Senate regulation 1: Regulations governing minimum entry qualifications and language requirements for taught programmes of study

Downloadable version of Senate Regulation 1 (PDF, 231KB) 

General entrance requirements for undergraduate programmes of study

1.1

The following are eligible for admission:

  • (a) Holders of a degree of a University in the United Kingdom or a degree awarded by the UK Council for National Academic Awards;
  • (b) Holders of the General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE) or General Certificate of Education (GCE) with:
    • (i) passes in FIVE subjects with at least two at Advanced Level or
    • (ii) passes in FIVE subjects with at least one Advanced Level and at least two at Advanced Supplementary or Subsidiary Level or
    • (iii) passes in FOUR subjects with at least three at Advanced Level or
    • (iv) passes in FOUR subjects provided all are at either Advanced or Advanced Supplementary Level.
  • (c) Holders of the Scottish Higher or Advanced Higher with:
    • (i) passes in four subjects with at least three at the Advanced Higher Grade;
    • (ii) passes in at least five highers
  • (d) Holders of the Irish Leaving Certificate showing passes at Grade H3 or better in five subjects at the Honours Higher Level;
  • (e) Holders of a Business and Technician Education Council (BTEC) National Certificate or Diploma with two passes;
  • (f) Holders of GNVQ Advanced Level (or double award Vocational Certificate of Education (VCE));
  • (g) Holders of the European Baccalaureate;
  • (h) Holders of the International Baccalaureate (IB);
  • (i) Holders of University of Leicester Certificates of HE for courses offered by the University's Institute of Lifelong Learning;
  • (j) Holders of an Open University (OU) Foundation Course Credit;
  • (k) Those who have passed, at a satisfactory level, the Cambridge Pre-U;
  • (l) Those who have passed at a satisfactory standard an Access Programme, with a substantial number of credits at level 3 or equivalent, which is kite marked by an Authorised Validating Agency (AVA) under the Quality Assurance Agency;
  • (m) Those who have passed at a satisfactory standard a Foundation Year programme offered by the University, or approved by the University and delivered by International Study Centre;
  • (n) Holders of other qualifications (including those obtained overseas) which are deemed by the University to be equivalent to the above.

1.2

The following notes apply:

  • (a) No subject may be counted at more than one level, for example an AS in History and an A level in History Regulations governing minimum entry requirements and language requirements for taught programmes of study
  • (b) Grades A, B,C and 9-4 only of the GCSE and of the GCE Ordinary Level are accepted as pass grades;
  • (c) Grade I in the Certificate of Secondary Education is accepted as equivalent to a pass in the GCSE or GCE Ordinary Level;
  • (d) Some subjects are regarded as more suitable than others as a preparation for a University course.
  • Advice on the choice of subjects is given below.

1.3

Applicants who, in the judgement of the University, submit satisfactory evidence of previous serious study and of the academic aptitude to pursue the course proposed are also eligible for admission.

1.4

Qualifications required for admission to a foundation degree vary from programme to programme; details can be found in the University online prospectus.1.5. The general entrance requirements set out above state the minimum standard of educational attainment required for admission to the University. In order to qualify for admission to a particular programme of study candidates may need to attain a higher standard owing to the academic demand imposed by the course itself and the competition for places. Information about the specific entrance requirements for each undergraduate course is given in the Undergraduate Prospectus which can be obtained from the University website.

Choice of subjects for entrance qualifications

1.6

The range of subjects which can be taken in order to gain the qualifications for university entrance is very wide and applicants may find it difficult to make an appropriate choice. ‘University and College Entrance: The Official Guide’ gives advice on which subjects are required for entry to particular degree courses and which are preferred. For many courses, however, no specific subjects are required and, for the great majority, only one or two subjects are specified. The following advice about the choice of subjects reflects the general opinion of those responsible for undergraduate admissions at the University of Leicester and is offered as a set of guidelines which may be of assistance.

  • (a) GCSE (and other 16 + examinations):
    • (i) English Language and Mathematics: these subjects are specified for only a minority of degree courses but it is assumed that most applicants will have taken them. They are required for those wishing to enter certain professions in the UK (including teaching).
    • (ii) Dual Award Science: this qualification is acceptable. If a particular subject (e.g. Chemistry) is specified in course entrance requirements, Dual Award Science will be accepted provided it contains an appropriate component of the subject.
  • (b) Advanced/Advanced Supplementary Level (and other 18 + Examinations):
    • (i) Subject Overlap: Subjects having a similar content may not be counted together. Possible examples of overlap may be Biology and Human Biology, Classical Studies and Ancient History, Economics and Business Studies etc. Such overlapping subjects may be discounted in assessing whether or not an applicant meets both general and course entrance requirements. Applicants requiring advice about whether two subjects are considered to overlap should consult the relevant Admissions Tutor or the Admissions Office.
    • (ii) General Studies: This subject is accepted for certain courses; candidates should refer to Course Entrance Requirements in the Undergraduate Prospectus for details. Where it is accepted it will be counted towards the entrance qualifications provided that it is offered as part of a group of at least three subjects (e.g. as a third A level or as an AS level).
    • (iii) Other Subjects: Examinations in all subjects governed by a recognised authority (e.g. examination board) are accepted by the University.
    • (iv) GNVQ Advanced Level: The University welcomes applications from students with GNVQ Advanced Level, which is regarded as equivalent to two GCE Advanced Levels. In order to ensure that GNVQ applicants are adequately prepared for university studies, some departments may require students to have taken additional units in specific areas, a GCE Advanced Level, or other credits in addition to the GNVQ Advanced Level. Advice about this may be sought from the relevant Admissions Tutor.

General entrance requirements for taught postgraduate programmes of study

1.7

The qualifications for admission to a taught Master’s degree, postgraduate diploma or certificate, as prescribed by the regulations which follow, represent only the minimum requirements for acceptance, and satisfaction of these requirements does not entitle a candidate to admission. This applies particularly to an applicant who wishes to pursue a Master’s degree, postgraduate diploma or certificate in a field different from that of their first degree.

Qualification  Country  Requirements 
Matura/Reifeprufing  Austria  Grade 2 
GCE/O Level 1120 Syllabus  Brunei  Grace C or above 
Diploma za Sredno Obrazovani  Bulgaria  Grade 5 or above 
GCE/O Level, English  Cameroon  Grade C or above 
Bevis for Studenterekasmen  Denmark  Grade 7 
Ylioppilastutkinto  Finland  Grade 5 
Baccalaureat L'Option International English  France  Grade 12 and above 
Baccalaureat General  France  Grade 14 and above 
Abitur, English  Germany  Grade 12 or above 
Studentsprof  Iceland  Grade 8 (as compulsory) 
Irish Leaving Certificate  Ireland  Grade C or O4/H4 or above 
Luxembourg Diplome de Fin d'Etudes Secondaires  Luxembourg  45 (Bien) or above 
GCE/O Level syllabus 1119 English Language  Malaysia  Grade C or above 
Matriculation Certificate English  Malta  Grade C or above 
Cambridge Overseas School Certificate (COS) English  Mauritius  Grade C or above 
HIGCSE  Namibia  Grade C or 3, or above 
VWO, English  Netherlands  Grade 7 or above 
Vitemal  Norway  Grade 5 or above 
Matura, Advanced English Language  Poland  75% or above 
Diploma de Ensino Secundario  Portugal  Grade 16 or above 
Fullstandigt fran Gymnasieskolan, English  Sweden  Grade VG or C or above 
Maturita  Switzerland  Grade 5 or above 

1.8

To be registered for a taught postgraduate programme, a candidate shall hold a degree with first or second class honours or a higher degree of a University of the United Kingdom or of the Council for National Academic Awards, or an equivalent qualification.

In special cases the Head of Admissions may, on behalf of Senate, waive the requirement that a candidate shall have obtained the qualification stipulated above, but candidates without such a qualification shall be required to satisfy the department to which they are applying or otherwise be able to satisfy Senate that they are by virtue of previous training and experience or published work, qualified to pursue a postgraduate programme course of study.

English language requirements for all taught programmes of study

1.9

The following regulations apply for entry to the University from the 2018/19 academic year. For the regulations which apply for entry before that date please contact the Admissions Office.

1.10

All applicants should demonstrate their competency in English language by successfully completing one of the following:

  • (a) Secondary education in a country accepted as teaching in the medium of English. Please see the list of approved countries for details.
  • (b) At least one year of an undergraduate or higher degree education delivered in English by an awarding body whose home base is in a country accepted as teaching in the medium of English. Please see the list of approved countries for details.
  • (c) An accepted qualification in English language at a level specified for the subject area. Please see the list of approved qualifications for details.
  • (d) An accepted test in English language at a level specified for the subject area, within two years of the start date of the course. Please see the list of approved English language tests for details.
  • (e) An English language pre sessional course at the University of Leicester at a level specified for the subject area.
  • (f) The English Language assessment of foundation pathway providers at a level specified by the subject area, which are deemed by the University to be equivalent to the above.
  • (g) An undergraduate degree at one of the following Indian universities (including affiliated colleges)
    • (i) Anna University
    • (ii) Mumbai University
    • (iii) Pune University
    • (iv) Bangalore University
    • (v) University of Delhi
    • (vi) University of Madras
    • (vii) Indian University of Technology (IIM)
    • (viii) Indian Institutes of Technology (IIT)

1.11

Applicants may be asked to successfully pass a test which is set and marked by the University of Leicester at a level specified for the subject area.

1.12

List 1: Countries accepted as teaching in medium of English:

  • Anguilla
  • Antigua and Barbuda
  • Australia
  • Bahamas
  • Barbados
  • Belize
  • Bermuda
  • Botswana
  • British Virgin Islands
  • Canada
  • Cayman Islands
  • Christmas Island
  • Cocos Islands
  • Cook Islands
  • Dominica
  • Falkland Islands
  • Fiji
  • Gambia
  • Gibraltar
  • Grenada
  • Guyana
  • Ireland
  • Jamaica
  • Kenya
  • Lesotho
  • Malawi
  • Malta
  • New Zealand
  • Niue
  • Norfolk Islands
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Sierra Leone
  • Singapore
  • South Africa
  • St Kitts and Nevis
  • St Lucia
  • St Vincent and the Grenadines
  • Swaziland
  • Tanzania
  • Tonga
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Turks and Caicos Islands
  • Uganda
  • UK
  • USA
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe

1.13

List 2: English language requirement by subject area for students from countries not teaching in the medium of English (see List 3 for IELTS equivalencies):

Subject  IELTS  Additional requirements 
American Studies  6.5   
Archaeology and Ancient History  6.5   
Biological Sciences 6.5   
Chemistry 6.0   
Communications and Media  6.5   
Computer Science 6.0   
Criminology  6.5   
Economics  6.5   
Education  6.5   
Engineering  6.0   
English  6.5  At least 6.0 in each component score for MA Applied Linguistics with TESOL and MA TESOL 
Film Studies and Visual Arts  6.5   
Geography  6.5  At least 6.0 in each component score 
Geosciences  6.0   
Historical Studies  6.5   
History of Art  6.5   
Law (UG)  6.5  At least 6.0 in writing 
Law (PGT)  6.5  At least 6.0 in writing and a minimum of 5.5 in all other components 
Management  6.5   
Mathematics  6.0   
Medicine  7.5  At least 7.0 in each component score
Midwifery  7.0  At least 7.0 in each component score 
Modern Languages  6.5   
Nursing  7.0  At least 7.0 in each component score 
Operating Department Practice  6.5   
Physics and Astronomy  6.0   
Physiotherapy  7.0  At least 6.5 in each component score 
Politics and International Relations  6.5   
Psychology  6.5   
Sociology  6.5   

1.14

List 3: English Language equivalencies.

  IELTS (Academic) 
5.5  6.0 6.5 7.0 7.5
Tests  TOEFL iBT  70  80 90 100 110
Trinity College ISE  ISE II with Merit in all components  ISE II with Distinction in all components  ISE III with Pass in all components  ISE III with Merit in all components  N/A 
Pearson  46  54  61  68  68 
Cambridge CPE  Grade C Grade C  Grade C  Grade C  Grade C 
Cambridge CAE  Grade C  Grade C  Grade C  Grade B  Grade B 
TEEP  5.5  6.0 6.5 7.0 7.0
OIBEC  Pass  Pass  Pass  Pass  Pass 
ESOL Skills for Life  Level 1 Level 1 Level 2 Level 2 Level 2
Qualifications  GCSE English Language  C/4**  C/4**  C/4**  B/5**  B/5** 
A Level English Language  C C B B
AS Level English Language  C C B B
Cambridge O Level  C C B B
Cambridge international GCSE, English as a First Language (syllabus 0510)  B with at least 2 in oral and aural  B with at least 2 in oral and aural  B with at least 2 in oral and aural  A with at least 2 in oral and ural  A with at least 2 in oral and aural 
Cambridge international GCSE, English as a First language (syllabus 0522)  C C B B
Cambridge international GCSE, English as a Second Language (syllabus 0500)*  C with at least 2 in speaking and listening C with at least 2 in speaking and listening C with at least 2 in speaking and listening B with at least 2 in speaking and listening B with at least 2 in speaking and listening
Cambridge international GCSE, English as a Second Language (syllabus 0511)*  B B A A
SQA Scottish Advanced Higher or Higher in English  C C B B
SQA Scottish National 5 in English  C C B B
Irish Leaving Certificate  C (pre-2017), O4/H4 (2017 onwards)  C (pre-2017), O4/H4 (2017 onwards)  C (pre-2017), O3/H4 (2017 onwards)  B (pre-2017), O3/H3 (2017 onwards)  B (pre-2017), )3/H3 (2017 onwards) 
International Baccalaureate  Grade 4  Grade 4  Grade 4  Grade 5  Grade 5
European Baccalaureate  Grade 6  Grade 6 Grade 6 Grade 7 Grade 7
Indian National Board Standard XII  70% 70%  70% 80% 80%
Indian State Board Standard XII  80%  80% 80% 90% 90%
WASSCE English  C6  C6 C6 C4 C4 
NECO English Language  C6  C6 C6 B3 B3
Sri Lankan O Level in English  Credit  Credit Credit Distinction Distinction
HKDSE English Language  Grade 4  Grade 4  Grade 4 Grade 5 Grade 5
HKAL  C C B A
Austrian Matura/Reifeprufung  N/A  Grade 2  Grade 2  Grade 2  Grade 2 
Bruneian GCE/O Level 1120 syllabus  N/A  C B B
Bulgarian Diploma za sredno Obrazovani  N/A  Grade 5  Grade 5 Grade 5 Grade 5
Cameroon GCE O Level English  N/A  C B B
Danish Bevis for Studentereksam en  N/A  Grade 7  Grade 7 Grade 10 Grade 10
Finnish Ylioppilastutkinto  N/A  Grade 5  Grade 5  Grade 5  Grade 5 
French Baccalaureat L'option International English  N/A  Grade 12  Grade 12 Grade 12 Grade 12
French Baccalaureat General  N/A  Grade 14  Grade 14 Grade 14 Grade 14
German Abitur, English  N/A  Grade 12  Grade 12 Grade 13 Grade 13
Icelandic Studentsprof, Compulsory English  N/A  Grade 8  Grade 8 Grade 8 Grade 8
Luxembourg Diplome de Fin d'Etudes Secondaires  N/A  45 (bien)  45 (bien)  45 (bien)  45 (bien) 
Malaysian GCE O Level syllabus 1119 English Language  C B A A
Maltese Matriculation Certificate, English  N/A  C C B B
Mauritian Cambridge Overseas Schools (COS), English  N/A  C B B
Namibian HIGCSE  N/A  C or 3  C or 3 B or 2 B or 2
Dutch VWO, English  N/A  Grade 7  Grade 7  Grade 8 Grade 8
Norwegian Vitnemal  N/A  Grade 5  Grade 5  Grade 5 Grade 5
Portuguese Diploma De Ensino Secundario  N/A  Grade 16  Grade 16 Grade 16 Grade 16
Swedish Fullstandigt fran Gymnasieskolan, English  N/A  VG or C  VG or C  VG or B  VG or B 
Swiss Maturita  N/A  Grade 5  Grade 5  Grade 5  Grade 5 

* Not accepted for Medicine degrees
** 5 for Medicine degrees
*** 6 for Medicine degrees