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Postgraduate Taught

Supporting documents

We will need a  transcript (in English or a certified translation) giving full details of subjects studied and grades/marks obtained.

Please send scanned or certified copies of transcripts and not the originals*; however, in order to apply for a UK student visa and register at the start of your programme, you will need to produce your original certificates and transcripts. 

*The University cannot guarantee the return of original documents, We therefore request that you do not send original documentation during the admissions process and should you choose send originals you do so at your own risk.

If you are not a national of a majority English-speaking country you will need to submit evidence of your proficiency in English to the UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) and University's required standards.

The following forms can be used but endorsed references will also be accepted (see below):

Please check whether one or two references are required for the programme for which you are applying.

You should supply at least one reference from an academic referee who is in a position to comment on the standard of your academic work and suitability for postgraduate level study. Where this is not possible, we will accept references from other sources that provide evidence of your ability to undertake postgraduate study and suitability for your chosen programme (for example an employer or colleague). We cannot accept references from family members, partners or spouses.

Once you have your reference you can either upload via the online application system (if you have not yet submitted your application), via the Gateway if you have already submitted an application, or the reference can be posted to us. You can also send a reference via our enquiry form. If your referee emails your reference to us we can only accept this if it is sent from a university or company email address. Paper reference forms should be endorsed by an appropriate institution/company official stamp. Alternatively we can accept a letter of reference on official institution/company letterhead.

Please Note: that it is your responsibility to provide us with any reference that is required, either during the application process or following your receipt of a conditional offer. Postgraduate Admissions will not contact a Referee and make a request on your behalf.

There’s endless advice around about what to include in your personal statement for an undergraduate degree but there’s much less at postgraduate level… If you’re wondering what to include in your personal statement for a Masters degree at the University of Exeter read on for our top five tips.

Tip 1: Take your time

The best personal statements are tailored to the particular course so give yourself plenty of time to work on yours. Before you start:

  • check the entry requirements on the website and research the course content thoroughly.
  • think about how undergraduate study has prepared you for a postgraduate course – perhaps through independent work, work placements or conferences that you've attended.
  • think about why this is the right course for you.

Tip 2: Tailor it to the course

No-one wants to read a statement that feels like it’s a copied from a template so make sure you tailor your statement to the course.

Our admissions tutors will be looking for:

  • an explanation of how the course links your past and future
  • an insight into your abilities, and how they'll fit with the course – think about skills like research, critical thinking, communication, organisation, planning and time-management
  • evidence of your skills, commitment and enthusiasm
  • reasons why you want to study this course at the University of Exeter
  • your particular interest in the subject, perhaps including some academic references.

Tip 3: Keep it simple

Getting your points across clearly is much easier when you don’t overcomplicate things. The following tips should help:

  • Stick to under 500 words in length
  • Keep your sentences short and clear
  • Consider using headings to break up the content - for example, 'Why the University of Exeter?' 'Why this course?' 'Career plans’
  • Proofread and ask a friend to check it over
  • Avoid clichés like the plague
  • Check your grammar, punctuation and spelling for accuracy
  • Use a standard font such as Arial or Times New Roman, text size 11

Tip 4: Show your enthusiasm

Tell us what you love about your subject and the programme you’re applying for – we want to know why you’re the perfect candidate for the course. Make sure you cover:

  • why you want to study this Masters
  • how the course fits your attitude/skills/experience
  • what you’re aiming to do in your future career

If you're applying for a subject in a different field from your undergraduate degree, tell us why you’ve decided to change direction.

Tip 5: Give it some structure

Use a tight structure and make sure each paragraph flows logically. You should:

  • have a strong introduction that acts as a framework for the rest of your statement
  • use the main part of your statement to explain your interests, experience and knowledge and why you want to do this course
  • use your conclusion to clearly show your will to study and summarise why you're the ideal candidate.

When you’re happy with it, submit your application online. We wish you the best of luck and hope you’ll be joining us at the University of Exeter soon!

Essential documentation required for an initial decision on taught programme applications

We understand that you will want to receive a decision from us as soon as possible after sending your application but may not yet have completed all your academic and/or English language qualifications at the time of application and will also need time to contact your referee(s). Please send as many of the required supporting documents as possible with your application; as a minimum to enable us to make an initial decision on your application, you will need to:

(a) complete the Module Information section of the application form giving details of any outstanding modules and your expected date of completion;

(b) send any interim transcripts that you have to support your application.

If you have not yet completed your academic or English language qualifications, if your academic profile meets our requirements, we will normally be able to make you an offer which is conditional on completing these qualification/s and supplying a reference. You will need to provide evidence that you have met these conditions before your offer can be considered unconditional

Can I send my supporting documentation in after my application?

We recommend uploading all supporting documents with your application as this makes the process much quicker and enables us to make a faster decision on your application.

You can apply before completing all of your academic qualifications but you will need to provide any interim transcripts that you have to support your application.

International students

If you are an international student and you have not yet completed your academic or English language qualifications we will normally be able to make you an offer on condition on completing these and supplying any required references. You will need to provide documentary evidence that you have met these conditions before your offer can be considered unconditional.

We do not require original copies at the application stage and would not recommend that you send these during the application process. Please note that ALL international students will need to show original or certified copies of academic qualification/s and (if applicable) an English Language qualification at registration along with your current passport and (if appropriate) student visa.