United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland qualifications

We accept a wide range of qualifications from the UK and Republic of Ireland. If you have specific questions about your qualifications then please email our Admissions team at admissions@stir.ac.uk.

UK qualifications

Highers and other Scottish qualifications

We generally make offers based on your Higher and occasionally Advanced Higher grades.  Each of our course pages displays the typical requirements including the number of Highers and grades needed, along with the details of any essential subjects. We accept Highers taken over two sittings, although you may be asked for a higher grade if you repeated or upgraded examinations.

In order to be as fair and consistent as possible for those who are sitting any Advanced Highers, a grade C or above will count as an upgrade to the original Higher grade achieved. If you have an Advanced Higher only (without the relevant Higher), you’ll be asked for grade B in the Advanced Higher.

We make offers based on grades rather than tariff points.

Core skills

Core skills are encouraged, but are not normally listed as separate entrance qualifications in any offer we would make.

Credited entry Advanced Highers

It may be possible for students with three Advanced Highers to be offered Year 2 entry.

If you're interested in this option contact the Admissions team and look at the individual course pages for further detailed entry requirements.

Foundation Apprenticeships

Foundation Apprenticeships are fully accepted for all our undergraduate courses, and are generally equivalent to a Higher grade A or B, depending on how relevant the Foundation Apprenticeship is to the degree applied for.

Scottish Baccalaureate

We accept qualifications from Expressive Arts, Languages, Science or Social Sciences based on the relevance to our degree courses. The qualification consists of a group of current Higher and Advanced Higher subjects in combination with an interdisciplinary project.

Entry to year 2 of a degree course may be possible but depends on the subjects taken within the Interdisciplinary Project and the grades achieved.

Comparing Scottish Qualifications with the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF)

The SCQF is a way of comparing the wide range of Scottish qualifications. It covers achievements such as those from school, college, university, and many work-based qualifications. It does this by giving each qualification a level and a number of credit points. The level of a qualification shows how difficult the learning is. The credit points show how much learning is involved in achieving that qualification. Each credit point represents an average of 10 hours of learning.

The SCQF can help:

  • you decide how you progress in your learning
  • you understand qualifications you are not familiar with
  • employers understand different types of qualifications and help with the development of your skills
  • colleges and universities identify the level that has been studied in a particular subject and make it easier to transfer credit points between different learning programmes
  • provide recognition of other areas of your learning that may contribute to your personal development and your goals for the future.

All Scottish universities and colleges are now using SCQF levels and credit points to describe their courses, if these are included in the Framework. A wide range of other learning is also being recognised using SCQF levels and credits. Some employers are also using SCQF levels instead of, or as well as, types of qualification when they advertise jobs.

The SCQF also helps to illustrate the relationships between Scottish qualifications and those in the rest of the UK, Europe and beyond. This can clarify opportunities for international progression routes and credit transfer. The SCQF has recently been referenced to the European Qualifications Framework (EQF), meaning that there is now an easy way to compare the level of qualifications of the countries in Europe who have developed a National Qualifications Framework.

For more information visit The Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework website.


We make offers based on your predicted A-level grades. Each of our course pages displays the minimum grades required, along with the details of any essential subjects. 

Offers will normally be made on a basis equal to three A-levels, although all applications will be considered individually and offers may be given with less.

If you are re-sitting or upgrading some A-levels, we may increase our normal grade requirements.


We fully accept BTEC qualifications whether studied at Level 3 Extended Diploma level or in conjunction with our qualifications. Successful applicants will typically require a grade of DDM in their final Diploma.


We are fully supportive of the new T-level qualifications. Students will generally be asked to obtain a Merit.

If the course pages state a specific subject is required at A-level/Higher please check with Admissions and Access to confirm your T-level meets this requirement in advance of submitting an application.

The Welsh Baccalaureate

We accept the Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate. If you are studying the Welsh Baccalaureate we will generally treat this the same as one A-level. For most of our courses you will be required to have the equivalent of three A-levels or two A-levels plus the Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate.

Higher National Certificates (HNCs) and Higher National Diplomas (HNDs)

We consider applications from a range of college courses including Higher National Certificate and Higher National Diplomas.

Higher National Certificate (HNC)

It's possible to gain advanced entry from an HNC into Year 2 of a degree course for some subject-related degree courses.

Higher National Diploma (HND)

It's possible to gain advanced entry from an HND into Year 3 of a degree course for some subject-related degree courses.

HNDs from England, Wales and Northern Ireland require merits and at least two distinctions in all units. Year 3 entry will require 50 percent of merits/distinctions in second-year subjects. Double units will be considered as two merit units. You should indicate clearly the double units taken. Each application will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Contact our Admissions team for advice on your course.

For further advice and guidance please contact our Widening Participation Manager, or view our course list.

Access courses

Access courses are usually aimed at adults who have been out of formal education for some time and who have few or no relevant qualifications to get into university. These courses give you the academic qualifications needed for university, help you with advice and guidance throughout the university application process, and teach you study skills, such as essay writing, that are easily forgotten when you’ve been out of education for a while.

University of Stirling Access Course

Our Access to Degree Studies course has been specially designed to offer tailored support to mature students with no qualifications who want to access a degree course. We offer a part-time evening access course based on campus that’s run by our lecturers. If you complete this successfully with the required grades, you’ll be guaranteed a place on a Stirling degree course.

Scottish Wider Access Programme

The University of Stirling is a long-standing member of the Scottish Wider Access Partnership (SWAP) and works across the East and West regions to support students throughout the application process. Applications from students on courses approved by SWAP East and SWAP West are warmly welcomed. Entry requirements differ depending on what degree you want to apply to and what course you are currently studying. You should consult the relevant SWAP progression routes documentation in consultation with your lecturer to find out more.

All students on the University of Stirling Access programme are guaranteed a place at the University as long as you successfully complete your programme with the minimum entry requirements. Your first subject of choice may not always be offered. If we feel you are not quite ready for full-time study you may be offered part-time entry initially.

If you are not on an approved SWAP access course, we recommend that you get in touch with our College Liaison Manager to find out what your options are.

Irish Leaving Certificate (Higher Level)

We accept the Irish Leaving Certificate. For most courses, you will be required to have up to five subjects at Honour Levels at grades H2 or H3.

Passes in two subjects with a high amount of material in common may not be counted separately, for example Biology and Human Biology. Contact our Admissions and Access Team for advice.

Other UK qualifications

Other UK qualifications, for example degrees from UK universities, including the Open University, and some professional qualifications are recognised as satisfying entrance requirements.

Key Skills

Whilst encouraging Key Skills, we have no plans to list these as a separate entrance qualification in any offer made.

Advanced Diplomas

We welcome the new Advanced Diplomas and we're accepting these as suitable entry requirements. We're asking for specific grades in the Diploma and Additional Specialist Learning (ASL) component. Certain subject restrictions occur for some subjects.

For further details please refer to the UCAS Course Search facility for the University of Stirling.

Combined qualifications

We accept a wide range of qualifications from all over the world. If you are sitting a combination of different qualifications, you will be made an offer based on your individual circumstances (e.g. Highers and a Foundation Apprenticeship or A-level and BTEC combinations).