The European Education Directory

University of London External System

The Information Centre, Senate House
Malet Street, London WC1E 7HU, UK

Tel: +44 (0) 20 7862 8360; Fax: +44 (0) 20 7862 8358


      Type of qualifications
      A range of over 100 undergraduate and postgraduate qualifications is offered by the University of London External Programme to be studied at a distance. Some students study full-time, others study part-time while working fulltime.

      The University of London maintains robust and effective quality assurance mechanisms. The same academics who teach and assess students at Colleges of the University develop syllabuses, prepare study materials, and set and mark examinations for External students. Degrees awarded to External students are of an identical standard to those awarded to College-based students. You receive the same University of London Degree.

      Study Support
      At UNDERGRADUATE LEVEL students receive a package of introductory study materials including the Regulations, Handbook, Resource Guide, Subject Guides for each unit studied and Past Examination Papers and Reports. Students either study alone, using these materials as the starting point, or seek the support of tuition at a local institution if one is available, or with correspondence support from an institution offering this service. There is minimal contact with the University and this is reflected in the fees charged. Some courses now have online support.

      At POSTGRADUATE LEVEL, students receive FULL distance learning study materials necessary for the course (books, specially written subject materials, readers, audio/video tapes, computer software etc.). They are also assigned a tutor with whom they are in contact regarding feedback on assignments etc. This additional support is reflected in the fees charged. Some courses also have online support.

      Length of programmes
      In recognition of the more difficult study circumstances that many External students experience, a more flexible study period is allowed than for conventional courses. Undergraduate students have between 3-8 years to complete a degree and 1-5 years to complete a diploma. The length of postgraduate study varies but in general students have between 2-5 years to complete a degree and 1-5 years to complete a diploma.

      Date of commencement
      Undergraduates - students may apply and register at any time of year. However, if they wish to sit for examination in May/June they must have applied by 17 September (non-EU students) 17 October (EU students) in the year PRIOR to their first examination and be registered by 31November. Postgraduates: The dates vary depending on the degree. Information is given in each prospectus.

      Class size
      For the majority of qualifications offered there is NO quota. If the student is eligible, they will be registered.

      Undergraduate: Various: however, we worked out that if a student takes four years to complete their degree they will have paid in the region of 3,000 to the University. They will also need to budget for around 300 per year for books and, in addition, allow for examination fees to the independent examination authority and for any tuition. Postgraduate: Between 3,950 and 23,000 depending on the qualification, plus fees to the independent examination authority.

      Undergraduate Admission requirements
      Potential students apply with a wide variety of qualifications and experience. Although we lay down general guidelines on eligibility, we only decide whether or not qualifications are acceptable after we receive an application form, the handling fee and satisfactory documentary evidence of the qualifications. Full information is given in each prospectus. However, in general terms, to be eligible for undergraduate degree study, students must:
      a) be at least 17 years old
      b) satisfy the general entrance requirements
      c) satisfy any course requirements for the particular degree if applicable (details are given in the prospectus)

      To automatically satisfy the general entrance requirements, you must have:
      a) passes in two subjects at GCE "A" level and passes at grade C or above in three further subjects at GCSE/GCE "O" level (or one of the other acceptable combinations we list in our prospectus) or
      one of the many qualifications from around the world that are listed in our current prospectuses as equivalent to these requirements.

      Mature Candidates
      If you do not satisfy the general entrance requirements listed above, and are over 21, you are considered to be a mature candidate. Your application will be considered on an individual basis. Although we look at your age, relevant work experience and reasons for wanting to study, we invariably require evidence of acceptable mature age study and qualifications gained since you left school. Having considered your application, we may then ask you to obtain a further qualification before making you an offer of registration. Your application is valid for 5 years, so you have time to gain any further qualifications you may need.

      Postgraduate admission requirements
      Potential students apply with a wide variety of qualifications and experience. A general guideline is that a student should have a good first degree in an appropriate subject from an institution acceptable to the University. However, students also apply with a wide range of professional qualifications and experience, and these may be taken into consideration. Students who do not satisfy the entrance requirements for the degree can sometimes begin their studies as a Diploma or Affiliated/Occasional student. There are opportunities for these students to progress to the degree or diploma if they do well enough in their examinations. Students may also choose to study for individual modules or units for professional updating.

      Students are required to show evidence of English language proficiency.

      Student profile
      The age of External students ranges from 17 to 90+. The majority are between the ages of 22 and 40. 34,000 students from over 190 countries worldwide are registered on the Programme. 75% are non-British. Almost one third off all External students are resident in a country other than the one of which they are a citizen.

    Contact details for application.
    In the first instance you should contact:
    The Information Centre, The University of London External System
    (05/CEEBD), Senate House, Malet Street, London WC1E 7HU
    Tel: +44 (0) 20 7862 8360; Fax: +44 (0) 20 7862 8358


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