Postgraduate study

Application information for international students.

How to apply: guidance for international students

All students apply in the same way, regardless of whether they are located in the UK or overseas, but we understand that students who are moving to England to study at Loughborough University, or our London campus, may have additional questions.

How do I find out more about the opportunities available at Loughborough University?

You can find a list of all our taught programmes and research opportunities in our postgraduate prospectus. More information about studying at Loughborough can be found on our International Office’s website. Our friendly International Office team are here to support you through the process of applying to Loughborough, right up to arriving here and settling in.

I am thinking of applying via an agency – do I have to do anything differently?

Advice on working with an education agent to help plan your studies can be found on the Education UK website, along with a list of British Council certified agencies. Agents can provide advice and information, and help with practical aspects too, such as submitting your application and booking travel.

You’ll apply to the university in the same way, you just need to tick a box to confirm you are using an agent, and give us their contact details.

What are the English Language requirements?

Our standard English language requirements can be found here. Please be aware that some of our programmes have higher requirements, so we recommend checking the individual programme details carefully prior to submitting an application.

How do I apply for a visa?

Guidance on applying for a visa can be found here. On this website you can check the type of visa you require, the visa application fee and an online form to complete. You’ll also be able to find a list of the documents you will need to provide, and the locations of local visa application centres.

Before applying for your visa you will need a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) from the University. The CAS statement gives information on the course you have been accepted onto, what level it is, how long it lasts, what the tuition fees are and what documents the University used to accept you.

When will I receive my Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS)?

If you are a new student applying for a new visa to study with us, you will be provided with a CAS once you have meet the full conditions of your offer and confirmed how you will be funding your studies.

You cannot use the CAS to apply for a visa earlier than three months before your start date, so we normally start to issue CAS from May onwards for those students starting studies in the autumn.

What other documents do I need to submit?

We’ll give you a list of the documents you need to provide to us when we make your offer. Usually, this will include your certificates and/or transcripts for the qualifications you have already achieved, or are studying towards, and your English language qualification.

Additional documents to support your visa application will vary according to your circumstances, including the subject you are applying to study. Find out more here.

What are the key dates in the application process?

Applications should be submitted by 6 September in the year of entry. Some programmes fill up quickly, so we recommend that you submit your application as soon as possible so you are not disappointed.

Once we make your offer, we request that you reply promptly with your decision, and upload any outstanding documents such as certificates and transcripts without delay, so that we can process your application quickly.

For taught programmes, the necessary documents to meet all offer conditions should normally be submitted by 6 September of the admissions cycle in which you have applied. Documents that are submitted after this date will be only considered if places are still available on the relevant programme and/or there is sufficient time for a student visa to be obtained.

Deadlines do apply to our studentship vacancies, for PhD study, so please check these carefully before applying.

You can register online to apply for University Halls of Residence accommodation from April onwards. In June, once your academic place is confirmed we will contact you with an offer of accommodation. You are required to accept this offer within eight days from the date of the email to ensure your accommodation is secured.

We will send your CAS, by email, from May onwards. Applying for your visa and any other documents is a priority as during busy periods these can take a number of weeks to be processed.

If you wish to book your onward transport to our campuses from Heathrow airport, you should do this at least two weeks before you are due to arrive.

What are the entry requirements for international students?

The entry requirements to our postgraduate degrees are listed within the individual programme descriptions. Our entry requirements are listed using standard UK undergraduate degree classifications (i.e. First Class honours, Upper Second, Lower Second).

Guidance on international equivalences to entry requirements may be found on our International Office website.

How are applications assessed by the University?

When assessing applications, the University considers a range of factors, including:

  • average marks, a GPA or final grade from prior degree-level studies (whether completed or still incomplete at time of applying)
  • marks or grades achieved for individual subjects or modules taken, particularly where they provide an important foundation for further study at postgraduate level
  • the ranking or reputation of the your previous university
  • evidence of competence in English language
  • your personal statement
  • academic references from two members of staff from your current university
  • for some programmes, work experience or a professional qualification may be required in addition to an academic qualification
  • for some programmes, a portfolio, example of written work, or evidence of practical skills are required     

The grade equivalences listed should be interpreted as a general indication of the marks required to gain entry. Due to the range of factors considered when assessing an application, it is impractical to adhere to exact percentage requirements or equivalences between marks gained in different countries.

Can I apply for a Master’s degree if I have already studied for one in the UK?

A university may only sponsor a student on a Tier 4 visa on a second course at the same level in the UK if there is clear academic progression. To demonstrate academic progression second course should be linked to the first and provide deeper specialisation into a subject. The student should also be able to explain how the combination of programmes will support their career aspirations. Students who wish to undertake a second postgraduate degree in the UK at Loughborough University will have their application carefully assessed, and may be asked to provide further information about their study and future career plans.

Students who wish to progress from one postgraduate programme to another must be able to demonstrate that they have successfully completed their previous course before the University can sponsor them under Tier 4 for the new programme. If written evidence of successful completion is not available prior to the start date of the new programme, it is unlikely that the University will be able to sponsor them under Tier 4 for that year.

If I am made an offer, am I required to pay a deposit to secure my place?

We do not have a compulsory tuition fee deposit, but students may make an optional tuition fee deposit of £2,500.  Payment of a deposit allows you to show early commitment to the University and may help with your student visa application.  The tuition fee deposit is non-refundable; the only exception to this is if your visa application is refused.  

You should therefore not make a payment until you have met all the conditions of your offer and firmly accepted your place.

If I choose to make a deposit, how do I pay it?

Payment can be made by cheque, credit or debit card, bank transfer or bankers draft.  A bankers draft must be payable in sterling and drawn on a UK bank account.

If you pay a tuition fee deposit, this will be indicated on your Confirmation of Acceptance to Study (CAS).  

What happens if I pay a deposit, but then don’t take up my place?

The tuition fee deposit is non-refundable except if your visa application is refused and you are unable to enter the UK.  If this occurs we will refund the deposit but will deduct an administrative charge of £50.  In order to apply for a refund you will need to inform us, in writing, that your visa application has been refused and send us a copy of your “Refusal of Entry Clearance” document by 31st December in the year in which you were due to start your course.   If you defer your entry after paying your commitment deposit, your commitment deposit will be returned to you, minus a £50 administration fee.  It will be your responsibility to make a new commitment deposit the following year if you take up your place.

Will I need an ATAS Certificate?

If you are a national of a non-EU or EEA country and plan to undertake postgraduate study in the UK in certain science, engineering or technology subjects, you will need an ATAS certificate before you can apply for a Visa or Entry Clearance.  This will be clarified in your offer. Find out about ATAS certification.