.

(ii) If only one of Chemistry of Biology is offered at A Level, the other must be an AS-level at grade A or above.

(iii) GCSE at grade B or above in both English Language and Mathematics if not offered at A/AS level.

(iv) UKCAT admissions test by Oct 15th (registration period 1May to 22 Sept 2015)

UCL Requirements

(i) A*AA

(ii) Biology and Chemistry required, with A* in one of these subjects.

(iii) IGCSE, O-level at grade B or above in both English Language and Mathematics

(iv) Biomedical Admissions Test (BMAT) (registration by 1st October)

Cambridge IGCSE and meeting English language requirements

(1) We advise students to take all 4 skills (reading, writing, speaking and listening) – will be beneficial for their university studies

(2) For Cambridge students, this means taking one of the below:

  • IGCSE First Language English syllabus 0500 & including the optional Listening and Speaking Component
  • IGCSE English as a 2nd language syllabus 0510 or 0511: the speaking test is compulsory

(3) Grade for speaking and listening (0500) and for speaking (0510) is recorded separately on a student’s final IGCSE Certificate. This makes it clear to universities that the student has taken all 4 skills

(4) Students who require Tier 4 visas should include all 4 language skills

Teacher’s Reference When Applying For UK Undergraduate Admission

  • A teacher’s reference can make a real difference to an application
  • Usually given by a teacher at the student’s current school since can give an opinion on student’s academic performance during their Cambridge International A Level studies
  • Describe how they compare/compared with other students in their class
  • Give a brief description of the school – e.g. state/private, size, location

What the teacher needs to comment on

  • the applicant’s post-16 academic performance and their potential for success in higher education.
  • their suitability for their chosen subject/course as well as on their attitude, motivation, commitment to their studies.
  • their research and analytical skills, problem-solving skills, capacity for independent study and self-management, readiness to reflect critically and respond to review
  • their achievements, work experience, and extracurricular activities that relate to their chosen course(s)
  • any factors/personal circumstances that might affect the applicant’s performance (consent must be gained first to mention health or disabilities).

How to get a UK student visa

If you live outside the UK, you’ll need to get a Tier 4 student visa to study here – unless you’re an EEA or Swiss national. Once you’ve been offered a place on a course, the course provider will advise you on how to apply for your student visa from UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI).

Make sure you apply early enough like 3 months in advance of your course start date, it normally takes up to 15 days, but could be longer at peak times.

Few things you need to do first before you can send off your visa application.

  • Add your passport number to your UCAS application – either when you’re filling out your details, or when you’re offered a place on a course.
  • Prove your English language skills – your chosen course provider can advise you whether you need to take a UKVI approved English language test, or an alternative test or Skype interview
  • Accept an unconditional offer of a place on a course – then if your university or college has a Tier 4 Sponsor licence, they can give you Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS).
  • Apply for a Tier 4 student visa – make sure you provide all the information and documents required – including your CAS (and English language test certificate if you needed one). You’ll also need to prove you can afford to study and live in the UK

For more information on UK student visa, kindly visit

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Bolarinwa Olajire

A tutor with a demonstrated history of working in the education industry. Skilled in analytical skills. Strong education professional with a M. SC focused in condensed matter. You can follow me on Twitter by clicking on the icon below to ask questions.

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