Coronavirus: Advice for applicants

We understand this is still a complex time for anyone arriving at or planning to apply for university. Find out all the information you need about coming to Sussex below.

Our response to Covid-19

Understandably, given the current pandemic, you may be wondering about our plans to ensure campus is a safe place to live and study.

The University is open and although life on campus is naturally different due to Covid-19, we are very fortunate to be surrounded by a National Park and we are close to beautiful coastal areas to explore.

As the lockdown restrictions change in the UK, we are hopeful that students joining Sussex in September 2021 will be able to enjoy so much of what our campus can offer.

Applications for September 2021

The new admissions cycle for entry in September 2021 is well underway and we are pleased to receive undergraduate, Masters and PhD applications.

We will be updating information about any changes to the 2021 admissions cycle below.

Undergraduate applications

We know you've had your education massively disrupted due to the global pandemic, that's why we've reduced our entry requirements for 2021.

For A-level students we have generally lowered our typical offers by one grade and our contextual offers by two grades, and we’ve made similar adjustments to other qualifications.

You can see our new requirements on each undergraduate course.

You can also browse our Foundation Year courses or find out more about our contextual offers.

Find answers to other questions you may have in our information for 2021 applicants.

Postgraduate applicants

We’re also very aware of the disruption to study at universities across the world. We know all institutions will be working to continue providing their usual high quality teaching, even if some of this is now remote. However, we are aware that this will impact on studies and so we are looking very carefully at each application and showing flexibility where we can.

You can see our requirements on each postgraduate course.

We will be mindful of the challenges all students are facing when we review results in the summer.

Find answers to other questions you may have in our information for 2021 applicants.

The student experience

You can find out lots of information about what the student experience has been at like at Sussex during the Autumn 2020 semester in this video.

Content in the following film was correct at time of publication in September 2020 but our health and safety measures are subject to the latest Government advice, national and regional lockdown restrictions, and other health and safety concerns, so may have changed.


How we are teaching is very much dependent on the current situation and UK Government advice and we publish the latest information to our current students on the Student Hub. We are delighted by the promising news about the vaccine rollout in the UK and hope that this will mean that we can return to delivering much of our teaching in the classroom.

Our aspiration is to give you as much real time teaching as possible, either in person or online. However the amount of teaching that we can deliver in person is subject to latest UK Government advice and other health and safety measures which the University must have in place to keep you safe, and may change during your time at Sussex.

Our goal is to deliver the best possible learning experience whilst ensuring everyone’s safety.

Find out more about our measures to keep campus safe at this time.

Information for applicants applying for September 2021

If you’re looking to join Sussex in September 2021 and are in the process of applying, we know you’ll have questions about the impact of coronavirus on our admissions process. We’ll be updating information below throughout the year so we’d recommend bookmarking this page for future reference.

Will there be changes to the way I apply due to coronavirus?

No, there are no changes to how you apply. However, there may be some changes to how you explore your options as the cycle progresses and we are very aware that the global pandemic continues to create lots of challenges for those studying at school, college and university.

If you are applying to an undergraduate degree then you will apply via UCAS. You can also find more information on our webpages about the application process.

To apply for postgraduate courses (both Masters and PhDs) you normally apply directly via the University’s postgraduate application system. We offer lots of advice about both applying for a Masters and a PhD.

How do I contact the Admissions team about my application?

The Admissions Office is working remotely at the moment as the University prioritises the use of the campus for those staff who have an essential role in teaching and supporting our students.

We are, however, maintaining our usual applicant services and the Admissions and Scholarships teams can be contacted by email or telephone as follows:

As we are physically away from the office at the moment, please avoid sending information to us in the post. Wherever possible please scan and email documents rather than mail them to us as we have difficulty accessing post at this time and it is delayed in reaching us.

Is the University planning to make changes to entry requirements in light of coronavirus?

The University has already taken the decision to adjust our 2021 Undergraduate offer levels in light of the ongoing challenges faced by students currently still in school and college.

We realise that, as you enter your final year of schooling, many of you have already had a very disrupted education and have spent much of 2020 learning from home. Although we hope that teaching returns to ‘normal’ this year, we decided in the summer of 2020 to adjust our offer levels for entry in 2021.

In most cases, this meant that our standard (‘typical’) offers were reduced by one grade and our contextual offers by one or two grades. Our course listings for 2021 show the new offer levels we will be using this cycle.

For postgraduate courses, we still expect a good result in your bachelor honours degree, but we do always look very carefully at all applications and we continue to review our requirements in light of the ongoing challenges faced by students across the globe. We are doing all we can to recognise the challenges faced by students across the world.

The latest information about our postgraduate entry requirements is shown in our Masters and PhD listings.

What happens now my summer exams have been cancelled?

We are obviously aware of the changes to how many of your qualifications will be assessed this summer and we will also be very aware of the challenges that all students are facing (and have faced) through these unprecedented times. For most qualifications, we are still expecting students to receive a final award (even if the way it is assessed, and how the final grade allocated, is different to normal). If you are still expecting to receive the qualification required in the conditions of your offer and will be allocated with a final grade or mark then we will consider these results as awarded.

We appreciate that other countries and awarding bodies may also be revisiting how they allocate results in an on-going pandemic.

We want to reassure you that in these very uncertain times, our Admissions policies (both Undergraduate and Postgraduate) will reflect the challenging situations that you may be experiencing.

If you know that your qualification will no longer be awarded (or if your results will be delayed beyond the end of August), please do contact our Admissions Office so that we can advise further:

What will teaching be like in September 2021?

In September 2021, the University hopes that most teaching will be delivered in-person on campus. If for any reason the University decides to offer blended learning, with some teaching online, then it will do so. We know that many students have enjoyed elements of their learning online over the past year, and we will be looking at how we can incorporate some of the best online experiences into the curriculum – where this adds to our students’ learning. The University continues to offer a number of online masters courses that are 100% online and you can find more information on these courses here.

Useful links

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Contact us

For general queries, ask us a question online or email

If you have questions about your application, please contact Admissions on:

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