Access and Widening Participation


Experience UCL

Experience UCL is an exciting opportunity for young people from our priority groups to visit UCL, learn about life as a student and hear about the support services we offer

Students on Campus picture

Applications for Experience UCL days taking place in the Autumn term are now closed. 

Experience UCL is an exciting opportunity for prospective students to visit UCL and learn about life as an undergraduate. This activity is targeted at students from priority groups that are currently underrepresented in higher education and at UCL - see below for further details.

You will spend the day in a small group with other young people and will be accompanied by two current UCL students, who will show you around the UCL campus and share insights into their university experiences. During the visit you will also have the opportunity to speak to members of UCL staff to seek advice and guidance on topics such as applying to university, the support services available and financial support.

Experience UCL days will run on a weekday during UCL term time, meaning you may need to take time off from sixth form or college in order to attend.

Please ensure you carefully read the information below about the eligibility criteria for Experience UCL before applying.

Autumn Term days (November - December 2023)

Thursday 23 November: Care Experienced and Estranged Students
Thursday 30 November: Young Carer Students
Wednesday 6 December: Forced Migrant Students
Wednesday 13 December: Students with Disabilities

Who can take part?

Experience UCL is open to students who are currently in Year 12 or 13 (or equivalent in Scotland or Northern Ireland), studying at a state school or college in the UK.

Applicants must have achieved at least five A*-C/9-5 grades at GCSE and be currently studying a Level 3 qualification which would enable them to obtain a place on an undergraduate course at UCL. This includes A levels, the IB, a BTEC Extended Diploma or an Access to Higher Education Diploma. Applicants studying A levels must be taking at least two subjects from UCL's list of preferred A levels.

In their Level 3 qualification applicants must be likely to achieve a minimum of BBB at A level or the equivalent grades accepted by UCL in other UK qualifications, including the Scottish Advanced Highers and Welsh Baccalaureate. An overview of UCL’s entry requirements and policies for our undergraduate programmes, including details of grade equivalencies for accepted qualifications, can be found on our website.

In addition, applicants must meet one or more of the following criteria:

  • are a student with a disability or long-term health condition;
  • are a young carer;
  • are a forced migrant (e.g. refugee or asylum seeker);
  • are estranged from their parent(s);
  • are currently or have experience of being in care (e.g. foster care, residential care, kinship care);
  • are from a Gypsy, Roma or Traveller community.

In the application form you will also be asked to provide the contact details of a teacher at your school or college who we can contact to verify that you meet the eligibility criteria for this activity. Please make sure you have spoken to your teacher about this before applying. Applications without a supporting teacher reference will not be considered complete.

It is advisable that you complete the application form with a parent/carer nearby, as they will need to complete some sections of the form.

Places on Experience UCL are limited. Whilst we will try to accommodate all applicants, this may not be possible and we will use the shortlisting criteria detailed in our Who we work with webpage to prioritise young people from the least represented groups. You will be awarded points based on the number of criteria that you meet. Applicants with the highest numbers of points will be offered the places available on the programme.

Why take part?
  • Learn about life as a UCL undergraduate student
  • Be taken on a tour of the UCL campus
  • Build your knowledge of the university application process
  • Hear about the various support services offered at UCL
  • Gain expert advice and guidance from UCL staff members
When will Experience UCL days take place?

Experience UCL days will run across the UCL Autumn term.

Each day will be focused on a specific priority group or related groups, with the information presented on that day tailored to the needs of that group, so you are advised to apply to the day which is most suitable for your circumstances. For example, if you are a young carer, you should apply for the young carer day.

If you apply for a day that you are not eligible for (i.e. if you are not part of that specific group), if possible, you will be directed to other events and/or resources that may be more relevant to your circumstances. Applications from students not belonging to any of our priority groups will be rejected.

If you fit into more than one of the priority groups that Experience UCL is targeted at (e.g. you have a disability and are a young carer), you can indicate this in your application and we will allocate you according to availability.

Allocations will be confirmed and communicated to successful applicants once the application deadline has passed.