Thinking of studying in the UK but don’t know where to begin? No need to worry. We’re here to help you out! If you’d like to know how to apply to a UK university, the requirements to study in the UK, and how to get into one of the world-class universities, you’ve landed on the right page.
Why study in the UK?
If you are thinking about whether studying in the UK is worth it, we’re here to explain why studying in the UK might be the best option for you. There are over 162 Universities in the UK, including several renowned universities like the University of Oxford and the University of Cambridge. Over 600,000 flew from around the world to the United Kingdom to gain a world-class education and excel in their careers. Further, we will also cover how to apply to a UK university.
1. High-Quality Education
2. International students have warmly welcomed
3. Scholarships for students
4. Gain international exposure
5. High Employability Rate
6. Learn to live independently
7. Short courses, along with undergraduate courses
8. Access to world-class research through the university
9. Unmatched student experience
10. Learn from the best-skilled teachers
Picking the right course
Before getting the answer to how to apply to a UK University, you need to figure out the course you want to pursue. To find suitable undergraduate and short-term courses, you can refer to our guide to the different types of degrees, determine which degree or subject you are more inclined to, and select your course accordingly. We’ve also got a step-by-step guide to help make the tedious process of choosing your major a lot easier for you. For the postgraduate course, you will most likely be picking a course that’s linked to your undergrad course. Consider your skill set, prospective careers, and employment opportunities before finalising and applying to your selected course.
How to Apply to a UK University
There are two main ways you can go about applying to a UK university. If you plan on studying in Great Britain, you can either apply through UCAS or directly apply to a UK university. The exact steps of your application process and the documents you will need to submit will vary according to whether you’re applying for an undergraduate or postgraduate course.
What is UCAS?
The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service, a non-profit organisation aiding students applying to universities in the UK, is a trusted method of admission by several colleges. On their website, you can find resources for applying to UK universities, including a list of university courses, and an application portal for prospective students to use.
Applying for a UK Undergraduate Course
When applying to a UK university, most universities accept applications through UCAS. Some universities also take applications directly through the university’s website. Make sure to check your chosen university’s website before you start applying.
Most universities in the United Kingdom accept students' applications through UCAS. For this, you will need to register yourself online on UCAS. Registering and applying via the UCAS website is mandatory only for UCAS universities. You will need to create your account, fill in the details, select your courses, write a personal statement, and submit your UK university application.
Step 1: Go to the UCAS website
Step 2: Register yourself with UCAS
Step 3: Fill in the personal details asked
Step 4: Complete the sign-up by verifying your email address
Step 5: log in to UCAS after your UCAS ID gets created
Step 6: Add your education history
Step 7: Add your employment history
Step 8: Select your courses (You can select up to five courses)
Step 9: Write a personal statement
Step 10: Submit your application
Step 11: Get a reference and pay your application fee
Via Direct Application
Now the next question is how to apply to a UK University directly? There are several universities where you can apply using the university’s website directly. The exact steps of the UK university application process will likely change from university to university. There will be direct applications from the universities for UG courses. Students can fill out the application form from the university's official website. Once you’ve completed filling out your UK university application, the next steps are paying the application fee and submitting the application.
Applying for a UK Postgraduate Course
Every postgraduate course in the UK has different requirements. If you wish to study in the UK for the postgraduate qualification, you must first check the eligibility criteria for your particular postgraduate course and then apply for the same. Although UCAS does not play a major role in applying to UK universities for masters, UCAS Postgraduate does help students apply to a selected group of UK universities and colleges through their app, Myriad, which has plenty of resources for students to use.
If you’re planning on applying to a UK university directly, you can follow these steps:
Step 1: Go to the website of the university where you wish to apply for a master's.
Step 2: Create your ID
Step 3: Complete your application
Step 4: Upload all your supporting documents
Step 5: Demonstrate your English level
Step 6: Add your references (Mandatory 2 references)
What You Need When Applying to UK Universities
When applying to a UK university, you will need to provide a series of documents. If you’re applying for a UK university’s postgraduate program, you might have to provide additional documents, such as a research proposal, copies of your graduate degree and portfolio for certain courses.
These are the general documents you will need to submit along with your UK university application:
1. Birth certificate
2. Passport, national identification card
3. Reference letters if required
4. Evidence of English competency
5. Copies of degree/diploma certificates
6. Academic transcripts
7. Graduate applicants may also be required to submit a research proposal
Proof of Language Proficiency
When applying to UK universities, you are presented with a plethora of degrees you can choose from. Since these are all taught in English, you will be required to deliver proof of being well-versed with the English language unless you come from an English-speaking country. Some of the language tests that are commonly accepted in UK university applications are:
1. IELTS Academic
2. TOEFL iBT
3. C1 Advanced
4. PTE Academic
Deadlines for UK University Applications
An important thing to keep in mind when applying to universities in the UK is the deadlines that you must follow throughout the application process. Here are some significant deadlines to take note of when applying to a UK university:
Mid-October: UK University Applications for Dentistry, Medicine, and Veterinary Medicine courses
Mid-January: Applications for UK universities by EU/EEA students through UCAS
End of June: UK University Applications by international students from a non-EU/EEA country
August: UCAS Clearing - Universities look for late university applicants who still want to start their degree studies in the current academic year who can fill their remaining spots.
After submitting your UK University Application
Congratulations! You’ve gone through all the steps of applying to universities in the UK. What’s next? After you’ve submitted your UK university application, it gets passed on to your selected colleges and universities. Once they’ve reviewed and considered your application, they might call you for an audition or an interview, after which they decide whether or not they’ll make you an offer. You can get different types of offers from your chosen universities and colleges. Once you receive an offer, you must reply according to their deadlines. If your offer depends on your exam results, you might have to wait for these before you send in your UK university application.
UK scholarships for International students
When studying abroad, you might face a hurdle when it comes to funding your studies abroad. Students often opt to work part-time or look for internships to financially support their studies. However, those aren’t the only means they can use to do so. International students are privileged as they get more than 1510 scholarships for international students at the top UK universities. The scholarships provide an average stipend of £2000 monthly, which covers health insurance, travel allowance, tuition fees and accommodation charges.
Following are some scholarships available:
1. Chevening Scholarship UK (Fully Funded)
2. The Gates Cambridge Scholarship
3. Imperial College London PhD Scholarship
4. The University of Bristol Think Big Scholarship
5. The University of East Anglia Scholarship
6. Rotary Peace Fellowship Program
7. Goldsmiths International Response Scholarship
After Getting into a UK University
All set to study abroad? Hold up. Do you have all your documents ready? All international students need a student visa to study in the UK. You can only apply for one after you’ve received an acceptance letter from your chosen university or college. Make sure to do this as soon as you’ve successfully applied to UK universities and received your acceptance letter as it can take about 8 weeks for your application to get processed. Learn more about how to the UK student visa in our comprehensive guide.
As the United Kingdom has a considerably lower cost of living than several other popular study destinations for international students. However, one common problem students face when studying abroad is finding student accommodation. We help with just that! Providing luxurious student housing that is close to your university for an affordable price, amber makes sure you find the ideal student home for your journey studying abroad! We offer incredible rooms in some of the best student cities in the UK, including London, Birmingham, and Leeds. Read our respective student guides to find the best and most affordable stays near your university.
We hope our guide helped you answer the big question of how to apply to a UK University? Cast aside your worries about funding your education, as there are plenty of UK scholarships available that might apply to you. Once you’re done applying to UK universities, applying for a student visa, and finding your new home, all that’s left is packing your bags and preparing to study at your dream university in the United Kingdom.