Birkbeck is unique in that it teaches only in the evening, allowing people who work full time, or have other commitments such as small children, to study for a degree. Because of this different approach, Birkbeck has a much more flexible admissions policy than most other universities, and the traditional A level grades are not always required. Birkbeck offers a range of over 50 degree programmes which can be taken in evening classes, with courses available over three, four or even six years. This not only helps to match busy schedules, but also means the fees can be spread out to make them more affordable to working families.
Despite its evenings-only approach, Birkbeck is still a leading centre for research and boasts excellent facilities to match. Birkbeck has its own, well-equipped library, which is open around the clock to complement the unusual study hours. Birkbeck students also enjoy access to many other University of London facilities, including the popular student union, which is right next door, offering superb sports and social activities and the biggest swimming pool in the capital.
Birkbeck is situated in the heart of London in Bloomsbury, and so is easy to reach by tube or bus. You can even borrow one of Boris’s Bikes, with a docking station right outside the college. Driving is probably not a good idea though, as Birkbeck is right in the middle of the London Congestion Charge Zone.
Most Birkbeck students already work or have families, and so have homes of their own. Birkbeck does have a small allocation of rooms in the UCL halls, although these are generally only available for full time students.
Fees are set at two levels, depending on the nature of your degree. Courses with professional accreditation are usually charged at the full rate of £9,000 per year, with other courses just £8,000. Fees are reduced pro-rata for longer courses, with six year courses costing £4,500 and £4,000 respectively.
Cash bursaries of up to £1,000 per annum are available to students with a household income under £25,000. Birkbeck is also part of the NSP scheme offering scholarships of up to £3,000 per year in the first year.