Advice for mature learners
We are delighted to welcome and support mature students and have a long tradition of doing so. Starting at university as a mature learner may seem daunting, but it's important to remember you are not alone. UEL provides a wide range of support to help you navigate your way through your university experience with guidance, advice and practical assistance.
STUDYING AS A MATURE STUDENT
We understand that some applicants might have had breaks in their education for various reasons, and we want mature students to excel at UEL. Some mature students come to us as at the start of their higher education journey, holding few or no qualifications, and progress to a degree course in their chosen subject taking one of our pre-entry programmes or an Access to HE diploma.
Other students come wanting to change their career or prepare for promotion by taking up postgraduate study. Mature students are just like you leading busy lives with other responsibilities such as work, parenting and caring, but are thinking of returning to education to gain new knowledge or skills, get a professional qualification or simply study a subject of interest - we can help you to be successful.
What is a 'mature' student?
'Mature' means that you are over 21 when you start your course. More than half of our students who enrol at UEL each year are mature students.
HOW CAN WE HELP?
Our qualified and friendly advisers are currently available to give you information, advice and guidance by email and telephone. Send us your enquiry below and we will call you at a convenient time to talk through your interests and options. We will be happy to see you in person as well at University Square Stratford or the Barking Learning Centre. Send us your enquiry today.
What can you expect from the University of East London Advice service? We are here to listen to your ideas and answer your questions to help you get ahead with your plans for higher education. Whether this is your first step in exploring if university is for you, or checking if you have the right qualifications from the UK or overseas for the course you are interested in, we welcome your enquiry. Get in touch with us today and let us help you.
Advice for mature students
The University of East London provides free and impartial advice and guidance for mature students from a team of qualified, experienced, and friendly advisers – the Mature Information Service. Our advisers will listen to your ideas and aspirations, answer your questions and help you to realise your plans to come to university. Whether this is your first step, exploring if university is for you, or checking if you have the right qualifications from the UK (or overseas) for the course you are interested in, we welcome your enquiry.
Advice and Support
Our advisers will listen to your ideas and aspirations, answer your questions and help you to realise your plans to come to university.
Practise a mock interview for a professional course such as nursing.
Funding your studies
Assess if the qualifications you have now are what’s required or if you need to do some other study first.
Choose your course
Whether this is your first step, exploring if university is for you, or checking if you have the right qualifications from the UK (or overseas) for the course you are interested in.
Our Pre Entry Programmes
Would you like to study for a university degree but don’t have the necessary qualifications? Maybe you have been away from full-time education for a long time?
Have a look at our pre entry programmes to find the right course for you.
Foundation students join the Level 3 programme for the first year of study towards a Bachelor's degree. UEL is proud to be one of a limited number of institutions that offer the Foundation route into Higher Education.
New Beginnings is a unique course that offers access to many degree programmes for mature learners and those without formal qualifications.Read more
Law Short Course
The Introduction to Law Short Course allows mature learners without traditional qualifications to access UEL and study one of our LLBs.Read more
Get Into Nursing
Our Get Into Nursing short course is perfect for those that don't have the right qualifications, but have relevant work experience in care and an interest in a nursing career.Find out more
Our experienced and qualified IAG advisers are trained to answer your questions and to help you make plans that will work for you. Here are some of the questions you have asked.
I am thinking of a career change. What qualifications do I need to get on a degree course?
This depends on your individual situation and what you want to study. We can help you review what you already have and what you might need to meet the requirements for courses. For example, maybe start with a short course that gives you the foundation to then start your degree. Your previous qualifications may be enough to get you on to a postgraduate course.
I left school with no qualifications. Can I come to university?
In the IAG service we see very many people come back to education after time away either working or raising a family. The good news is that there are options open to you to get you ready to study for a degree course. For example, Pre-entry programmes at the University of East London, Access to Higher Education courses at further education colleges or a preparatory or foundation year of a degree course. Why not speak to an adviser to find out more?
What types of degree courses are there?
Undergraduate degrees, also known as Bachelor or first degrees, can be 3 years (or 4 years with a Foundation year). There are also some 4 year degrees that include a postgraduate award such as an MSc (quite common for subjects like engineering).
After a first degree, it is possible next to do a Master's degree, normally 1 or 2 years long. Beyond an MA/MSc there is research and perhaps a PhD degree.
I'm not sure if I can afford university. How do the fees and funding work?
Funding depends on your circumstances but normally UK and EU applicants can get a tuition fee loan (paid directly to your university) for one undergraduate degree. In addition, UK applicants can apply for a repayable maintenance loan. Other arrangements apply to international students who pay their own fees and living costs. Some bursaries and scholarships are available - check if you're eligible.
How do I apply?
For full-time undergraduate courses you apply through UCAS (University and Colleges Admissions Service). This service sends your application to up to 5 universities on your behalf. Register with UCAS, fill in a form and write a personal statement before submitting your application. See: www.ucas.com/undergraduate
For most postgraduate courses apply directly to the university except for Teacher Training (UCAS) and some professional courses. You can apply for preparatory courses at the University of East London such as Get into Nursing, Introduction to Law or New Beginnings by contacting the IAG service who will help you apply.
I am confused about which course I should study?
Why not talk to an adviser who can help you consider your options? Consider whether you want to study something you know and have enjoyed or opt for something new and unfamiliar. Do you want a work-related degree - accounting, engineering, nursing, physiotherapy, social work etc, or to use a degree to make a career change?
Check courses on our course finder page and explore careers information on the Prospects website.
GET IN TOUCH
If you would like to speak to someone, our team of qualified advisers work at USS (link) and the Barking Learning Centre (link) and can provide advice over the telephone on, 020 8223 4354 or by email at email@example.com. You can also request a call back. If you live in or near London, we encourage you to visit us in person. We are also present at UEL open days and evenings.
Book a free consultation with our qualified and friendly advisers.
Contact an adviser for your personalised, 1-2-1 information, advice and guidance interview. To give you the best possible service we need some information to tailor our guidance to your unique situation so complete our client form (it only takes two minutes), and we will call you for a discussion at a convenient time for you.
- Free impartial information, advice and guidance
- Choose the best programme for your career aspirations
- Get guidance on writing an effective personal statement
- Speak with friendly and highly experienced advisors
- Free 1-2-1 phone or email consultations
Book a free consultation with our qualified and friendly advisers.
SPEAK TO ONE OF OUR ADVISORS
If you have any questions about your options, whether starting university or what course is best for you, help is at hand. Contact our information advice and guidance team to discuss your options.
Levan - New Beginnings
‘It’s always been my ambition to be a choreographer but there hasn’t always been a roadmap.' - Levan Peart
New Beginnings is a unique course that offers access to many degree programmes for mature learners and those without formal qualifications.
Whatever career path you decide is for you, join us today and #BeTheChange
Natasha – Introduction to Law
‘All these people are going to think that law is not a career for me because lawyers are posh, white, upper-class old men.’ - Natasha
The Introduction to Law short course is a unique way to apply for a law degree, even if you don’t have formal qualifications.