Entry requirements for UK applicants

We are looking for bright, enthusiastic and motivated students to join our undergraduate community. We accept a range of UK qualifications, and consider wider experience when offering places.

Students in a seminar at the University of Sussex

UK, Channel Islands and Isle of Man

If you are a recent school or college leaver, you will need to have at least the University's general entry requirement of two A-levels (or equivalent). 

For most courses, you need more than this minimum requirement and most successful applicants will have at least three A-levels (or equivalent).

Our standard offer levels are listed with each of our undergraduate courses. You will also need to meet any specific subject requirements (such as A-levels, GCSEs or equivalent qualifications).

You would also be expected to demonstrate a broad educational background in both numeracy and competence in English. For UK students, this will normally mean a good range of GCSEs (grades A* to C, or 4 to 9 in the new grading structure) including both English and Mathematics. 

If you are a mature student, see our advice for applying to Sussex.

If you are an international student, see our international qualifications.


A-level applicants 

You are normally expected to have at least three A-levels. 

 If you are taking both A-levels and BTEC qualifcations, see BTEC and OCR qualifications.

  • General studies a-level

    We accept all A-levels, including General Studies. However, the General Studies A-level is not accepted for Medicine, which is taught at Brighton and Sussex Medical School (BSMS).

    You would normally have General Studies as a fourth additional A-level, rather than one of your three subjects.

  • specific a-levels 

    There are some courses that require particular A-levels. You can see which A-levels you need in the entry requirements section for each of our undergraduate courses. You must have these particular A-levels. However, we do not have 'preferred' A-levels and would encourage you to take the subjects where you feel you will achieve the best results.

  • a-level resits

    We are happy to consider you if you are re-sitting your A-levels to improve your overall grades.

  • assessing your application

    Our standard offers are shown with each undergraduate course in terms of three A-level grades. We do however review each application on its individual strengths and merits and will take into account the full array of qualifications being presented (including additional AS-levels or the Extended Project Qualification).

    We do vary some offers to take into account other information about you, such as your background, the school you attend, and any challenges you have faced.

    Many of our standard offers are presented as offer ranges, for example, AAB - ABB. This is to give you an idea of the sort of grades we expect. When we are reviewing applications, we will look for evidence of your potential to achieve at this level. We look at each application individually. 

  • reformed and unreformed a-levels

    Between September 2015 and 2017, AS and A-levels in England will become separate qualifications and AS-level grades will no longer count towards the full A-level.

    As A-levels are reformed in England, we recognise that you may or may not be applying with AS-level results. We understand that some schools and applicants will no longer take AS-level examinations. In this transition period, we will not favour either reformed or old style A-levels and you will not be disadvantaged if you do not have AS-level results when you apply. 

    SCIENCES

    Practical skills are an important part of our science-based courses. If you are applying for a degree in our School of Life Sciences, we would expect you to pass the practical element of the most relevant reformed science A-level(s). This will normally be a condition of your offer. For more information see the entry requirements listed for each of our undergraduate courses.

  • Extended project qualification 

    We take the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) into account when considering your application and it can be useful in the summer when your results are released if you have narrowly missed the conditions of your offer.

    You would normally be taking the EPQ as an additional qualification to enhance your three or more A-levels.

    We do not routinely include the EPQ in the conditions of your offer, but we do sometimes offer alternative conditions that include the EPQ (perhaps with a slight reduction in your A-level grades). You can contact admissions to discuss this.

    If you are taking the EPQ, you may also find it useful to include information about it in your Personal Statement. Some of the best personal statements include details of research undertaken in the EPQ.

Other UK qualifications accepted by Sussex

Find your qualification below. If you do not see your qualification listed visit international qualifications.

  • Access to Higher Education (HE) Diploma

    Typical offer: 45 credits at Level 3 with at least 30 credits at Distinction, and 15 credits at Merit. The diploma must normally be in a relevant subject. Some courses may require specific units and grades.

    Find the entry requirements for your undergraduate course   

    Compare your qualification with our A-level offer:

    UK A-level grades              Access to Higher Education Diploma
    AAA Pass Access to HE Diploma with 45 credits at Level 3, including at least 30 at Distinction and the remaining 15 at Merit                                                                                                              
    AAB Pass Access to HE Diploma with 45 credits at Level 3, including at least 30 at Distinction and the remaining 15 at Merit
    ABB Pass Access to HE Diploma with 45 Level 3 credits at Merit or above, including 24 at Distinction
    BBB Pass Access to HE Diploma with 45 Level 3 credits at Merit or above, including 24 at Distinction
  • BTEC and OCR qualifications

    We will consider you if you are taking BTEC or OCR qualifications (either on their own or combined with A-levels). You need to be studying the equivalent of at least three A-levels (in terms of learning hours).  

    We accept:

    • Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma (and the former BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma (QCF) or BTEC National Diploma (NQF))
    • Pearson Level 3 National Diploma (and the former BTEC Level 3 Diploma (QCF) or BTEC National Certificate (NQF)) when combined with either an A-level or a  Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate (or former BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma)
    • Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Foundation Diploma (or the former BTEC Level 3 90-credit Diploma (QCF)) alongside at least two A-levels
    • Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate (or the former Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma (QCF) or BTEC National Awards (NQF)) alongside at least two A-levels
    • OCR National Certificate and National Diploma (normally in combination with A-levels) and the OCR National Extended Diploma.

    You need to check our undergraduate courses for any specific requirements. For example, we may expect your Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma to be in a particular subject, or you may need to combine your BTEC or OCR qualification with a particular A-level. 

    You must meet any GCSE requirements set out in the entry requirement section of our undergraduate courses, regardless of how strong your BTEC results are. For all courses you need a broad range of GCSEs (grades A* to C).

    Compare your qualification with our A-level offer:

     AAAAABABBBBBCCC
    PEARSON BTEC LEVEL 3 NATIONAL EXTENDED DIPLOMA DDD DDD DDM DDM DMM
    PEARSON BTEC LEVEL 3 NATIONAL DIPLOMA AND ONE A-LEVEL

    DD and A

    DD and A

    DM and A

    DM and B

    DM and C

    PEARSON BTEC LEVEL 3 NATIONAL EXTENDED CERTIFICATE AND TWO A-LEVELS

    Distinction and AA

    Distinction and AB

    Distinction and BB

    Merit and AB

    Merit and CC

  • Cambridge Pre-U Diploma

    We accept: the full Diploma or principal subjects from the Diploma combined with A-levels. You need to be studying the equivalent (in learning hours) of at least three A-levels.

    Find the entry requirements for your undergraduate course 

    Compare your qualification with our A-level offer:

     AAAAABABBBBBCCC
    CAMBRIDGE PRE-U PRINCIPAL SUBJECT AND TWO A-LEVELS D3 and AA D3 and AB M2 and AB M2 and BB M3 and CC
    TWO CAMBRIDGE PRE-U PRINCIPAL SUBJECTS AND ONE A-LEVEL

    D3, M1 and AA

    D3, M2 and A

    M2, M2 and A

    M2, M2 and B

    M3, P1 and C

    THREE CAMBRIDGE PRE-U PRINCIPAL SUBJECTS

    D3, D3 and M2

    D3, M1 and M2

    D3, M2 and M2

    M2, M2 and M2

    M3, M3 and P1

  • European Baccalaureate (EB)

    The European Baccalaureate (EB) entry requirements are listed with each of our undergraduate courses.

  • International Baccalaureate Diploma

    The typical offers for the full International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma are listed with each of our undergraduate courses.

    You will normally be expected to complete the full IB diploma (rather than individual IB certificates). 

  • Open University (OU)

    Typical offer: 60 credits at level 1 for first-year entry. You may be able to transfer directly into the second year if you have 120 or more credits. Not all of our courses accept applications for direct entry into the second year.

    Find the entry requirements for your undergraduate course 

    Find out more about transferring to Sussex

  • Scottish Highers and Advanced Highers

    Typical offer: at least five Highers to be considered for first-year entry. However, in areas where we have a specific A-level subject requirement, we would normally expect you to have taken the  Advanced Higher in this subject.

    Find the entry requirements for your undergraduate course

    Compare your qualification with our A-level offer: 

    UK A-level gradesScottish Highers
    AAA AAAAA                                                                                                              
    AAB AAAABB
    ABB AABBBB
    BBB BBBBBB
    CCC CCCCCC
  • Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Diploma

    Typical offer: Core certificate and grades A-B in A-level options.

    Find the entry requirements for your undergraduate course

    Compare your qualification with our A-level offer:

    UK A-level gradesWelsh Baccalaureate Advanced Diploma and two A-level grades
    AAA Grade A and AA                                                                                                              
    AAB Grade B and AA
    ABB Grade B and AB
    BBB Grade B and BB
    CCC Grade C and CC

Qualifications counted as equivalent to GCSE

If you need specific GCSEs for your chosen course, you must have a grade C or above in the subjects required, unless otherwise stated.

We also accept:

  • International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE) - passes at grade C or above
  • General Certificate of Education (GCE) O-level - passes at grade C or above
  • Certificate of Secondary Education (CSE) - passes at grade 1
  • Certificate of Extended Education (CEE) - passes at grades 1, 2 and 3.

Find out if you need GCSEs for your undergraduate course


Interviews and workshops

For the following courses an interview, portfolio review or workshop normally forms part of the selection process:

If you meet the initial selection criteria you would normally be required to take part in this additional selection process. However, you could still be asked to attend an interview as part of the selection process for our other courses.

Interviews, portfolio reviews and workshops normally take place between December and April.

If you do not live in the UK, where possible you are interviewed by phone or online via Skype.



You might also be interested in: