Open_Day_6216_1366x538_16-9_sRGBe

Information for mature applicants

LSE welcomes applications from mature students and values the contribution they make to the School community. LSE has a large proportion of postgraduate students which means that the student population is, on average, older than at many other universities and mature undergraduates should not feel out of place. A mature student is normally anyone aged over 21 when they start their programme of study.

 

Applications

You should read the information about our degree programmes carefully to ensure you have selected the right programme of study for your interests.

All applications to LSE are made via UCAS. Our Making an Application section contains advice on how to complete your application. Applicants should also carefully read our Entrance requirements  section. LSE is able to offer some flexibility in its entrance requirements for mature applicants in recognition of the fact they may have life experience relevant to their intended field of study.

Entry requirements

Relevant recent study

For all applicants, including mature applicants, we look for evidence of relevant, recent, study indicating the ability and the motivation to study at a demanding level. Relevant normally means academic in focus and equivalent to least Level 3 in the Regulated Qualification Framework (A level or equivalent standard). Recent means completed within three years of your proposed programme start date (ie, for 2017 entry, no earlier than 2014). Applicants who have performed highly in relevant study completed marginally over the three year limit may be considered with the Undergraduate Admissions Assessment.

The most appropriate pattern of study will depend on the individual situation of each applicant. We have provided some common scenarios below, however this information is for guidance only: if you are making decisions about your intended course of study in order to make an application to LSE we recommend you contact Student Marketing and Recruitment to make sure that your proposed qualifications would meet our entry requirements.

LSE receives many more applications than places available and each year we have to disappoint a large number of well-qualified applicants. While Selectors pay most attention to your most recent qualifications, when assessing your application they will consider your whole academic record in a competitive process with other, similar applicants.

GCSE requirements

We normally require a minimum of Grade B (Grade 5 for reformed GCSEs) in English and Mathematics for entry to any of our undergraduate programmes. We do not accept functional skills or alternative qualifications in lieu of a GCSE, however we may be able to waive our GCSE requirement if:

  • either: more than five years have passed since your most recent attempt at GCSE English and/or Mathematics
  • or: extenuating circumstances affected your most recent GCSE performance
  • and: we are confident your recent study or life experience has provided you with the necessary literacy and numeracy skills.

If we are uncertain whether you have the required literacy and numeracy skills we may request you sit the Undergraduate Admissions Assessment.

Mathematics requirements

Note that we are not able to waive the requirement for A level Mathematics or Further Mathematics for those degree programmes which require it. All applicants for these programmes are required to have the equivalent of A level Mathematics (and Further Mathematics where necessary) from within the last three years. Applicants to BSc Accounting and Finance who do not offer A level Mathematics must have the equivalent of GCSE Mathematics Grade A.

Relevant recent study scenarios

Note: these scenarios are intended to help you research potential options for how to qualify for study at LSE. However, the information is for guidance only and we recommend you contact Student Marketing and Recruitment to make sure that your proposed qualifications would meet our entry requirements.

Possible Scenario

Potential qualification route

I have no Level 3 qualifications acceptable for entry (eg, I only studied to GCSE level or I hold an international qualification that is not acceptable for entry)

At least two traditional academic A levels

An Access to HE course

A Foundation Programme or Foundation Year

60 ECTS credits at Undergraduate level

I have Level 3 qualifications but they do not meet LSE’s entry requirements (eg, grades too low)

At least two traditional academic A levels (retakes may be acceptable, but we would prefer at least one new subject)

An Access to HE course

A Foundation Programme or Foundation Year

60 ECTS credits at Undergraduate level.

I have Level 3 qualifications that meet LSE’s entry requirements but they are more than three years old

30 ECTS credits at Undergraduate level.

We may also be able to consider professional/vocational qualifications or other academic endeavours, contact us to discuss your plans.

I hold a Bachelor’s degree or higher qualification which meet’s LSE’s entry requirements but is more than three years old *

30 ECTS credits at Undergraduate level or higher.

We may also be able to consider professional/vocational qualifications or other academic endeavours, contact us to discuss your plans.

I hold a Bachelor’s degree or higher which does not meet LSE’s entry requirements*

60 ETCS credits at Undergraduate level or higher.

We expect to see academic progression and therefore it is not normally appropriate for students who hold a degree to study Level 3 qualifications (eg, A levels or an Access course) in order to meet our entrance requirements. The exception to this is where students who hold a non-quantitative degree need to meet our Mathematics requirement.

*Home and EU students who already hold a Bachelor’s degree or higher should familiarise themselves with the Equivalent or Lower Qualification rules for student finance

To see the required grades for some common non A level qualifications please see Entry Requirements. If your qualification is not listed please contact our Student Marketing and Recruitment for advice.

Personal statement

All applicants are required to write a short personal statement as part of their application. As competition for places at LSE is intense the personal statement plays an important part in our selection process. Selectors are most interested in your current academic interests and we recommend you spend the majority of your statement discussing these, rather than providing biographical details.

More information on preparing your personal statement

Academic reference

All applicants to LSE are required to submit a reference. It is essential that your reference is provided by someone who knows your studies and/or employment record well and we normally recommend asking a teacher/tutor from your most recent academic study.

Special note for applicants from one-year courses

Students who started an Access, Foundation or other course in the academic year in which they are applying may find their referee can provide only limited information about their progress and predicted grades at the time of application. LSE gives equal consideration to all applications received before 18:00 GMT on 15 January and we encourage applicants on one year courses to consider applying later in the application window so that their referee can provide more detailed information.

If your referee would like to send a further, more detailed, report in early February we can accommodate this: please remember to quote your Personal ID number on any additional correspondence. The Admissions Selectors may also contact your referee to request further information regarding the qualification you are pursuing or your academic progress.

The Undergraduate Admissions Assessment

If you have taken a course such as an Access to HE, Certificate of Higher Education, Foundation Programme or Foundation Year that was not formally examined or which has examinations that are not standardised, we would not normally make an offer of admission without asking you to take LSE's Undergraduate Admissions Assessment.

Accommodation

There are a number of accommodation options for mature students, including couples and families. Information on accommodation.

Support for mature students

At LSE, teaching and learning depend very much on your own study and contributions to class discussions and debates: you have to be a self-starter, willing and able to take initiatives in your own studies. Assessment is based more on traditional unseen examinations than in some other universities. The School offers several sources of advice and guidance to support you in your transition to academic life, your study throughout the degree programme andin preparation for examinations. Each student is allocated an Academic Adviser, a member of staff in their academic department who meets with students at least once per term and receives reports on students' progress from their class teachers. Lecturers and class teachers offer office hours to discuss course material in more depth and LSE LIFE offers tailored study skills support. The LSE Students' Union also has a dedicated Part-Time and Mature Students Officer who organises a programme of events to support mature students throughout their studies.