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What to Know About Applying to UK Universities

If you are considering applying to universities in the UK, it’s worth keeping in mind that the process can be quite different from that of US-based colleges. Here are some of the top bits of knowledge to get you started on that journey!

  1. The main study topic of your degree (referred to in the US as ‘the major’) needs to be chosen when you apply to university. This is different from most colleges in the US, where you can generally decide on a major years after starting the course.

  1. UCAS (University and Colleges Admissions Service) is a central, country-wide service used for applying to university. All apps are submitted through it.

  1. You can apply to a maximum of five schools, using a common application which requires one essay only.

  1. Extracurricular activities are not valued that much in the application, unless they are directly related to the subject for which you are applying.

  1. To apply for a specific course, you need to have studied specific subjects in high school. This means that when choosing the high school subjects for your last two years, you should take into account any subjects that are required for your preferred university courses.

  1. Interviews are not always part of the admissions process; it depends on the university and the course. However, if they are offered, they are a very important part of the process and weigh much more than in the US system.

  1. Most university offers are conditional on your final grades in high school.

  1. Students in British schools can apply for UK Government loans for their course tuition fees and living costs. Students from other countries are not eligible, but they may be able to apply for financing opportunities in their country of origin.

  1. You can only apply to Cambridge or Oxford, not to both of them.

  1. The early application deadline is 15th of October of your final year--if you apply to Oxford, Cambridge, or to Medicine at any school. The regular deadline is the 15th of January of your final year, and it applies to all other schools and subjects.