From 2017 UCAS is making some big changes to its Tariff system in response to a review in 2012 and feedback made by schools, colleges, and universities.
The key points of the changes are as follows:
But what does that mean for you?
In case you’re not sure, the UCAS “Tariff” is: “the UCAS Tariff is the system for allocating points to the different qualifications you can use to get into undergraduate higher education. Not all qualifications will be included on the Tariff. It is for use in admissions only and is not transferable to the job market."
For September 2017 entry the Tariff will change as UCAS felt that there were issues with the current system. The Tariff system will now be based on much lower numbers, so although the number of points you gain will seem lower the value of your qualification will not have changed. For example, currently 280 Tariff points can include A Levels, Scottish Highers, or BTECs. Under the new system 112 Tariff points can include A Levels, Scottish Highers, or BTECs. The most obvious change that you will notice is that AS qualifications have been repositioned as 40% of an A Level, rather than 60% as it currently is. The new system aims to be more consistent and will not change the entry requirements for universities and colleges.
No. Although the number of points you’ll get may seem a lot lower the new system means you’ll still need to achieve the same grades to meet the entry requirements of the universities you’ve applied to.
Again, no, all UK universities set their own entry requirements and aren’t obliged to use the UCAS Tariff system during the application process.
Students who apply during the 2016 admissions cycle (between September 2015 and June 2016) will use the current system.
UCAS will introduce the new Tariff system for courses starting from September 2017 for the 2017/2018 academic year.
If you apply during the 2016 admissions cycle but defer your entry until 2017 then the current/ “old” Tariff system will be used.
You can get further information about the new Tariff system on the UCAS website in the dedicated UCAS Tariff page.
There you’ll be able to get your questions answered, download the new Tariff tables, and work out the number of points you’ll earn from your qualifications using the Tariff Calculator.