Although all universities will look at your grades and your personal statement to help them decide whether to offer you a place some universities may also use the UCAS tariff points system.
If they do use this system then you will need to get a minimum amount of points to be able to be considered for a place. Each university sets a different minimum amount of points for their courses so you will need to check with the universities you want to apply for to find out the amount of points you’ll need to be able to apply.
However, even if the university does use the UCAS tariff points system and you achieve the correct number of points that doesn’t mean that you are guaranteed an offer.
You may also need to achieve certain grades in a specific subject, such as a B grade in a science-based subject. Your chosen university may also require you to achieve an A or a B grade in the subject that you wish to study at university.
Some qualifications, such as A Levels or Scottish Highers, have two levels that build up to a final qualification. When you’re working out your UCAS points total you only take the points from the highest level you have achieved.
Although most people take the higher level after completing the first stage of qualification, for example taking the A Level after the AS level, you can just take the lower level.
Some colleges require their students to study four subjects at AS Level and follow three of those subjects onto A Level. The points from the “dropped” AS level subject would count towards your total UCAS tariff points score.
If you have only taken an AS Level in a subject then you would use the UCAS tariff points from these grades to go towards your total UCAS tariff points score.
Here are the UCAS tariff points for AS Levels:
Grade A – 20 UCAS points
Grade B – 16 UCAS points
Grade C – 12 UCAS points
Grade D – 10 UCAS points
Grade E – 6 UCAS points