ip target image
You are currently browsing our site with content tailored to students in your country

Our cookies

We use cookies to offer you a better browsing experience with personalized content, relevant ads and enhanced functionalities. By allowing all you agree to the use of cookies as per the cookie policy and remember you can manage your preferences anytime.
The basics
THE UK: Applying to University

What an admissions officer looks for in an application

Getting your university application right is critical, so it's always going to help getting some inside information on how to be make the best impression.

Writing a university application

Have you been wondering what admissions officers and those reviewing your university application look for? You’ve probably spent a bit of time thinking about what to include and what to say. We went behind the scenes of the application process and spoke to an International Liaison Officer to get the inside information for you. 



Stand out 

Admissions officers read thousands of applications a year, which means they can begin to look very similar. It’s essential that you include something with your application that makes you stand out, apart from just your grades. Admissions officers are on the lookout for well-rounded applicants who are able to display their personality and character. You need to make the admissions officer feel excited to meet you and that they can’t turn your application down. 



Accurate information 

With a large volume of applications to deal with and not a lot of time to dedicate to each one, you’ll need to make a good first impression. A useful tip is to include only the most essential information, making your application as succinct and clear as possible.  Admissions officers concur that the best applications and personal statements are concise and to the point, giving a clear picture as to why you want to study a course or at a particular institution.  It’s a good idea to put together a list of priorities before making your application, admissions officers will not search for information that you haven’t included.  Admissions officers really appreciate you taking the time and effort to ensure that all the information in your application is accurate. It does increase your chance of meeting with a favourable response. 




Admissions officers do check your academic references and this is why it’s key to have them included with your application. They are read in conjunction with your grades and therefore having up to date and accurate information is essential. Remember that if you don’t have the grades for the course you wish to study, the academic references you have will not alter the outcome of your application. Admissions officers make detailed checks of colleges and institutions from around the world to ensure that they are legitimate and registered. It really does matter that you include information that is correct. Consider the fact that it could be the difference between you and another candidate. 



Why this university 

When you are putting together your application it’s important that you’re able to convey the reason you’ve chosen an institution or destination. Combined with this should be a sound motivation for the subject or programme you have selected.  Do your research into the institution and what makes it stand out, perhaps a famous alumni or a notable member of faculty. It’ll demonstrate your initiative and show that you’ve made an effort. Admission officers note that they often receive a very brief or short explanation as to why students wish to study in a country, often unrelated to the institution or course of study. Don’t fall into this trap. The person reading your application may think that you’re simply looking to come as a tourist with only a fleeting interest in academic pursuits. Admission officers greatly appreciate a well-researched, thoughtful and professional application.



Study in the UK


'Study in the UK' eBook

Enjoy what you’ve read? We’ve condensed the above popular topics about studying in the UK into one handy digital book.

Get your eBook

Must read

article Img

Understanding the Undergraduate Grading System in the UK

The British undergraduate degree classification system is a university grading scheme for undergraduate degrees (bachelor's degrees and integrated master's degrees) in the UK. It has been applied in other countries, with slight variations. When applying to study for an undergraduate degree in the UK, many students are not aware that they have an option to study for a regular degree or a degree with honours. The latter is the most popular degree applied for in

article Img

Are international students eligible for Clearing?

As an international student, it’s possible that you may have heard of a process called clearing. Although you may be aware of it, it may also be true that you’re not entirely sure what clearing is or how it relates to you. We’re here to take you through all aspects of the process, demystify any preconceptions that you may have and equip you with all the necessary knowledge should you go through clearing yourself.   What is clearing?  First

article Img

University applications: An admission officers top tips

As an international student getting to grips with the application process can sometimes seem like an uphill battle. You may not be sure what to include with your application, how long it will take to hear back from a university and how best to increase the chances of making a positive impact on the person evaluating your application. With this in mind we decided to pick the brains of those making the decisions, admissions officers. We give you exclusive access to