Entry requirements

To join us at Cardiff University International Study Centre, you need to meet the minimum academic and English language entrance requirements. 

For courses starting in September 2021, you can choose how you study so you can either join us on campus or start your studies virtually from home and come to campus at a later date.  Find out more here.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, we are now able to accept a wider range of English tests for entry in September 2021.

  • If you are applying for the International Foundation Year

    Joining us on campus

    You can start your studies with a UKVI-approved Secure English Language Test (SELT), provided you have met all the programme entry requirements. 

    The test results must have been achieved in the past 24 months and meet the minimum English equivalency score for your chosen programme.

    • IELTS Academic for UKVI
    • Trinity Integrated Skills in English
    • Pearson PTE Academic UKVI
    • Language Cert SELT

    Starting your studies virtually from home and coming to campus at a later date.

    You can start your studies virtually with a UKVI-approved Secure English Language Test (SELT) as above or you can provide proof of your English language proficiency with an alternative test. This is possible because you do not need a Student Visa to start virtually from your home country.

    You will need to obtain a SELT with the required minimum score to make a Student Visa application in order to come to campus.

    The test results must have been achieved in the past 24 months and meet the minimum English equivalency score for your chosen programme

    Alternative tests accepted include:

    • IELTS Academic
    • IELTS Indicator
    • Pearson PTE Academic
    • Language Cert International ESOL
    • TOEFL iBT/iBT Home addition
    • Cambridge ESOL
    • Duolingo
    • Linguaskill
    • Oxford Test of English
  • If you are applying for the Pre-Masters

    You can start your studies in September 2021 with either a UKVI-approved Secure English Language Test (SELT), or an accepted alternative equivalent assessment, provided you meet all the programme entry requirements. 

    The test results must have been achieved in the past 24 months and meet the minimum English equivalency score for your chosen programme.

    This applies if you:

    • come to campus, or
    • start your studies virtually and join us on campus at a later date.

    UKVI-approved SELTS include:

    • IELTS Academic for UKVI
    • Trinity Integrated Skills in English 
    • Pearson PTE Academic UKVI
    • Language Cert SELT

    Alternative tests accepted include:

    • Pearson PTE Academic
    • IELTS Indicator
    • IELTS Academic
    • LanguageCert International ESOL
    • TOEFL iBT
    • Cambridge ESOL
    • Duolingo
    • Linguaskill
    • Oxford Test of English

    Study Group is permitted to assess students’ suitability for entry onto programmes which are degree level and above under the registration for the UK Office for Students. You are therefore not required to have a UKVI SELT to obtain a Student Visa when you come to campus.

    If you begin your course virtually and transfer to the UK to complete your programme, you may be issued a Confirmation of Acceptance of Studies (CAS) based on the Academic English Skills module assessments (as part of your Pre-Masters).

    A CAS for a Student Visa will only be issued if you have met the minimum language requirement of CEFR B2 in all skills, and the academic entry requirements for your chosen programme.

Check the entry requirements for your programme

If you do not meet the English language requirements for your pathway programme, you can join an English language preparation course first.

To progress to your undergraduate or postgraduate degree, you will be required to successfully complete your pathway programme and achieve the required grades.

International Foundation Year

A one-year programme to prepare international students for their undergraduate degree.

Academic Good high school graduation grades or equivalent
English language Academic IELTS for UKVI 5.0 (minimum 5.0 in writing)
Academic IELTS for UKVI 6.0 (minimum 6.0 in writing, no skill below 5.5) is required for students aiming to progress to Medicine, Dental Surgery, Pharmacy, Optometry and Medical Pharmacology, Journalism and Communications; Journalism, Communications and Politics; Media and Communications or Media, Journalism and Culture.
Age 17+ (view our under-18s guidance)
  • Country specific entry requirements
    Your country Academic qualification(s) you need
    Bahrain Successful completion of Tawjahiya with average grade of 80% or above, with 70% in relevant subjects
    Bangladesh HSC/Alim/Polytechnic Diploma grades 3.0-5.0 (60%/A&B) to include passes in 4 or more subjects. 50% min. required for relevant subjects ie. Maths and Sciences
    China SH2: 70% average inc relevant subjects, and a minimum of 4 academic subjects or SH3: 65% average inc relevant subjects, and a minimum of 4 academic subjects pass or above
    Ghana Successful completion of the West African School Certificate (WAEC) or Senior School Certificate average grade 1-6 (A-C) in 4 or more subjects
    Hong Kong Form 5: Pass in 4 or more subjects. Subject list includes all subjects
    HKDSE 322
    India Completion of Year 11 65% or
    Year 12 (HSC) 55%
    Indonesia Successful completion of SMU 3/Sikolah Menegah at grade 6.5 or above or SMU 2 at an average of 7.0, to include 5 relevant subjects
    Iran Transcript of High School Diploma Theoretical stream (3 years) required Min. overall GPA requirement is 14 inc relevant subjects
    Japan Successful completion of Kotogakko (Year 12) with grade average or 65% or GPA 2.5 Year 11 with 70% or GPA 4/5 may be considered, subject to age
    Jordan Successful completion of Tawjihi with overall average of 80% including relevant subjects, with no lower than 70% in any subject
    Kazakhstan Successful completion of ATTESTAT/Certificate of Secondary Education (Grade 11) with grade average 4 and 5
    Korea SH3: 5th Grade average in rank, with at least 5th grade in relevant subjects
    SH2: 4th Grade average in rank with at least 4th grade in relevant subjects
    Kuwait Successful completion of Tawjihi with overall average of 80% including relevant subjects, with no lower than 70% in any subject
    Libya Successful completion Secondary Education Certificate with average of 80%
    Macau Successful completion of iGCSE/'O' Levels at grade C in 5 relevant subjects including English or completion of Form 5 or Senior Middle 2. Top schools require 65%, other schools require 75%
    Malaysia SPM/UEC school: Form 5, Term 2, Mid-Year, Final Year Transcripts - Grades of A- C achieved in 5 relevant academic subjects to include English and Maths. SPM (Malaysia Certificate of Education) with 5 C grades or above in relevant subjects to include English and Mathematics.
    UEC minimum C grade in 5 relevant academic subjects inc. English & Mathematics.
    Mexico Successful completion of Bachillerato at a average of 75% and above
    Morocco Diplôme du Baccalauréat with grade average of 12
    Nigeria Successful completion of West African School Certificate (WAEC) or Senior School Certificate with 1-6 (A-C) in 4 or more relevant subjects
    Oman Successful completion of Year 12 (General Education Diploma): 80% overall and 70% in all subjects, including relevant subjects
    Pakistan Year 11 entry: 75% - 50% min. required for relevant subjects ie. Maths and Sciences, to include passes in 4 or more subjects. HSC grades (60% overall, min 50% in any subject)
    Qatar Successful completion of Thanawaya Aam Qatari with overall grade 80% including relevant subjects and with no lower than 80% in any subjects
    Russia Successful completion of ATTESTAT/11th grade with a minimum GPA of 4.0
    Saudi Arabia Successful completion of Tawjihi with average of 80% and no lower than 70% in relevant subjects
    Singapore 5 A-C grades O Level (accept mother tongue languages) or Year 1 of Diploma/University course with GPA 1.8
    Taiwan Successful completion of Senior High School Year 3 pass with an average grade of 60% in relevant subjects overall, including relevant subjects or SH2 with 70%
    Thailand Successful completion of MAW 6 with average GPA 2.0 in relevant subjects including Maths and Sciences or successful completion of MAW 5 with GPA 2.5
    Turkey Successful completion of Devlet Lise Diploması (High School Completion) - 65% overall with minimum 60% in relevant subjects
    UAE Successful completion of Tawjihi with average of 80% and minimum of 70% in relevant subjects
    Ukraine Successful completion of ATTESTAT/11th grade with a minimum GPA of 7.0
    USA Grade 11 - GPA 2.75 or Grade 12 2.50. GED: 600 overall with 150 in 4 subjects, including prerequisites
    Vietnam Successful completion of Year 12 with average GPA 6.5 or Year 11 GPA 7.0, to include 6.5+ for Maths and Science subjects

    Please note: country specific entry requirements are for all programmes except for students wishing to apply for Medicine or Dental Surgery. For these degree aims, students must make an enquiry to be advised on entry and progression requirements.

  • Additional entry requirements

    Arts, Humanities, Law and Social Sciences

    For Music: Applicants are required to show evidence of working towards Grade 8 Practical in one instrument or voice (ABRSM/Trinity/Rockschool) + Grade 5/6 Theory (ABRSM/Trinity). This will be assessed by means of a short audition or theory test when applying for the International Foundation Year. Equivalent qualifications may be accepted following consultation with Cardiff University.

    Engineering, Physical Sciences and Architecture

    Maths or a numerate subject is required for all degree aims (except for Architecture).

    Health, Medical and Life Sciences 

    For Medicine and Dental Surgery, students must have Chemistry and two other Sciences (Maths is one science). Find out more about the Medicine and Dental Surgery selection process.

    Please note: places may be limited for Medicine and Dental Surgery.

Pre-Master's programme

programme preparing international students for postgraduate study.

Academic Business, Social Sciences and Humanities:
First degree or a diploma in a related subject area
Computer Science:
Recognised first degree in any discipline or diploma in a related field
MSc Software Engineering requires first degree or diploma in either a STEM subject with evidence of programming OR a non-STEM subject with evidence of suitable professional programming experience.
English language

2 semester programme: Academic IELTS for UKVI 5.5 (minimum 5.5 in all skills)
2.5 semester programme: Academic IELTS for UKVI 5.5 (minimum 5.0 in all skills)
3 semester programme: Academic IELTS for UKVI 5.0 (minimum 5.0 in all skills)

Age 20+
  • Country specific entry requirements
    Your country Academic qualification(s) you need to have
    Bangladesh Recognised first degree - 3 year undergraduate degree with overall of 50% (Hons) and 55% (Regular Pass)
    China 4 year full time studies Bachelor degree average 65% / 4 year full times studies Undergraduate Graduation Certificate 75% /3 year full time studies Higher Education Diploma average 80%
    Ghana Undergraduate degree or HND in a related subject area (Grades A+ to B/3.0-4.0)
    Hong Kong First degree (honours/ordinary) OR HND, Honours Diploma, Associate Degree, Professional Diploma all in a related subject area with GPA 2.5 +
    India Recognised first degree - 3 year undergraduate degree with overall of 45% (Hons) and 50% (Regular Pass), 4 Year Undergraduate (Any) 45%,
    Indonesia Recognised first degree or D4 Diploma with grades A4-B3
    Japan Recognised first degree with 60% or above or 3 year associated degree with 70% or above
    Jordan Recognised first degree,  GPA 2.5/4.0 scale or 3.0/5.0 scale
    Kazakhstan Successful completion of Bakalavar, Specialist Diploma/Kazakh Diploma (4-5 years) with grades 3/4/5. Recognised first degree
    Korea Bachelor’s degree with grade average 70%+. Grade C or of 2.0 on the 4.5 scale or 2.0 on the 4.3 scale
    Kuwait Recognised first degree, GPA 2.5/4.0 scale or 3.0/5.0 scale
    Libya Higher Diploma in a related subject
    Macau Recognised first degree (honours/ordinary) GPA 2.5 or HND, Honours Diploma, Associate Degree, Professional Diploma in a related subject Area with GPA 3 or higher
    Malaysia  Recognised first degree or Advanced Diploma in a related subject area (A, B & C/2.0+)
    Nigeria Recognised first degree or HND (in related subject). Distinction and Upper credit only
    Oman 4 years Bachelor's degree or 3 year Higher/Advanced Diploma : GPA 2.5/4.0 scale or 3.0/5.0 scale
    Pakistan Recognised first degree - 3 year undergraduate degree with overall of 50% (Hons) and 55% (Regular Pass), 4 Year Undergraduate (Any) 50%
    Qatar Recognised first degree, GPA 2.5/4.0 scale or 3.0/5.0 scale
    Russia Bakalavar, Specialist Diploma (4/5 years) with a minimum GPA of 4.0
    Saudi Arabia Recognised first degree  GPA 2.5/4.0 scale or 3.0/5.0 scale
    Singapore Pass from a recognised first degree or Advanced Diploma or Singapore Diploma GPA 2.0
    Taiwan Recognised first degree/Bachelor degree at GPA 2.0
    Thailand Bachelor degree with 2.3 on the 4.0 scale or Higher Diploma of Technical or Vocational Education or Associate Degree
    Turkey Lisans Diplomasi or Muhendis Diplomasi at GPA 2.1 or above
    UAE Recognised first degree, GPA 2.5/4.0 scale or 3.0/5.0 scale
    Ukraine Recognised first degree/Bakavalar/Ukrainian Diploma with a minimum GPA of 7.0
    USA Successful completion of degree GPA 2.0 on a 4 point scale
    Vietnam Recognised First Degree with GPA 6.0. Recognised Associate Degree or Higher Diploma with high grades (7.0+)

    Please note: country specific entry requirements are for all programmes except for students wishing to apply for Medicine or Dental Surgery. For these degree aims, students must make an enquiry to be advised on entry and progression requirements.

  • Additional entry requirements

    Business, Social Sciences and Humanities

    For Forensic Linguistics and Applied Linguistics – First degree or diploma in English Language or Linguistics

    For Education, Social and Public Policy and Social Science – First degree or diploma in relevant subject area

    Journalism related degrees – First degree or diploma in related arts, humanities or social science disciplines

    Please note that places may be limited on some degrees.

    Computer Science

    For Computing and Computing and IT Management – First degree or diploma in any discipline other than Computing

    For Software Engineering – First degree or diploma in either a STEM subject with evidence of programming or non-STEM with evidence of suitable programming experience.

    Please note that places may be limited on some degrees.

English language programme

If your English language level does not meet the requirement for the International Foundation Year, you can study English with us first.

  • International Foundation Year – English Language Preparation

    Depending on your level of English, you may require one or two terms of English.

    English entry How many terms?
    Academic IELTS for UKVI 4.5 overall (4.5 in writing)
    Academic IELTS for UKVI 4.0 overall (4.0 in all components) 2

    The English Language Preparation programme is not available for students who are aiming to study Medicine, Dental Surgery, Medical Pharmacology, Pharmacy, Journalism and Communications; Journalism, Communications and Politics; Media and Communications or Media, Journalism and Culture.

  • Pre-Master's – English for Pre-Master's
    English entry How many weeks? 
    Academic IELTS for UKVI 5.0 overall (minimum 5.0 in all skills) 10