What to do before you apply

Discover our top tips for things to do before you apply.

Find your programme

We offer over 100 master's programmes in a wide range of subject areas across our two campuses. Take a look through our list of programmes to find the right one for you.

Some questions that you might want to consider when deciding include:

  • what modules will I study?
  • what careers have graduates from this course gone on to do?
  • how will this programme support my personal and professional development?

Take care to pay attention to the entry requirements – most of our programmes will require you to have an undergraduate honours degree in a relevant qualification, while some will require work experience too.

Learn more about Loughborough

Join one of our postgraduate events to speak to our academic staff and ask any specific questions you may have about studying at Loughborough. You’ll also have an opportunity to speak to students who are currently studying at master’s level and meet our support services who can give you more advice on submitting your application.

If you are unable to attend our campus-based events* then there are still ways for you to come and explore our campuses, as you can take a tour of our Loughborough or London campus.

If you can't visit the campuses, you can join one of our web chats, where our staff and students will be on hand to answer your questions. Alternatively, you can take a virtual tour of the Loughborough or London campus.

If you're living outside of the UK, you will be pleased to know that our friendly International Office team regularly visit other countries to speak to future students*. Discover where they'll be here.

*Whilst we are currently unable to host campus-based events or travel during the global COVID-19 pandemic, we are hosting a variety of online events for you to engage with Loughborough University staff and current students.

Check the English language requirements

All students are required to meet a minimum standard of English language ability and some departments require a higher minimum level. See our list of English language requirements for more information.

Decide how you're going to finance your master's

Undertaking a postgraduate programme is incredibly rewarding but is a big commitment, so it's important to ensure that you have the funds to pay for your tuition fees and living costs. Take a look at our funding page to discover the sources of financial support available.

Frequently asked questions

When is the deadline for applying?

For programmes starting in October 2021, the last date on which we guarantee to consider applications and submitted results is 6 September 2021.

For programmes starting in January 2022, the last date on which we guarantee to consider applications and submitted results is 6 December 2021.

Any applications or results submitted after these dates will only be considered if there are still places on the programme and there is still time to obtain a student visa (if needed). High-demand programmes can reach their maximum offer limit some time before this date, so may stop making offers at an earlier point in the admissions process. This is particularly the case if the programme intake numbers are constrained by external accreditation. You are therefore recommended to submit your application as soon as possible so you are not disappointed.

Applicants for MA User Experience and Service Design and MSc User Experience Design from China should note special application deadline information here

There is no need for you to have completed your academic or English language qualifications before you apply - most students are made offers conditional on achieving particular grades in their degree and English language test.

What are the entry requirements for international students?

The entry requirements for our postgraduate degrees are listed within the individual programme descriptions.

From here, you can select your country/region to see the equivalent grade boundaries. More information on postgraduate qualification equivalencies for international students can be found here.

If you cannot find your country/region in the drop-down list, please email us with copies of your qualifications.

All applicants must meet the minimum English language requirements. Further details are available on our International Office website.

What are the English language requirements? What can I do if I haven't fully met these yet?

All students are required to meet a minimum standard of English language ability and some departments require a higher minimum level. See our list of English language requirements for more information. 

There is no need for you to have completed your English language qualifications before you apply – most students are made offers conditional on achieving particular grades in their English language test.

If you have not fully met the English language requirements asked for in your offer, it is possible that the school/department may allow you to take one of our English language pre-sessional programmes.

Not all schools/departments will allow students to take an English language pre-sessional programme, so you should check the guidance carefully.

I've completed my studies but haven't graduated yet

We realise that some universities don’t hold their graduation ceremonies until later in the year. We can accept a copy of your final transcript plus a letter from your university to confirm that you have completed your degree and giving your final grade. We call this an award letter and it replaces the degree certificate.

I'm applying via an agency – do I have to do anything differently?

Agents can provide advice and information on choosing a university and a programme, and help with practical aspects too, such as submitting your application and booking travel. You can find a list of the agents we work with here.

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.

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

A university may only sponsor you for a student visa (also known as the Student Route) on a second course at the same level in the UK if there is clear academic progression. To demonstrate this progression, the second course should be linked to the first and provide deeper specialisation into a subject. You should also be able to explain how the combination of programmes will support your career aspirations. If you wish to undertake a second postgraduate degree in the UK at Loughborough, your application will be carefully assessed and you may be asked to provide further information about your study and future career plans.

If you wish to progress from one postgraduate programme to another, you must be able to demonstrate that you have successfully completed your previous course before we may sponsor you under the student visa (also known as the Student Route) 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 we will be able to sponsor you under the student visa (also known as the Student Route) for that year.

I have multiple names, which should I use in my application?

You should use your full name, as it appears in your passport or birth certificate. If you only have a single name, rather than a forename(s) and a surname, as is typical in the UK, you should enter this in both the forename and surname fields of your application. Further guidance can be found in our student handbook.

What documents should I submit upon application?

Along with your references, we’ll also need copies of:

  • an academic transcript of your undergraduate degree showing the modules studied and marks achieved
  • a copy of your degree certificate, if you have already graduated
  • a personal statement

You can attach these to your application by uploading them in the application portal. If these documents are in your native language, you will need to supply copies in English language by an official translator.

What should I include in my personal statement?

The personal statement should explain your motivation for studying the programme, any relevant skills and experience you have (through studying or work), and your future career aspirations and how this programme will support you in achieving this. Remember to let your passion for the subject shine through!

Is there an application fee?

No, there is no fee for making an application, although international students requiring a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies for their Student Visa will have to pay a deposit of £2,500 before this can be issued.

Can I apply for more than one programme?

Yes, you can make multiple applications through the portal. You do not need to keep re-entering your personal details and once you have completed the first application, it is easy to add more. However, we recommend submitting a new personal statement that is tailored to each programme you are applying for.

How are applications assessed?

We consider a range of factors when considering applications, 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 your previous university
  • evidence of competence in English language
  • your personal statement
  • academic references from your current/previous 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.

Do both of my references need to be academic?

Your offer conditions may ask you to submit two satisfactory references. These should ideally be academic references, preferably from your most recent place of study. If it is impossible for you to obtain academic references, a reference from your employer may suffice. It is your responsibility to submit your references to the University, or arrange for your referees to send them to us directly.

What funding options are available for master's students?

To help support the financial costs of further study, there are a variety of options available to you.

Firstly, we have an Alumni Bursary, offering 10% off tuition fees for self-funding postgraduate taught students who are not in receipt of any other University award and obtained their previous degree from Loughborough University.

Most schools and departments also offer a number of postgraduate scholarships to students who have applied for a taught programme, with awards of up to 20% towards your tuition fees. Please see here for the scholarships available for students studying at the London campus.

Please note that these awards are not cumulative – you will automatically be awarded the single highest value bursary or scholarship for which you qualify.

Funding may also be available from your government, such as the UK Government Postgraduate Loan, offering up to £11,222 for UK students ordinarily resident in England looking to study a master’s programme at a UK university.

Scholarships may also be awarded by external organisations.

To check whether you are eligible to apply for these or to view your other funding options, please visit our website.

Some students choose to apply for part-time work to supplement their income. One of the most popular opportunities to do this is through the University’s Student Ambassador scheme which recruits students to help out at a wide range of events. Both the University and Students’ Union list a wide range of other vacancies, whilst our Careers Network can help you find and obtain part-time work.

If you are on a student visa, please be aware that there are strict rules governing how much you can work during your studies. Details can be found on our website.

How long does it take to get a decision on my application?

We try to reach a decision as soon as possible and you can help with this by including as much information as you can within your application. We normally aim to respond to an application within two to three weeks, although some programmes which require a portfolio or a proposal can take longer.

What is the difference between a conditional and unconditional offer?

If we have made you an unconditional offer, we are satisfied that you have met all of the entry requirements for your programme. Whilst we will not ask for further confirmation of your qualifications, we may ask you to prove you have your funding in place.

If you accept an unconditional offer, your status will be updated to 'Unconditional Firm' and you will be guaranteed a place on your programme.

If your place to study with us is conditional, your offer email will have included any academic or non-academic conditions that you will need to meet. When you have met the conditions of your offer, you can upload evidence of these to the application portal. Once all of your conditions have been met, your status will change to unconditional.

Example conditions include:

  • meet our English language requirements
  • provide one further satisfactory reference on official letterheaded paper
  • obtain an upper second-class honours degree

You don't need to wait until you've met all of your conditions before accepting your offer - you can do this at any time in the application portal and your status will be updated to conditional provisional.

How much is the CAS deposit and how do I pay?

You will need to pay £2,500 to confirm you will be studying at Loughborough University and want us to issue you with a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS). This is only required for students who need a CAS in order to apply for a student visa (also known as the Student Route).

You should pay your deposit through Flywire, a provider of global payment solutions. Flywire allows you to securely pay your deposit from overseas in over 140 currencies by bank transfer or international credit or debit card, and gives you the facility to track your payment from start to finish.

To access Loughborough's Flywire account, log in to the application portal, click on the programme that you wish to study with us and you will find a link to the deposit payment page.

As soon as your deposit payment details are passed to us from Flywire, we will start to prepare your CAS, provided the start date of your programme is less than four months away.

Will I need an ATAS Certificate?

If you are not a UK national or settled in the UK 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 more about ATAS certification here.

What are the University term dates?

Our term dates can be found here.