Liberal Arts and Sciences: admissions essay

Liberal Arts and Sciences students who meet our entry criteria will be asked to submit a 1000-word admissions essay shortly after submitting their UCAS application.

Unconditional and Conditional Offers will then be made based on the quality of the essays.

Why do you require an essay?

Liberal Arts and Sciences is a highly-competitive and popular course for several reasons:

  • We allow our students to combine modules from across the University to create a unique tailored programme of study.
  • Our students spend a Year Abroad studying at universities in places such as Canada, Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong, the USA and Japan.
  • You will have exclusive access to our Cultural Programme, in which we bring poets, writers, academics and scientific specialists to speak to you on campus, whilst also organising trips beyond the University to theatres and exhibitions.

As such, the admissions essay ensures we only make offers to the brightest and most exceptional applicants.

What is the essay topic?

You will be asked to submit a 1000-word essay in response to one of three questions. There will be a question for each of the following areas:

  • Arts and Humanities
  • Social Science
  • Science

You can choose which question you answer. The exact three questions will be confirmed nearer the time.

When will I be invited to write the essay?

You will be asked to submit your UCAS application as normal, between September 2016 and the deadline of 15 January 2017.

Candidates with excellent predicted grades, strong GCSEs or equivalent (including Maths and English at grade C or above), along with a strong personal statement and academic reference, will be invited to submit an essay.

We will send you an email with the three essay questions and details of how to submit your essay. Typically, you will have to submit this directly to the University of Birmingham by email, and this should be submitted within four weeks.

Do I have to complete the essay?

Yes – no offers will be made until we receive and evaluate the essay that you have submitted.

What will happen then?

Based on the standard of the application and the quality of the admissions essay, candidates will typically be made a Conditional Offer of either A*AA or AAA.

We will also make a small number of Unconditional Offers for truly outstanding applicants.

Equivalent offers will be made for those studying the International Baccalaureate and similar qualifications.

What happens once I receive my offer?

There are no further essays, interviews or exams.

Shortly after receiving your offer, you will be invited to attend one of our Applicant Visit Days, scheduled for the following dates:

  • Wednesday 25 January 2017
  • Wednesday 22 February 2017
  • Wednesday 15 March 2017

This is not compulsory but it is a fantastic opportunity to meet our academic staff, current students and discover more about the course.