How higher education providers can join the UCAS Undergraduate scheme, and details of the support we give at every stage of the application journey.

We pride ourselves in putting our customers at the centre of everything we do. We ensure:

  • higher education providers can easily manage their applications
  • applicants have a smooth admissions process

Through our customer base of 384 undergraduate providers, we now support a diverse range of HE course providers. We're committed to supporting and working in partnership with the full range of HE providers to ensure the right applicants are applying for the right courses, at the right providers.

View the  UCAS Undergraduate Admissions Guide 2020 entry (2.94 MB) which gives detailed information about the procedures for each stage of the application process. You can also view the Terms of Service (319.3 KB) for further information.

The application window runs from September to June for each admissions cycle.

Joining the UCAS Undergraduate scheme

Benefits of the scheme

Being part of our centralised admissions service provides an efficient way of helping universities and colleges to:

  • connect with prospective students
  • advertise their courses
  • receive and manage applications for admission
  • manage interactions with prospective students, schools and colleges and qualification awarding organisations
  • plan and manage their student numbers, accommodation and student support services
  • complete their statutory reporting
  • ensure that their admissions processes are fair and transparent

Criteria to joining the scheme

Accessing UCAS Undergraduate scheme products and services is open to any higher education provider who can demonstrate that:

  • you deliver validated or accredited, quality assured teaching and learning for one or more full-time undergraduate-level programme(s) leading to an award at Cert HE, Dip HE, HNC, HND, foundation degree or first degree standard and resulting in an award with a UK source of validation or accreditation.
  • you are a subscriber to the QAA, or can demonstrate that you have undergone a quality assurance review within the last two years, with a satisfactory outcome

  • you or your validating provider is listed on the Department for Education register of recognised or listed bodies
  • if you recruit international students, the provider is listed on the Home Office Tier 4 Sponsor Register (if applicable)
  • you have sufficient legal and financial status to demonstrate the ability to support the delivery of full time undergraduate programmes to students.

Capitation fee

An annual capitation fee is charged to you for each student you recruit through the UCAS system. For the 2020 entry cycle, this is £26.45 per student, but can be reviewed by the UCAS Board from time to time.

The minimum capitation fee is £3,000 per year excluding VAT.

The capitation fee is invoiced twice a year – 60% in August, and the remaining 40% in February.

Download the PDF version of our how to join the UCAS Undergraduate scheme (1.06 MB) brochure.

Please email if you have any questions

Your obligations

To take full advantage of the benefits of working with us, there's the expectation UCAS providers will:

  • cooperate with us in all matters relating to the services, and participate, wherever possible, in meetings of members and partners
  • keep all key contact details up-to-date and inform your relationship manager of any changes
  • operate within information security standards ISO/IEC 27001
  • make sure course and provider data is complete, accurate and up-to-date
  • ensure data security measures exist in line with ISO 2700 criteria, and employees, contractors and agents comply with the Data Protection Act 2018 principles
  • adhere to the requirements in the Admissions Guide for the applicable year of entry – in particular decision-making deadlines
  • adhere to the UCAS Applications Recruitment Policy – recruiting exclusively through UCAS for all full-time programmes of study culminating in an academic award at first degree or other undergraduate level

All providers wishing to join the service will also be required to meet UCAS' data standards (349.68 KB) UCAS marketing services data standards (256.65 KB)

UCAS schemes

As well as offering a shared application service for undergraduate HE applications, we also have partnership arrangements with:

  • conservatoires
  • providers of postgraduate teacher training
  • providers of postgraduate study 

UCAS Teacher Training is a single admissions system for the main postgraduate routes into teaching in England and Wales, including School Direct in England, alongside established training programmes at HEPs and SCITTs. If you're a training provider interested in joining, please read our information about joining UCAS Teacher Training. Postgraduate teacher training programmes in Scotland are managed through the UCAS Undergraduate scheme. 

UCAS Conservatoires provides the facilities to research and apply for practice-based music, dance and drama courses at eight of the UK conservatoires. Find out more about UCAS Conservatoires .

UCAS Postgraduate is an online postgraduate application management service, where people can search and apply for postgraduate courses, and manage their applications.

UCAS legal membership

If your university or college is already a customer of the UCAS Undergraduate services and meets certain criteria, you could choose to become a legal member of UCAS. Our legal members are able to attend our Annual General Meetings and raise and vote on resolutions, which typically relate to receiving our Annual Report and Accounts and the approval of the appointment of our auditors.

To qualify for legal membership, your university or college must:

  1. provide higher education with a UK source of validation; and
  2. have full membership of one of UCAS' recognised sector bodies (Universities UK, Guild HE, the Association of Colleges, or Universities Scotland); and
  3. use the core UCAS service for undergraduate admissions; and
  4. accept in excess of 100 undergraduate students per annum (based on a three year rolling average), or such other acceptance levels as are reasonably agreed by the UCAS Board of Trustees from time to time

If you are eligible to become a legal member, you will be invited to take up this opportunity. If you would like to discuss this further, please contact your relationship manager in the first instance.

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