Academic Manual


Section 3: Admissions and Selection

Published for 2022-23

3.1 Equal Opportunities3.7 Assessment Templates
3.2  Authority to Admit Students3.8 Interviewing
3.3 Making an Application to Study at UCL3.9 Application Decisions
3.4 Accuracy of Applicant Information3.10 Appeal of Entry Decisions
3.5 Plagiarism in Undergraduate Personal Statements3.11 Applicant Behaviour
3.6 Revising UCAS Applications Following Submission 

3.1 Equal Opportunities

1.UCL is firmly committed to promoting equal opportunity. UCL's Equal Opportunities policy in respect of student recruitment and admissions is as follows:
2.In the recruitment and selection of students the only consideration must be that the individual meets, or is likely to meet, the requirements of the programme or course. These requirements being met, no applicant will be discriminated against on the basis of their gender, race, colour, ethnic origin, nationality (within current legislation), disability, sexual orientation, marital status, caring or parental responsibilities, age, or beliefs on any matters such as religion and politics.
3.The above policy must be adhered to in all matters concerning student recruitment and admissions. UCL is committed to a programme of action to ensure that its policy is implemented and monitored at an organisational and individual level. Each department has a Departmental Equal Opportunities Liaison Officer who disseminates information on good practice and training.

3.2 Authority to Admit Students

1.UCL Statutes vest with the Provost the power to admit as a student to UCL anyone having the qualifications required for admission as stipulated in UCL Regulations. The Statutes further grant the Provost the power to delegate his power to admit students to any Officer of UCL or other person or body as he may think fit. The arrangements for the admission of students as outlined in this and other sections of the Academic Manual present the current position as regards the delegation of the Provost’s power to admit students. The Provost reserves the right, at any time, to delegate the power to admit students to other Officers of UCL, persons or bodies deemed suitable by him should any particular circumstances require it.

3.3 Making an Application to Study at UCL

3.3.1 Undergraduate Applications

1.All full-time undergraduate applications to study at UCL, except for the Intercalated BSc, affiliate, and Medical students transferring from Oxford, must be submitted through UCAS and not directly to UCL. Applicants should complete their UCAS submission by the deadlines specified by UCAS.
 Further guidance
1.Regardless of where applicants are applying from, they must submit their UCAS application by the dates published by UCAS.
2.Applications made after the deadline cannot be guaranteed equal consideration by UCL.
3.Applicants for Medicine, Fine Art and Law programmes should see the additional criteria for special admissions by reference to the Prospectus for the intended year of entry. Applicants for Integrated BSc degrees should reference the UCL iBSc webpages.
4.Applications for part-time study should be made directly to UCL, via Admissions in Student & Registry Services.

3.3.2 Taught Postgraduate Applications

1.Applications for taught postgraduate programmes are made directly to UCL, with the exception of programmes listed on the Prospective Students website.
 Further guidance
1.There are two options for applications that are made directly to UCL: 
 i)Apply online
 ii)Downloadable Application Form
2.There is a standard application fee of £90 for online applications made directly to UCL and £115 for a hard copy application. Higher application fees apply to some programmes.
3.For hard copy applications the information on the Disability and Ethnic Origin Monitoring form is recorded for monitoring purposes, but not submitted to the admissions selector.
4.For further information see the Prospective Students website.
 PGT Application Deadlines 
1.The Friday of the last week in July is UCL’s general deadline for the receipt of applications for taught postgraduate programmes, however earlier programme specific deadlines may apply.
2.For programmes starting at times other than September, different deadlines may apply.
 Further guidance
1.For further information see the Programme Specific Application Deadlines on the Prospective Students website.
2.Registration and enrolment must be completed by the deadlines outlined in Chapter 3, Section 1.2: Enrolment and Re-enrolment.

3.3.3 Applications for Deferred Entry

 Undergraduate Applicants
1.UCL will consider applications for deferred entry from undergraduate applicants intending to spend a pre-university year in a constructive activity.
 Taught Postgraudate Applicants
2.UCL will not accept applications for deferred entry to taught postgraduate programmes. Applicants must apply in the admissions cycle for which they seek entry.

However, once an offer of admission has been made, applicants may to seek to defer the place to the following year. Agreement to defer is considered on a case-by-case basis and must meet one of the following criteria:

  • The serious illness of the offer holder or the serious illness of a parent, guardian, partner or child of the offer holder.
  • The death of a parent, guardian, partner or child of the offer holder.
  • The need to take parental or adoption leave during the next 12 months.
  • Where the offer holder is directly and severely affected by a natural or human-made disaster (i.e., war, earthquakes or flooding).
  • The offer holder has been awarded a UCL scholarship (including UCL partnership agreements and Faculty awards); or a full scholarship (tuition fee and maintenance support) from a recognised funding body - for study in the following academic year. (A ‘scholarship’ does not include student loans. The UCL Student Funding office can confirm the standing of a funding body or partnership as required). 

Request approved or not by Admissions or the admitting department/division

4.Applicants holding an offer of admission may only apply for deferral for one year of entry. Applicants wishing to take a further year prior to admittance will be required to re-apply for admission and be considered in competition with other applicants.
 Further guidance
1.Undergraduate applicants should state their reasons for wishing to defer entry on their UCAS application and they will then be considered a year ahead of the normal application timetable.
2.All undergraduate applicants considering applying for deferred entry are advised to check with Admissions in Student & Registry Services about the acceptability of deferred entry application for the degree programme for which they are applying. 
3.The Slade School of Fine Art does not consider applications for deferred entry.
4.Further information about deferred entry is available on the Prospective Students website.

3.3.4 Applications for Part-Time Study

 Undergraduate Applicants
1.Applications for undergraduate admission on a part-time basis will only be considered for a small number of undergraduate degree programmes. At UCL undergraduate degree programmes are mostly taught during the day. 
 Further guidance
1.All applicants considering applying for part-time study are advised to refer to the Prospectus or contact Admissions in Student & Registry Services about the availability of this option for the degree programme for which they are applying.
2.Applications for admission on a part-time basis should be submitted directly to UCL using the appropriate part-time application form.
 Taught Postgraduate Applicants
3.Applications for taught postgraduate admission on a part-time basis will be considered for programmes that offer a part time or modular/flexible option.

3.3.5 Applicants with Disabilities

1.Applicants who have a disability should inform UCL of this on their application. This will ensure that any special requirements can be put in place.
 Further guidance
1.Applicants with disabilities should contact the Disability, Mental Health and Wellbeing team in Student Support and Wellbeing (SSW) if they have any general queries about facilities at UCL before submitting their application.
2.UCL endeavours to ensure equal access to all facilities and to make reasonable adjustments to UCL buildings if required when and where possible.

3.3.6 Applicants under the Age of 18

1.UCL will consider for admission to its undergraduate programmes applicants who will reach the age of 18 during or after their expected period of attendance. If a young applicant is offered a place, UCL has procedures to support / safeguard young applicants and young students and the arrangements prescribed will be put in place prior to them enrolling at UCL as a ‘young student’.
2.Applicants that are under 18 at enrolment must have the written consent of their parent/guardian to study at UCL, provide two emergency contacts and also have a nominated local guardian living in the Greater London area.
3.In considering such applications Departments must adhere to the UCL Children and Vulnerable Adults Safeguarding Policy for Applicants and Current Students.

3.3.7 Affiliate Applicants (Students Registered at Other Higher Education Institutions)

1.Affiliate students are students registered at other Higher Education Institutions.
2.Signed agreements between UCL and participating JYA, Exchange or Erasmus institutions must be in place before an offer is made. 
3.The regulations covering the registration of affiliate students at UCL are located in Chapter 3: Registration Framework for Taught Programmes.
4.Further information and guidance for affiliate student applications is available from Admissions in Student & Registry Services.
 Undergraduate Affiliate Applications
5.Undergraduate affiliate applicants must be students registered at other Higher Education Institutions.
6.Undergraduate affiliate applicants should have completed at least two years’ study at university and be fully enrolled at their home institution by the time they come to UCL.
7.Undergraduate affiliate applicants are expected to present an average of no less than 2.2 or equivalent in their current study. 
8.During their period of affiliation, affiliate students do not qualify for a UCL Degree.
 Further guidance
 i)In this context an undergraduate affiliate student is a student from another university who has accepted an offer by UCL to enrol on an undergraduate affiliate programme and register on modules that are academically assessed.
 ii)Undergraduate affiliate students usually study on a full-time basis and can register to study for an academic year or, if appropriate, for the term or terms in which the modules they are undertaking are offered.
 iii)Departments/Divisions may, at their discretion, accept an undergraduate affiliate student who has not completed at least two year’s study at a university.
 Taught Postgraduate Affiliate Applicants
9.Applicants registered for taught postgraduate level qualifications in other Higher Education Institutions may apply to study at UCL for academic credits. 
10.Taught postgraduate affiliate applicants are required to meet the graduate entry requirements detailed in Section 3.2 Authority to Admit Students.
11.Taught postgraduate affiliate applicants should be enrolled on a programme in their home institution that is equivalent to the QAA Framework for Higher Education Qualifications (FHEQ) level 7. 
 Further guidance
 i)Academic credits are awarded for the successful completion of assessed modules.
 Affiliate Student English Language Requirements
12.Affiliate students should satisfy UCL’s English Language Requirements (see Section 2.5). EU students admitted via an exchange or EU partnership agreement can satisfy UCL’s English language requirements by meeting CEFR B2 level, subject to departmental approval.
 Exemption from Dual Registration Regulations - Affiliate Students and Joint/Double/Dual Degree Students
13.Affiliate students and students registered on joint, double/dual degrees are exempt from UCL’s Dual Registration regulations (see Chapter 3: Registration Framework for Taught Programmes).
 Further guidance
 i)Students can accept an offer of a place from UCL when they are still formally registered with another Higher Education Institution, or if they are re-sitting examinations. However, they may not formally register with UCL until they are no longer registered with another institution, having graduated or left.

3.3.8 Erasmus Programme Applications

1.In the first instance applicants wishing to study at UCL as an Erasmus Programme exchange student must ensure that there is an appropriate institutional link in operation.
 Further guidance
1.Erasmus Programme exchange applicants should contact the relevant Erasmus Co-ordinator and/or International Relations Office at their home university. 
2.Submitted Socrates-Erasmus application forms must include an official institutional stamp and the signature of the Erasmus Co-ordinator at the applicant’s home institution.
3.Successful selection by an applicant’s home institution is not a guarantee of being accepted by UCL.
4.If successfully selected by their home institution, Erasmus applicants need to complete and submit the online application form.
5.Successful applicants will be registered at UCL as visiting Erasmus students (known as affiliates) and as such will not be eligible for the award of any UCL degree or other qualification.
6.Further information about the Erasmus Programme is available from the Erasmus Programme web pages and the British Council website.

3.3.9 Applicants Transferring from Other Higher Education Institutions

1.All applicants studying at another higher education institution, including those who wish to transfer to a full-time degree programme at UCL, whether to commence a new programme of study, or to enter direct into the second year of a degree programme, must apply through the channels described in Section 3.3.1 Undergraduate Applications and Section 3.3.2 Taught Postgraduate Applications.
 Further guidance
1.All applicants studying at another higher education institution who wish to transfer to UCL should also refer to the regulations relating to Dual Registration (see Chapter 3: Registration Framework for Taught Programmes).

3.4 Accuracy of Applicant Information

1.Information provided by applicants is expected to be accurate and complete. UCL reserves the right to refuse admission or, if already registered, terminate registration if information provided by an applicant is inaccurate or incomplete.
 Further guidance
1.UCL is conscious of the potential risk of applicants seeking fraudulently to gain admission and/or receive a grant, loan or bursary. The prevention of such fraud is implicit in UCL's procedures governing the following areas of work:
 i)Selection of candidates for admission  
 ii)Assessment of accepted candidates' fees status 
 iii)Verification of the qualifications of students admitted 
 iv)Enrolment of students 
 v)Issuing of maintenance allowances to enrolled students and the processing of student loan applications 
 vi)Issuing of certificates of student attendance 
 vii)Monitoring of the attendance of students.
2.Where there is evidence that an applicant for admission to UCL may have provided false or misleading information on his/her application or papers associated with his/her application, the case will initially be considered by the Director of Access and Admissions who will seek to determine whether the applicant has been guilty of deliberate misrepresentation.   This procedure will also be followed where evidence comes to light after an individual has become a registered student of UCL that he/she may have provided false or misleading information when making his/her application for admission to UCL.
3.The applicant will be informed in writing by the Director of Access and Admissions of the apparent misrepresentation and asked to provide a statement in explanation or mitigation. Failure to provide a statement, or to provide satisfactory evidence to corroborate his/her explanation, will result in the applicant having the application and/or offer of admission to UCL withdrawn.  The decision to withdraw an offer of admission or de-register a student from UCL as a result of fraud in an application will be made in consultation with the Vice Provost (Education and Student Experience).
4.The Director of Access and Admissions will communicate immediately in writing the decision to the applicant. 
5.An applicant to UCL does not have the right of appeal against the decision.
6.If fraud is suspected, UCL will, as appropriate, liaise with relevant external bodies (including the police, local education authorities, Student Loans Company, UCAS, UK Visas and Immigration).

3.5 Plagiarism in Undergraduate Personal Statements

1.Should the UCAS Similarity Detection Service alert UCL to possible plagiarism in an application, the faculty office/Admissions will be passed the similarity report and the UCAS application flagged. The admissions selector will review the application in the normal way against the usual initial criteria for consideration for entry to the programme. If the applicant does not meet the criteria, the application will be rejected in the normal manner and no reference will be made to the similarity detection.
2.If the criteria for further consideration are met, the admissions selector will alert the faculty office or Admissions who will contact the applicant. The applicant will be invited to state their case and provide any supporting documentation. The case will then be considered by the Faculty Tutor or Director of Access and Admissions. This assessment must take place before any further stage in the selection process is initiated, including an invitation to interview and/or open day or the issuing of any offer.
3.If it is considered that the case is not sufficiently addressed by the applicant, the application should be rejected and the applicant informed in writing of the reasons for this rejection.
4.If it is considered that the applicant has sufficiently answered the case, then the application must be passed to the Vice Provost (Education and Student Experience) for review and endorsement before the processing of the application can continue. Once endorsed by the Vice Provost (Education and Student Experience), the applicant will be informed by the faculty or Admissions that their application has not been prejudiced on the basis of the similarity detection alert.
5.An applicant will have the right of appeal against a decision. Any such appeal must be made within 21 days of the decision letter. The case will be considered by the Vice Provost (Education and Student Experience) (or nominee).
6.Should the applicant be admitted and subsequently enrol at UCL, no reference to the similarity detection will be made in any future consideration of the student’s conduct or work.

3.6 Revising UCAS Applications Following Submission

1.UCL considers the information contained on an application as complete and accurate at the point of submission to UCAS. It is not anticipated that any amendments will be made to the personal statement, the reference or the grade predictions provided in the reference.
2.Should a school/college wish to submit additional information that has not been solicited by UCL then this must be done prior to a decision being taken on the application and no later than 15th January UCAS deadline, whichever is earlier.
3.Revisions to predicted grades will only be considered if there has been a genuine administrative error on the part of the school/college when the original reference was completed. Any requests for such a revision must be supported by a statement from the school/college indicating that such an error has occurred. Such revisions will only be considered prior to UCL making a decision on the application and no later than the UCAS Equal Consideration deadline, whichever is earlier.
4.Applicants who wish to be considered as a consequence of revised predicted grades have the option of re-applying the following year, when they will be considered in competition with all other applicants.

3.7 Assessment Templates

1.An admissions criteria template must be completed for each admitting programme of study.  The template should be defined and agreed by the Department and will then be used by the admissions selector to assess the qualifications, statement and reference of candidates.  Departments must be able to demonstrate that their selection process is appropriate, consistent and fair.

3.8 Interviewing

1.UCL does not standardly interview its applicants.  Departments seeking to interview applicants must have permission of the Vice Provost (Education and Student Experience).
2.An interview is a meeting with an applicant for admission as a student that takes places only once it has been established that the applicant meets, or is likely to meet, UCL’s entry requirements and is used only for selection purposes and not solely as a means of recruitment.
3.Interviews should be conducted by a minimum of two members of staff, both of whom have been trained in interviewing and equal opportunity awareness.
4.If it is deemed that an interview is required for a group of applicants, then all applicants in this group should be interviewed regardless of their place of residence.  Applicants living in exempted areas of the UK as well as overseas (in other EU countries or elsewhere) may be interviewed by telephone or Skype rather than in person. Technology, such as OVIA interviews, can be used instead of other formats of interview.
5.An agreed line and level of questioning should be adopted and questions must be relevant to entry criteria. Supplementary questions should be used to probe for further information or clarification where answers are incomplete or ambiguous.
6.Interviews should be assessed against predetermined criteria which are consistently applied throughout the whole admissions cycle.
7.The interviewers should keep a set of notes between or among themselves to help them reach an informed decision based on the content of the interview. Interview notes should relate to how candidates demonstrate their knowledge, skills, experience and abilities in relation to the entry criteria.  All interview notes should be uploaded to UCLSelect.  Under the Data Protection Act (DPA) 2018 and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), access to interview notes must be given to applicants who request it.

3.9 Application Decisions

3.9.1 Offer of an Undergraduate Place

1.UCL endeavours to ensure that all applicants who have applied by the October or January equal consideration deadline will receive a decision via UCAS by the end of April in the calendar year of proposed entry, or a calendar year ahead for deferred entry applicants.
2.In addition to the UCAS decision, a formal UCL offer letter and notification of the applicant’s fee classification will be made available by Admissions in Student & Registry Services or the relevant Faculty Tutor, via the UCL Applicant Portal. This will also include UCL’s Terms and Conditions.
 Further guidance
1.Applicants can follow the progress of their application via the UCAS Online Application Tracking Facility or via UCL’s Applicant Portal.
2.Applicants are advised to consult UCAS for any changes in the deadline for the release of application decisions.
3.All applicants must be given an opportunity to visit UCL before they are required to make a final decision on any offer they may receive.

3.9.2 Offer of a Taught Postgraduate Place

1.Upon receipt of a complete application, applicants are invited to join UCL’s Applicant Portal where they can follow the progress of their application.
2.Where there is a specific deadline for a programme of study, decisions may be notified after the closing date has passed.
3.Upon the recommendation of the relevant department/division, a formal UCL offer will be made to the applicant by Admissions in Student & Registry Services.
 Further guidance
1.If unclear, applicants should contact Admissions in Student & Registry Services to clarify the likely decision date. 
2.Departmental/divisional recommendations for the offer of a place are checked and authorised by Admissions in Student & Registry Services.
3.Departments offering applicants fully-funded places at UCL are responsible for ensuring that funding is available for the duration of the programme.

3.9.3 Conditional Offers

1.Conditional offers based on future examination performance may be issued by UCL. In such circumstances, all conditions must be fulfilled by 31 August or the specific deadline stipulated in the offer letter.
 Further guidance
1.Applicants are advised to note Section 4.3 Declining Examination Results. Applicants who have requested re-marking of an A level paper should be aware that, irrespective of the outcome, if the re-mark is not available by 31 August in the year of entry, they will not be eligible for admission.

3.9.4 Feedback to Undergraduate Applicants

1.Feedback on decisions will be provided via UCAS to all unsuccessful applicants who have applied for entry to a full time undergraduate degree programme.  
2.Each admissions tutor/selector will be responsible for providing the faculty office/Admissions with a reason for rejection taken from an agreed list of statements. The reasons for rejection must relate to the admissions criteria specified. If a standard statement cannot be used for an individual applicant, the admissions tutor must provide a brief statement giving the reason for rejection.
3.UCL does not require Admissions, any of its academic departments or faculties to provide further feedback beyond that given with the initial rejection. However, if an applicant requests additional feedback in writing, Admissions, the department or faculty may choose to provide additional information on the decision.
4.Additional feedback should only be provided in response to a request made in writing by the applicant.
5.Under the Data Protection Act (DPA) 2018 and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), UCL cannot respond to requests from schools, parents/guardians or advisors for feedback on unsuccessful applications, unless that request is made in writing and is accompanied by a written statement from the applicant giving consent to the discussion of their application with the named third party.
6.A request for additional feedback will not be considered as an appeal against the decision on the application. When such a request is received, this will not prompt a review of the application nor will providing feedback to an applicant imply that an application has been re-considered.
7.UCL will not consider any new information or documentation that is submitted as a result of any feedback received. Applicants who wish to be re-considered are required to re-apply the following year and to be considered in competition with all other applicants.
8.Decisions on the admission of applicants are final and there is no right of appeal against such decisions except as outlined in Section 3.10 Appeal of Entry Decisions.
9.UCL will consider a complaint relating to an applicant for admission only if it is in relation to process and procedure. Complaints relating to an academic judgement made on an application will not be considered.

3.10 Appeal of Entry Decisions

1.UCL decisions on applications are final, and there is no right of appeal against them. UCL will consider a complaint against any decision only if there is substantive evidence of an irregularity in the processing of the application in question.
 Further guidance
1.For all undergraduate applicants, in the first instance complaints concerning an undergraduate application should be addressed to the Director of Access and Admissions unless the complaint concerns the Bartlett School of Architecture of the Faculty of Laws where it should be addressed to the Faculty Tutor of the Faculty concerned. If the complaint is against the Director of Access and Admissions or the Faculty Tutor, it should be addressed to the Vice-Provost (Education & Student Experience) or another senior member of administrative or academic staff, should there be any conflict of interest.
2.For all taught postgraduate applicants, in the first instance any complaint concerning a taught postgraduate application should be addressed to the Director of Access and Admissions. If the complaint is against the Director of Access and Admissions, it should be addressed to the Vice-Provost (Education & Student Experience) or another senior member of administrative or academic staff, should there be any conflict of interest.
3.The Faculty Tutor/Director of Access and Admissions will investigate the complaint and respond formally to it. If the complaint is not resolved through this investigation, or if the complainant is not satisfied with the response, the complainant may submit the complaint to the Registrar. The complaint must be received by the Registrar within 28 days of the date of the formal response from the Faculty Tutor/Director of Access and Admissions. Complaints received after that deadline will not be considered.  
4.When a complaint is received, the Registrar or another officer nominated by the Registrar will decide whether there is substantive evidence sufficient to justify a formal investigation.
5.If the Registrar decides the evidence is not sufficient to justify a formal investigation, he/she will inform the complainant accordingly.

If the Registrar decides there are prima facie grounds for a formal investigation, the complaint will be referred to a panel comprising:

  • Vice Provost (Education and Student Experience)
  • The Nominee of the Registrar; 
  • A person independent of UCL to be nominated by the Registrar.
7.The Registrar will inform the complainant of the decision to refer the complaint to the panel.
8.The panel will normally consider the appeal on the basis of the papers relating to the case. The panel may interview the applicant and any other persons involved in the case, and shall be required to ensure equal treatment to the parties concerned, i.e. the applicant and the officer(s) who took the decision on the application or who were involved in the procedure for handling it. Such persons shall receive copies of all the documentation relevant to the complaint.
9.The panel will determine the complaint and decide upon any action to be taken as a result of their determination. Their decision will be conveyed to the Registrar who will communicate it to the complainant and arrange for the implementation of any action resulting from it. The other parties to the complaint will also be informed.
10.The decision of the complaints panel is final as far as UCL's internal procedures are concerned. If a complainant is dissatisfied with the decision of the panel, he or she may have recourse to the courts to request a judicial review.
11.The Registrar will keep a record of complaints which will include details of the age, gender and ethnicity of complainants.

3.11 Applicant Behaviour

1.UCL aims to ensure that staff, students, applicants, visitors and all others associated with the university are treated with dignity, respect and equity.  If an applicant displays behaviours that are in contravention of UCL’s Equality and Diversity Policy, we reserve the right to reject the application or withdraw any offer of admission made and terminate our contract with the applicant.
2.Hostile, aggressive or otherwise, inappropriate behaviour or language, whether expressed verbally, in writing or on social media, will not be tolerated.  Where the university becomes aware of such behaviour, it will act to address this.