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University of Bath

Study at Bath after a break from education

If you're 21 or over and thinking about studying an undergraduate degree, find out how to apply for our courses as a mature student.

A mature student participating in a weekly seminar
Mature students apply to study at the University in the same way as any other applicants

We welcome applications from mature students, and we really value the additional life and work experience that students are often able to bring to our courses.

We will consider you as a mature student if you are 21 years old or over when you start your course. You might be applying to university after a break, or taking a slightly different route to get to university, but you will still need to apply through UCAS where you will find specific guidance for mature applicants.

Qualifications we accept

We want to ensure that you are prepared for the academic demands of our courses and so we advise that all students joining the University have completed some recent and relevant study within the three years prior to starting their degree. This is to make sure that everyone joining our courses is prepared to cope with and enjoy the academic challenges that this brings.

We very much take a holistic approach when assessing a UCAS application, with all elements – academic history, predicted grades, personal statement and academic reference – being taken into account. Applicants apply to Bath from a wide variety of different routes and when assessing your academic performance, we do so in light of the context in which you have been studying.

We consider a variety of qualifications, including the Access to HE Diploma and Open University credits. Each of our courses has different entry requirements, and you can find full details on our course pages. For some courses, you'll also need to meet additional requirements such as GCSE grades.

If you are considering studying an Access course or modules with the Open University, it is advisable to check our course pages to ensure you are studying subjects and units that will meet our typical entry requirements. We may also be able to consider alternative Open University units to those listed.

If you are unsure if your qualifications (achieved or pending) are suitable for progression to the University of Bath and would like further clarification, please email our Progression Team maturestudents@bath.ac.uk with the syllabus/module information, detailing the full list of credits and units you will be studying.

It would be helpful if you can also include in your email information about any other Level 2 (GCSE or equivalent), Level 3 (A level or equivalent) or university level qualifications you hold, plus scanned copies of any relevant certificates and academic transcripts.

Talk to us about applying by emailing maturestudents@bath.ac.uk

Preparing your application

You should complete all sections of the UCAS form. You need to include details of all qualifications, even if you achieved these a long time ago.

You will also have the opportunity to provide your full employment history in the 'Details of paid employment to date' section. You should include reasons for gaps in employment (like travel or unemployment) even if these do not appear relevant to the application.

We have guides on the UCAS process and writing a personal statement that you can use to help you with your application.

In addition to assessing your academic history and any pending qualifications, we would also be looking in detail at your personal statement and taking into account any relevant experiences mentioned. This would be a good opportunity for you to explain all of the additional experience that you have obtained since you left school, and how this has informed your decision to study your chosen course at university.

For some of our courses, we will invite you to attend an interview if you are studying a qualification that is harder for us to assess on paper as to whether or not we are able to make you an offer. For example, if you are studying an Access to HE Diploma, a BTEC Extended Diploma or another non-traditional qualification. We may also invite you to attend an interview if you have had a less typical educational history or a gap in study, which means we are unable to consider your application using our normal criteria.

Academic reference

As part of the application, you will be asked to supply an academic reference from a teacher or tutor associated with your recent study. If you can't get one, we may consider a detailed reference from an employer.

Read the UCAS guide for mature undergraduate students

Bursaries and scholarships

We offer a range of scholarships and bursaries to support our students to meet the costs of undergraduate study.

Discover how we can support you in your studies

Steph's story

Supporting your academic and personal progress

At Bath, you get advice, support and guidance on a personal level to help you stay focused so that you can study to the best of your ability.

If you have children you may be able to use our on-campus nursery. It has 48 places available for children of students and staff.

If you are a student and have children, our Student Parents webpage offers some useful guidance and further links to additional support available.