City uses contextual admissions to take into account varying individual circumstances and institutional barriers faced by applicants during the application process.
At City we want all students with the academic potential, motivation, and commitment to be able to access and succeed on our courses. We know that some of you will face circumstances during your education that will impact your grades.
To address this, when we assess your application, we will consider your qualifications alongside other information on your Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) form and in some cases, this will mean you will receive a reduced grade offer from us. This is called a contextual offer.
A contextual offer is a reduction of up to two grades below our standard entry requirements. You can find information on standard entry requirements on our course pages.
Eligibility for contextual offers
To be eligible for a contextual offer you must be:
- A United Kingdom (UK) Home student
- Applying for the first year of an undergraduate degree through UCAS (foundation courses are not included).
You must also meet one or more of the following criteria:
Been in local authority care
Having spent three months or more in local authority care. You can find out more about the support we offer to applicants and students who have been in care by visiting our City Cares pages.
This information is taken from your UCAS application form, so if you are a care leaver it is important that you declare this in your application.
Living in an area where young people are least likely to go onto higher education
Your postcode shows that you live in an area with low progression rates to higher education as measured by POLAR4. You would be eligible if you live in Quintile 1 or 2.
You can check this on the Office for Students website using your postcode.
Attended a lower performing school or college
A lower-performing school/college is where their performance places it in the lowest 20% for average QCA points per A-level student (or equivalent) in England, Wales or Northern Ireland as identified by the Department for Education and provided via UCAS.
Read a full list of schools eligible for the contextual offers scheme.
First generation in your family to go to University
If you are the first generation of your family to enter Higher Education you will qualify for a contextual offer (this does not apply to applicants applying for a course in the City Law School or the School of Health and Psychological Sciences).
This information is provided to us by UCAS, as part of your application form.
If you are studying for A-levels you will receive a contextual offer:
- Two grades lower than our advertised entry requirements if you meet criteria A OR criteria B and C
- One grade below our advertised entry requirements if you meet criteria B or C.
If you are studying a BTEC* or International Baccalaureate qualification you will receive a single grade reduction if you meet any of the above criteria.
* BTEC students applying for course in Bayes Business School will not be eligible for a contextual offer.
How to apply for a contextual offer
If you are eligible for a contextual offer this will usually be made automatically using the information you provided on your UCAS form. However, we may need to verify some of the information with you directly.
We cannot offer grade adjustments for part-time studies, deferred applicants or those who enter through Clearing.
It is also likely contextual offers will see further changes as we look to incorporate the latest in policy suggestions from across the sector and review feedback and outcomes from our students and applicants.
We will update these pages when these plans are confirmed.
The University will ensure that all entry requirements are appropriate for the academic needs of the programmes and for the students the University seeks to attract.
We reserve the right to add restrictions for the subject in which a grade could be dropped and some specific programmes may have grade requirements that cannot be altered.
Below is information on some of the funding options and support available to you if you chose to study at City.