Undergraduate students attending a Maths seminar in a Coates Building seminar room, University Park. november 5th 2021.

Entry Requirements

Although the majority of our applicants will have A levels, we welcome and value a wide range of alternative qualifications. If you want to find out more about our entry requirements, it's time to read on...

Applicants to degree programmes will usually be expected to have studied three subjects at A level.

All conditional offers will ordinarily be made on the basis of three full A levels (some subjects are not included – please see our course pages) and students will only be required to have achieved a pass in the fourth subject, if taken. The grade achieved in the fourth subject may have significance when an applicant has narrowly failed to achieve the specified grades at A level.

Applicants are not required to take the English Baccalaureate in order to be considered for courses at Nottingham.

Some courses require specific subjects at GCSE at a specific grade and other courses require a certain number of GCSEs at A grade. We advise students to check our entry requirements carefully before applying. All GCSE requirements are outlined in our course pages and UCAS listings.

Compulsory subject requirements for admission to specific degree programmes are specified in our course pages and UCAS listings.

We make contextual offers to students whose personal circumstances may have restricted achievement at school or college. Find out more and check if you may be eligible.

Our admission process recognises that applicants have a wealth of different experiences and may have followed various educational pathways. While our publicity materials generally express entry requirements in terms of A levels, most of our schools and faculties accept a much broader range of qualifications. The following list is not exhaustive and the University treats applicants with other qualifications on an individual basis.

The entry requirements for alternative qualifications can be quite specific – for example, you may need to take certain modules and achieve a specified grade in those modules. It is important to find out any such requirements in time for you to make the right choices at school or college. If you have already chosen all your modules, then you need to check carefully whether these match our entry requirements. If in doubt, please contact us.

If your qualifications don't match your first choice of course at the University of Nottingham, a related course here may be open to you. The best place to start is the UCAS course listings, where there is detailed information about what we require from alternative qualifications for each course.

If you can't see what you are looking for or require further information, please view the UCAS course listings for specific courses or make an enquiry to discuss your qualification.

For qualifications from outside the UK, please see our information about entry requirements by country.

English language equivalencies

If English isn't your first language, you will need to meet the relevant English language requirements. IELTS requirements are detailed on our course pages, though we also accept a variety of alternative qualifications.

If you are an international student, you should also check our information about applying from specific countries.

If you need extra support to meet the English language requirements for your academic course, you can attend a presessional course at the Centre for English Language Education (CELE). If you pass at the required level, you can progress directly to your academic programme without retaking IELTS.

The University of Nottingham and partner institutions run a number of foundation years giving entry to specified courses at the University. Please see our list of foundation courses for details.

Admissions staff at the University of Nottingham assess many applications using only the information available on the UCAS form. Some courses use additional methods of assessment for all or some applicants.

This may be for a range of reasons, including to:

  • assess your suitability for the profession linked to the course (for example, nursing or veterinary medicine)
  • clarify the material covered by your qualifications or as part of Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning
  • assess your achievements, motivation and potential
  • distinguish between otherwise similar applicants

Additional assessment may include interviews or tests. Some courses may ask for examples of written work. Where courses use additional assessment, admissions staff will send you information explaining the nature of the assessment, what admissions staff will be looking for and how you can prepare.

The University of Nottingham welcomes mature students with a broad range of experience and qualifications. In considering applications from mature students, we take into account a range of vocational qualifications and occupational and life experiences, as well as more traditional qualifications. For more information, see mature students.

Consideration will be given as to whether you will be able to fulfil the objectives of the programme of study and achieve the standards required. A range of factors additional to, and in some cases instead of, formal examination results is considered in the selection process.

These can include:

  • the personal statement and reference
  • additional evidence of achievement, motivation and potential as gathered through interview or assessment of written materials
  • other factors as appropriate to the discipline, such as employment or volunteer work in relevant fields and sustained critical engagement with relevant issues.

The potential variety in the range and breadth of qualifications presented by applicants, referred to above, makes a school reference a key aspect in informing our admissions staff of students' abilities and the context in which they have studied.

University of Nottingham asks staff writing references to confirm in the reference any factors, if known, that might have affected the applicant’s achievement. These factors can relate to the student’s personal circumstances and background or to the educational context. Please see our policy for details.

If a school does not offer the breadth of provision which enables students to follow more than three subjects at A level then this should be stated in the reference. This will allow all students to be treated fairly.

If you are an international student, you should also check our information about applying from specific countries.

Access / BTEC Entry requirements

Find out more about courses which most commonly accept the Access HE Diploma and BTEC qualifications* (those studied in the UK) and their entry requirements. These qualifications are the minimum requirements and you may need additional GCSEs or other qualifications.