The Do’s and Don’ts of Personal Statements for undergraduate applications


Applying to a university in London can seem a bit difficult but there is a clear process which all UK and international students follow. For the majority of undergraduate courses at London universities, you will apply via a centralised application system called UCAS.

The UCAS deadline for applications is 15 January every year, but many London universities have later deadlines for international students so you still have time to submit your applications to start in September this year.

As part of your application, you will have to write a Personal Statement. This is an application letter which gives you the opportunity to tell the university why you are applying for the course and what makes you suitable. Here are some tips on what to include:

  1. Why are you applying?: Why are you applying for this subject? Why does it interest you? What are your career aspirations and how does this course relate to that? It is important to show a good understanding of the subject area and a great level of enthusiasm.
  2. What makes you suitable for the course?: What are your experiences that will allow you to succeed on the course? Did you cover a similar subject area during your high school studies? Do you have any relevant work experience? Most courses do not require work experience but it can be an advantage.
  3. Any other relevant information: You may also write about your hobbies and interests, and make sure to relate them to skills required in your chosen profession. For example, if you play a sport, you can highlight team work and leadership skills.

There are also some very common mistakes which you can easily avoid by checking and double-checking your Personal Statement. What to avoid:

  1. Do not repeat information already stated on your application: There is a word limit on your Person Statement so it is important to only include the most important factors. You do not need to repeat any of the information you have already stated in other parts of the application, for example a list of your high school subjects.
  2. Do not copy paragraphs from the internet: It is okay to get some ideas from the internet but you should not copy anything you read. Universities have sophisticated software which checks whether you have copied a particular section from the internet.
  3. Check your spelling & grammar: Make sure your spell-check is on and read through your statement carefully several times.

It is a good idea to get your family and friends to check your Personal Statement as they might have some good ideas for you. Remember, this is your chance to show the universities how much you want to study this course.

For further information and advice on UCAS and the Personal Statement, take a look at the UCAS website.

Start your application process now by searching for courses or contact your preferred university with your queries.

55 comments on “The Do’s and Don’ts of Personal Statements for undergraduate applications

  1. Erika says:

    Hi! My name is Erika, I am Italian. I am really interested to study Graphic Design in London, am I still in time? I don’t have any experience about this subject, but I love art and I pick up really easy. Do you know if some universities have some preparation courses to apply for the BA? Thank you a lot, looking forward to hear from you. Erika

    • Study London says:

      Hi Erika, for most Art & Design courses you will need to show a portfolio of work you have already done. Some universities offer Foundation courses in Art & Design so you can contact them to find out exactly what they would like to see. As an example, take a look at the Foundation diploma offered by the University of the Arts London. Application deadlines vary between universities so it’s important to check their websites or contact them directly.

  2. Vinita Das says:

    I am Indian, Have professional experience in customer service for 6yrs. Looking for some soft skill course. kindly help me

  3. Rukhsana says:

    I relly like uk study

  4. Abdul Goni says:

    Hi i am goni.i i am interested to study computer science in london of london metropolitan university.i don’t have any experience, how to apply ?

  5. Mary Adjei says:

    Hi, i’m Mary, a Ghanaian and currently a university student. Would like to pursue a bachelors in medicine but want to go through the foundation programme because the qualification i have is WASSCE. How do i go about it please? Hoping to hear from you soon.

    • Study London says:

      Hi Mary, while some universities offer a Foundation programme for medicine, not all universities accept this qualification for entry into medicine. Therefore, if you decide to take a Foundation programme you should think about where you want to apply for medicine afterwards. You can then contact these universities to ensure they would accept the foundation programme. One popular medicine foundation programme in London is offered by UCL. Alternatively you could complete A-levels or a degree in a different subject (ideally something allied to Medicine) before applying for a medicine degree.

  6. dahir says:

    my is dahir

    I am Somali student who finished high school 2013-2014 I started first degree in university so I can not afford fee my parents can’t because my family is poor
    I live a hard life but I have the skills to work I hope I get my offer

  7. baya giftie ambang says:

    Hi, my mame is Giftie and i am a Cameroonian. i really want to pursue my dreams of studying economics in any london college. I am a holder of GCE ‘A’ Level and hope am guided into realising my dreams.

  8. Omoyele Jibayo says:

    Hi I will like to pursue my Master Degree (
    any Agronomy caurse. I came out 2:2 second class lower in Soil science (Agrenomy) please how will i go about it?

    • Study London says:

      Hello, you can use the course search to find relevant courses in your subject area. The course listing normally states the entry requirements. However, if you have further questions you can send a message to the university by clicking on the ‘contact’ button on the course listing.

  9. Mahid says:

    Hi.I’m mahid.I’m from Bangladesh.I’m a photographer.Now I wanted to do a course about photography.So how can I take admission to any photographic college and how can i get visa.What should I do to get visa.
    May I therefor pray and hope you will be kind enough to help me to do a course in any good photographic college.

  10. kenny says:

    I am kenny I love study computer science And I want too know more about engineering computer repairing

  11. Thiago Duncan Botha says:

    am duncan and it has been my dream to study accounting and finance in london because my parents are poor, can not affod to pay me from any other college

  12. williba says:

    My name is williba lam interested to study in kingstone universities in london the qualification i have is WASSCE…..And iam from poor family my parent can’t afford to paid fee… nt doing anything for a livin….please i need a help toward the scohlarship and student visa….i want to study biochemistry as a course….

  13. Kanishka Sharma says:

    Helllooo… I want to take admission in UK college for MBBS program with scholarship

  14. Abel Kandapaki says:

    Study Master at Economic

  15. sevor robert says:

    please. i am à first degree holder in early childhood éducation and à ghanaian, i wish to continue with thé master’s degree in thé same area. i had second class upper and would want help by outlining master’s programmes that will b suitable in to continue.
    due to financial contraints, Can you please assist me in acquiring scholarship in uk.

    • Study London says:

      Hello, most universities accept a second class upper degree from Ghana for entry into masters programmes. I would recommend you use the course search to identify relevant courses on offer in London. The course listing usually states the tuition fees for each course. With regards to scholarships, please read our Scholarship Advice to help you with your search.

  16. Mirwais says:

    I am mirwais Mayar from Afghanistan,I am really interested in studying medical in UK . My family can’t pay money for studying in UK so there is any free scholarship for me that covers tuition fee and other expenses

  17. Ahmad Masih says:

    I am Ahmad Masih Walizada ,I want to take my bachelor in engineering so there is any scholarship for me?

  18. Ibrahim says:

    i am ibrahim a sierra leonean i want to study in the UK physics manly is there time and space for my application? do get back to me ASAP

  19. chrisantus says:

    Hello am chrisantus and I really want to study international relations in the UK .I just completed senior high school.can u help me

  20. Alemayehu Tadesa says:

    Hello,I am Alemayehu from Ethiopia and currently graduated with water resource and irrigation engineering from Hawassa university this year.I want to certified with leadership course from london univesity.How I attend this course please?with best regard!

    • Study London says:

      Hello Alemayehu. Please use the course search to search for available courses in London. Once you have found suitable courses to apply to, you can go to the universities’ websites and complete the online application.

  21. Antwi Godwin says:

    Dear sir/madam,,i am Bsc Business Management student already enrolled in a University of Education-Winneba in Ghana and completed my first year this May2015 with 2nd class Upper. I would be glad to be enrolled in a UK University as a Business management Full time student.Please can i apply with the transcript results of my first and second year studies from my university?
    please if so, then what qualification name will my trancript results be classified under?

    Thank You

    • Study London says:

      Hello, yes you can apply with your transcripts from your university in Ghana. Usually, students from Ghana have to take a foundation year (if they have WASSCE) before they can start an undergraduate course in the UK. However, many universities accept applications from students who have completed one or two years at a university in Ghana instead. Therefore, you can apply to study a bachelor degree in business management in the UK. You can use the course search to find relevant courses in London.

  22. JOEL says:

    how can i study there.

  23. Jennifer Peter says:

    My name is Jennifer Peter l am interested to study in London universities, the qualification i have is WAEC SSCE in Nigeria. please how can I apply?

  24. hezekiah says:

    Hi. My name is Hezekiah Danlami am a Nigerian running my diploma program in Accounting and also am a wassce holder, I really want to further my education in london, I need help on what to do. Hope to hear from you soon

  25. Sanhvilai says:

    I really want to study in England,because i need to get a good job.I also really want to come back to Laos and develop Laos country.

  26. Nyako says:

    Hello my name is Nyako from Gambia I really want to study medicine, nursing and health in London and what are the requirements you need before studying this area

    • Study London says:

      Hi Nyako, medicine and nursing are two separate degree courses. It can be difficult for international students to get a place on either of them as priority is given to British students. However, a small number of spaces on medicine courses are reserved for international students. You can take a look at the medicine application guide here. You can also use the course search to see which universities offer the courses you are interested in.

  27. Mugisha Rene Patient says:

    I’m patient.I’m Rwandan,I completed my high school in 2016 in science and I really want to continue my education in UK about engineering so plz allow me to get that opportunity

  28. Elfteda says:

    please am a student of seventh day adventist nursing and midwifery training college In Ghana but I want to study public health at city university but my qualification is wassce please can I apply with my wassce

    • Study London says:

      Hello, students who have completed WASSCE are usually required to complete a one year foundation course before starting a bachelor degree. Most universities in the UK offer foundation courses or can recommend other education providers. Please use the course search to find a relevant degree course in London and then contact the university for further information about their foundation courses.


    my name Abdullahi, from nigeria I am realy interesting how can I apply and study pharmacy

  30. john lwanga says:

    Hi i like your struggle towards young generations’ future.
    My concern is about a diploma second class upper in electrical engineering from uganda can make me qualify for a bachlar in telecomm7nication engineering under full schlorship
    Thanks am john

  31. haider says:

    Hi I am Haider from pakistan.I want to study chemistry in london. my qualification is fsc and also studying bsc chemistry in a local university. but I am interested to study in UK

  32. James says:

    hi,l’m James from kenya.I wish to study software engineering, after completing my CPE studies,can I apply to study the course as I await my results.

    • Study London says:

      Hi James, yes you can apply for a course in the UK before you receive your results. If your application is successful, you will receive a ‘conditional offer’ with the condition that you have to submit your results by a certain date. Hope this helps!

Search Courses

Course Type:

Advanced Search

Register to download our free Study in London guidebook.

Register now ×