Realising Opportunities

The University of Birmingham is part of the Realising Opportunities (RO) partnership. Realising Opportunities is a unique collaboration of leading, research intensive universities, working together to promote fair access and social mobility of students from groups underrepresented in higher education.

The Realising Opportunities initiative provides support to school and home schooled students during their post-16 studies to develop the skills to be successful at university. The programme has been supporting students since 2009 - have a look at this handy infographic (PDF, 1472 KB) to see some of the success it's had over the years.

RO students benefit from having access to information, advice and guidance from all of the partner universities. The programme ensures that students are better equipped for university life and have a greater understanding of what research intensive universities have to offer.

By taking part in the programme, students benefit from:

  • Additional consideration on their UCAS application
  • Alternative offer (most RO universities give an RO offer that is usually two grades below the standard offer found in their prospectus)
  • Access to events and activities at all RO universities including residential opportunities
  • Support in developing academic study skills
  • Online support from all RO universities and current undergraduate students
  • Transitional support to higher education
  • Access to professions and careers information

Medicine and Dentistry applicants

Students who apply to our Medicine and Surgery MBChB or Dental Surgery BDS programmes will be given a guaranteed admissions interview if they meet the following criteria:

  • Complete the Realising Opportunities programme
  • Hold a minimum of 7 GCSEs including English Language, Maths, Chemistry and Biology (or Double Award Science) at grades AABB or 7755 in any order
  • Have minimum predicted A level grades of BBB, including Chemistry and Biology
  • Have a strong personal statement with evidence for motivation for Medicine/Dentistry and involvement in society
  • Have taken the UCAT

What Realising Opportunities students think

Recent graduate Anam Chaudry took part in Realising Opportunities before studying Dentistry at the University of Birmingham. In her blog, Anam gives a realistic account of her widening participation experience, and includes advice on finding the right programme and determining your eligibility.

Read Anam's blog

Find out more

For further information about Realising Opportunities at the University of Birmingham, please email

To find out all about the national Realising Opportunities partnership, visit the Realising Opportunities website.