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Information for parents and carers

LSE offers students the unique opportunity to study the social sciences at a university with a worldwide academic reputation, while enjoying the cultural and social resources of one of the world's greatest capital cities.  

We hope this information will help you feel confident in supporting your child or ward understand the opportunities available to them at LSE.

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Studying at LSE

Studying at LSE will be a challenging, stimulating and eye-opening experience. We expect our students to critically engage with their degree and consider the real-world application of the academic topics they are studying.

Our academics: Our students are taught by world-leading academics whose research plays a key role in informing public debates and shaping the world we live in. Over 97% of our academic staff are actively engaged in research, with many acting as expert advisers to political parties, the Civil Service and policy pressure groups. 

Our programmes: We offer 40 undergraduate degrees, many of which are joint or combined honours programmes such as BSc International Relations and Chinese. As we are keen for students to develop transferable skills and understand the interdisciplinary nature of social science, almost all programmes allow students to select “outside” options during their studies. These could be courses from other academic departments, or language or literature courses offered by our Language Centre.

Our teaching: Teaching is primarily made up of lectures and classes. Most students will have around 9-15 hours of teaching per week, with course reading, assignments and projects students making up a full working week. For some students this will be a significant change to the teaching structure and format they are used to at school or college. Preparing students for independent study and helping them develop these study skills before arriving at the School may help with the transition to university level study. LSE LIFE have also created a series of study skills podcasts. You can find further information on teaching and assessment here.

Student life

Life at LSE is about more than academic study, and we encourage our undergraduates to make the most of the full student experience. 

There are over 200 student societies, covering a wide range of academic, career, cultural and activity-based interests. The student newspaper, journal, radio station, tv show and student film group cater for those interested in media. There are over 40 sports clubs and a Sports Performance Programme for individuals or teams competing at a high level. 

In their free time students can get involved in volunteering and charity work, enjoy weekly music concerts, join the LSE choir or orchestra or simply spend time relaxing in the Saw Swee Hock Student Centre. 

If your child or ward is worried about the social aspect of studying at the School please encourage them to visit our student activities page and our Students’ Union webpage. They will soon see there is truly something for everyone at LSE!

Our campus

LSE is based on one campus in the centre of London, located between Covent Garden, Fleet Street and Holborn. As all of our buildings are located in one compact space LSE students can enjoy the best of both worlds – the community feel that comes with a campus university, plus the academic, entertainment and graduate benefits of being located in the heart of London. 

Explore our campus in relation to some of the city’s key attractions using our tailored Google map.

We have our own on campus resources, including our library and study spaces, food and drink outlets, sports facilities and the Saw Swee Hock Student Centre. As LSE is part of the University of London, our students can enjoy additional facilities at Student Central, the largest Student Centre in Europe. 

Find out more about our campus.

Safety

We take the safety of our students very seriously. As with any large city, students do need to take sensible precautions to stay safe on campus and in  London. Our campus security team are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Parents and guardians may find the safety advice from EducationUK and the National Union of Students helpful.

Support at LSE

LSE provides a range of academic, personal and pastoral support systems. 

Academic 

Every student is allocated an academic mentor who is responsible for maintaining an overview of their academic progress and general wellbeing throughout their time at School. 

Students can also seek guidance from their academic departments, class teachers, seminar leaders and academic support librarians. 

LSE LIFE our centre for academic, professional and personal development, offers support in a variety of ways. These include one-to-one advice sessions, study skills workshops and peer-to-peer mentoring. 

Our Language Centre offer modern language courses, a proofreading and translation service and English language support. 

Personal and pastoral  

Personal and pastoral support can be provided by lots of teams at the School, including:

Student Services Centre: This is the first point of contact for most general queries, including admissions, financial support, immigration and visas and exams.

Disability and Wellbeing service: The Disability and Wellbeing team offer support to students with disabilities and long-term medical conditions.

Student Wellbeing and Counselling service 

Peer Support Scheme: The Peer Support Scheme offers students the chance to talk to other students about anything they are worried about. 

LSE Students’ Union Advice Service 

Off Campus Support Scheme: This scheme is designed to provide first year students not living in LSE halls support settling into LSE. Students are allocated a student mentor and can meet other students not living in LSE halls. 

Careers Service: The Careers Service offer support in finding part time jobs, internships, volunteering opportunities and graduate roles. They offer career advice appointments, run events and help students explore their different career options.

Residential Services: Every hall of residence has its own team of wardens and a hall committee, who are there to provide practical and pastoral support. They also have a private housing service who can help students find private accommodation.  

Faith Centre 

Medical care 

Parents or carers of international students may find our guidance for students moving to the UK and overcoming culture shock helpful. 

Find out more about how we support students at LSE.

Careers

Our Careers Service provides a great deal of support, from helping students begin their career research when they first arrive at the School, to providing guidance to alumni up to five years after graduation.

The Careers Service offer a range of events, information and advice to help the personal and professional develop of each individual student at the School. Career seminars, sector specific events and employer presentations are designed to help students investigate their career options and start building their career. They also run overseas events in in Brussels, Beijing, Shanghai, and Hong Kong, reflecting the global opportunities for our students. 

Employers value an LSE education because of the intellectual rigour, real-world application and global outlook of our programmes. A degree from LSE is widely recognised internationally and our students go on to work all over the world. 

Visit our Graduate destinations database to find out more about what LSE graduates do.

Our International Student Visa Advice Team (ISVAT) can provide information for international students who wish to work in the UK post-graduation. More information can be found in their information sheets and FAQs for international students.

You may also find the advice from the LSE Careers service for prospective students helpful. 

Accommodation

All new undergraduate students who make LSE their firm choice and apply by the deadline are guaranteed accommodation in their first year of study.  

Our halls are centrally located, with the majority within walking distance of the campus. Take a look at our map.

Students can select their hall of residence based on a range of criteria, including location, meal provision, room type, facilities, budget and contract length. Most residences will include social or communal areas, such as computer rooms, fitness centres, bars, cafes or common rooms. Compare our accommodation options using the accommodation search tool.

Costs start from £100 a week for a shared self-catered room but will vary depending on location, room type and facilities.

Accommodation is also available for students with disabilities or other support needs.

Each residence has a warden team who provide support 24/7 and work to ensure the personal and social wellbeing of students. 

After first year, most students will move into private accommodation. LSE has its own private housing service to support students with this process. The University of London Housing Services can also help.  
 
For more information, price lists and 360 degree virtual accommodation tours, please visit our accommodation pages.

Applying 

How to apply 

All undergraduate applications must be submitted via UCAS by 15 January 2021 for entry in September 2021, or deferred entry in September 2022. 

The UCAS form allows students to apply for up to five programmes. We generally recommend that students apply for no more than two programmes at one university. 

It's not necessary for applicants to have sat their final exams by 15 January 2021. The majority of offers we make at LSE are conditional offers based on predicted grades supplied by the applicant’s school or college. 

Entry requirements 

Our standard offers are expressed in terms of A-levels or the IB, however these are not the only qualifications accepted for entry. Use the following links for more information:

Depending on the qualification the applicant is applying with, they may also be asked to sit our Undergraduate Admissions Assessment to enable the assessors to find out more about their academic profile. 

The selection process 

LSE is a highly competitive institution, receiving an average of 13 applications per place. This means that it is important that students refer to our entry requirements carefully, to ensure they are making realistic choices. We will assess a candidate’s suitability based on their academic performance (existing grades and predicted grades), the content of their teacher’s reference and associated contextual information and the personal statement. 

Our LLB Laws programme requires all applicants to take the LNAT test and our mathematics programmes recommend that applicants take the Test of Mathematics for University Admission (TMUA). Assessors will take performance in these tests into consideration as part of the selection process. 

LSE does not interview for any of our degree programmes

For the majority of candidates the only chance they have to demonstrate their enthusiasm for and knowledge of their chosen discipline, is the personal statement. We are looking for evidence of independent engagement with the subject so encouraging your child or ward to think about what activities they could participate in to take their academic interest beyond the classroom would be useful. We are looking for evidence of critical engagement with the subject, not just a long list of book titles, activities or experiences. Rather than listing podcasts or lectures the student has listened to, we are keen to know what they thought about the topic being discussed. We have provided a list of desirable skills, characteristics and attributes on each of our programme pages. Thinking of ways to demonstrate these skills is a good starting point.

For more information please visit our applying to LSE general page and Virtual Open Day page.

Additional resources  

Fees and funding

LSE awards around £4 million in scholarships and financial support to its undergraduate students every year. Students may also be able to access scholarships and financial support from governments and agencies around the world.

We recommend that students allow around £1,100-£1,300 per month for all living expenses, including accommodation, travel, food, laundry, study costs, and other personal expenses.  More details on living costs and making a budget see our London on a budget page.

Tuition fees 

Fees for 2021 entry have not yet been confirmed. Details will be published in our Table of fees in Spring 2021.

However, as a guide the 2020 fee for new UK and EU students is £9,250. The fee may rise with inflation in subsequent years of study. 

The 2020 fee for new overseas students is £21,570 per year. Overseas students are required to pay this fee in instalments or in full at the start of each year. Once announced the 2021 fee will remain the same amount for each subsequent year of full-time study.

The arrangements for EU students applying for 2021 entry have not yet been confirmed. We are unable to confirm tuition fee amounts, access to tuition fee loans or financial support arrangements for 2021 at present. 

Tuition fee loan 

UK students can apply for a tuition fee loan to cover the full cost of the fee for the duration of their undergraduate programme. The money is paid directly to the university through the Student Loans Company. The loan is repaid once the student has graduated and is earning over the repayment threshold.

Access to tuition fee loans for EU students applying for entry in 2021 has not yet been confirmed. 

Full details of eligibility criteria for funding

Find out about interest rates and repaying loans

Fee status classification 

On receipt of the UCAS form the School carries out an assessment of the applicant’s fee status. Further information on fee status classification.

Maintenance loan 

UK students can apply for a Maintenance Loan from the UK government to assist with their living costs. This is repaid once the student has graduated and is earning over the repayment threshold. 

The Maintenance Loan value will be determined by household income, UK government funding arrangements where the student normally lives (arrangements will be different in England and Wales for instance) and whether the student will be living at home or not. 

The maximum Student Finance England Maintenance loan for students studying in London and living at home is £7,747 (2020 entry). The maximum loan amount for students studying in London and living away from home is £12,010 (2020 entry). 

Students should apply for both loans (maintenance and tuition fee) in the spring before starting university. 

Please check the government website for more information about eligibility, applying for loans and repayment. 

LSE Financial Support 

LSE Bursary: Undergraduate students from the UK and EU may be eligible for an LSE Bursary depending on household income. In 2020, awards were between £750 - £4000 a year. This bursary is renewable for each year of study and does not have to be repaid. 

LSE Accommodation Bursary: First year UK undergraduate students applying to live in a qualifying LSE hall of residence may be eligible for an Accommodation Bursary. In 2019/20, bursaries ranged from £750 to £2,500. The Accommodation Bursary does not have to be repaid.

LSE Discretionary Bursaries: Undergraduate students from the UK and EU who face exceptional financial need may be considered for a Discretionary Bursary. Exceptional circumstances may be classified as caring responsibilities, financial need related to disability or an unavoidable requirement to live at home.  

Undergraduate Support Scheme (USS):  The Undergraduate Support Scheme is designed to help overseas students who do not have the necessary funds to meet all their costs of study. The amount of assistance will vary according to individual financial need but awards are usually between £6,000 and £15,000. Awards are renewable for each year of study. The award does not have to be repaid.    

Scholarships: LSE awards a number of scholarships, funded by private or corporate donation, to our students every year. The number, value, eligibility criteria and type of awards vary annually. All scholarships are primarily awarded based on financial need.  

You can find more information about fees and funding on our webpages.