We use cookies on this site. By browsing our site you agree to our use of cookies. Close this message Find out more

Home > Study here > Postgraduate > Applying > Admissions policy and procedures
More in this section Applying

Admissions policy and procedures

Please select one of the following headings for related information regarding admission policies and procedures.

Fair admissions statement

At Royal Holloway we’re committed to operating a fair, transparent and professional admissions process, with all applications being considered on an equal basis by a trained admissions team.  

In support of fair admissions, Royal Holloway strives to:

  • ensure admissions decisions are based on achievements and potential
  • make sure fair admissions processes are centrally-based to ensure equality of educational opportunity, regardless of the social background of applicants
  • promote admissions processes that enable the fair treatment of each individual applicant without direct or indirect discrimination
  • give full consideration to applications
  • guarantee admissions decisions are consistent and each stage of the admissions process is carried out with honesty and integrity by staff with relevant and up-to-date knowledge and expertise
  • create parity of esteem between GCE A-level and other pre-HE qualification routes and fully recognise a wide range of international, access-based, and vocationally-related qualifications , and other indicators of potential
  • ensure the effective operation of the admissions process
  • make clear the criteria by which admissions decisions are made
  • encourage and support applicants from diverse backgrounds by minimising procedural and financial obstacles to entry
  • clearly document admissions decisions.

Admissions policy

The Admissions Policy sets out the position of Royal Holloway on key matters relating to the recruitment and admissions to all undergraduate and postgraduate (taught and research) programmes of study. It is strongly recommended that you download and read a copy.

Access agreements 

Royal Holloway is committed to widening participation and fair access, and recognises the many benefits that an inclusive and representative student population brings to individual students and the university as a whole.

Our position on key related matters can be found in our Access agreement 

Access agreements set out a university's fee limits and the access measures it intends to put in place for example outreach work and financial support.

You can find Royal Holloway's access agreements on the Office for Fair Access' website.

Terms and conditions of admission

When you accept an offer of a place to study at Royal Holloway, University of London a legal contract is formed between you and the university on the basis of the terms and conditions of the offer. This document summarises those terms and conditions. It contains important information and you need to read it carefully and ensure you understand its contents before accepting your offer.

General student regulations

We advise that you make yourself familiar with the general student regulations at the point of accepting your offer.

Under 18s policy

The majority of students at Royal Holloway are 18 or above, and the academic life and social environment of the university reflect this. However, we recognise that some individuals who have already met the entry requirements for study are in a position to commence their university studies at a younger age.

The university strongly recommends that applicants who will be under 17 years of age on entry consider carefully whether they would be able to benefit fully from the educational and social opportunities which are on offer. The university does not accept an in loco parentis responsibility for children (i.e. those under 18 years of age at entry). The university does however recognise that it has a duty of care and is committed to practice that protects children, young people and vulnerable adults from harm.

Applicants who will be under the age of 16 on entry are not permitted to enrol at the university. Any such applicants will, where appropriate, be offered a deferred entry place. If this is not possible the application will be rejected.

Applicants who will be under 18 years of age on the published start date of the programme, and their parents and guardians, must confirm to the university as a condition of registration:

  • that they understand the nature of the university and the programme, the circumstances in which the individual would be studying and living, and the limitations of the university’s supervisory role
  • that the contractual arrangements for the individual to study at the university are underwritten by a qualified person of adult status
  • that arrangements would be in place to support the individual in an emergency, including the existence of a qualified person in the UK willing to act as guardian
  • that the individual will obey the restrictions that English law places on minors.

If you are under 18 years of age, then you will need the consent of your parents or guardians in order to study here. Please click here to read more information and to fill out the necessary forms.

Fee assessment procedure

Your fee status will be provisionally assessed on the information supplied on your application form. 

If you disagree with this initial assessment then please complete a fee status questionnaire and submit it with photocopies of any relevant documentation.

Who assesses my questionnaire?

A fully trained member of the Admissions team will assess your fee status questionnaire, once received. The Admissions Office follows guidelines suggested by the UK Council for International Student Advice (UKCISA). 

The College seeks to make fair and accurate judgments at all times. Should we require further information, we will contact you in writing.

Please note:  we cannot enter into a discussion about fee status assessment over the telephone or email as we must have all the paperwork here.

Please also note: that if you do not submit the necessary documents, this will delay a fee assessment being made and therefore possibly delay your future enrolment to Royal Holloway.

Where can I find the results of my assessment?

You will be able to view the outcome on the application portal. At this page, you will need to input your personal student reference number, which is located at the top of your offer letter.

How to appeal the fee status decision?

Should you wish to appeal the decision made, please contact us for further advice. 

Alternatively, you may wish to consult the UKCISA website for further information.

What documents should I submit?

Some applicants will need to submit documentary evidence supporting their fee status questionnaire. Not all applicants will need to submit these documents. 

Typically, this would apply to students who have not always lived in the UK, are not British citizens, or have been absent from the UK for a significant period of time. 

This would also apply to non-EU International students who wish to claim Home / EU status for fees. The documents may be one or more of the following:

  • photocopies of your passport or proof of citizenship
  • proof of Indefinite Leave to Remain / Right of Abode
  • proof of Exceptional Leave to Remain / Enter / Humanitarian Protection / Discretionary Leave or Proof of Refugee status
  • If your main residence has been outside of the EU then we would require proof that you have been regularly returning to your original EU country.  e.g. Flight


In certain circumstances, we may also request a letter from your parents' employer, should your parents' work have taken you out of the UK on a temporary basis.

Where photocopies of documents have been provided, applicants will be expected to show the original documents at enrolment.

Who should I contact for further advice?

UKCISA publish comprehensive guidance notes on fee status. We would recommend that you take a look at their website for further information before completing the fee assessment questionnaire.

What is the deadline for submitting a fee status questionnaire?

We recommend that if you disagree with our fee assessment you should send in a fee status questionnaire before 31 July.

Course deposits refund policy

Cancelling your acceptance within 14 days

When you accept your offer of a place to study at Royal Holloway, you have the right to cancel and withdraw within 14 days unless you have already started your programme of study in which case the refund policy for enrolled students applies. Any deposits or part of any tuition fees will be refunded according to the below table;

 within 14 days more than 14 days
Pre-sessional language tuition fee

Full refund

(minus £100 pounds where a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) letter has been issued)

Full refund minus a £350 administration charge

Offer acceptance fee (£1,000)

Full refund

(minus £100 where a CAS has been issued)

No refund

except in the below circumstances

Deposit paid for CAS (£2,000)

Full refund

(minus £100 where a CAS has been issued)

No refund

except in the below circumstances


Cancelling your acceptance after 14 days

After the 14 day cooling off period, deposits are non-transferable and non-refundable except in the following circumstances where:

  • You fail to meet the academic conditions of your conditional offer and are rejected from the course. You must provide an original transcript and degree certificate to verify your final results.

  • You fail to meet the English language requirements stipulated in your offer. You must provide proof that you have taken a recognised English language test within five months of your course start date. If you have not previously taken an appropriate English language test and fail to do so prior to 31 August you will not qualify for a refund.

  • You are attending a pre-sessional English Language programme at Royal Holloway and fail to meet progression requirements to the main degree.  Please note that you must show evidence that you have made every effort to complete it successfully, i.e. attended classes and submitted any required assessments.

  • Your Tier 4 Student Visa application has been refused. A copy of the visa refusal document must be sent to the university.

  • You have applied for funding from a recognised funding body for the full year’s tuition fees and are unsuccessful in securing the funding necessary for your studies. Documentary proof must be provided.

  • The College cancels the course to which you have applied.

  • Sympathetic consideration will be given in cases of exceptional circumstances, such as serious illness, or a death in the immediate family. Please note documentary evidence of such circumstances will need to be provided. Decisions on refunding the deposit in such cases will be made solely at the College's discretion.

If you meet any of the above criteria you should send an email to admissions including all of the following details:


  • your full name

  • date of birth

  • your student reference number 

  • a scanned copy of your documentary evidence.

All requests for deposit refunds need to be submitted no later than 30 days after the official start date of your course. 

Important notes:

  1. You will not qualify for a deposit refund if:

    • Your offer from the College is withdrawn due to fraudulent documentation or false information in your application at any point in the application stage.
    • Your Tier 4 Visa is refused due to fraudulent documentation.
    • Your study plans have changed, for example you have decided to study elsewhere or are no longer planning to study abroad, except when you have informed us of this decision within 14 days of making a deposit payment.
  2. It is strongly recommended that for the purposes of securing a study visa, you pay 50 per cent of your course tuition fee as a first payment to the College

    This would include the compulsory deposit element. Advance payment of 50 per cent of your tuition fee is not required to obtain your place on the course, however, in this way the College can ensure the total amount paid is reported on the required CAS, rather than just the deposit.

    In the event that you are unable to take up your studies at Royal Holloway, you would receive a refund of the amount you have paid, minus the compulsory deposit (unless you qualify for a deposit refund under the terms outlined above).

  3. A deposit paid to the College will be counted as a payment towards your course tuition fee.

  4. Any deposit refund agreed by the College will only be made to the person who made the original payment.

Academic excellence scheme

This scheme is aimed at some of our most academically gifted applicants and is open to individuals who have taken GCSEs or iGCSEs or who are taking the International Baccalaureate Diploma

In order to be considered for this scheme, applicants are required to demonstrate a record of outstanding academic achievement.

Applicants who meet these requirements will be made a conditional offer on receipt of their UCAS application and will be given the opportunity to have this offer changed to unconditional should Royal Holloway be made their firm choice.  For those applicants applying for a degree in the Mathematics Department, instead of an unconditional offer, they will receive a revised offer requiring grade A in A level Maths.

If you have any further questions about the scheme, please refer to the frequently asked questions section of this document.

Complaints procedure

Should you wish to complain about the way in which your application has been administered, the full procedure is outlined in the Admissions Policy.

In the first instance, please contact Admissions below informally at;

Admissions Office
Royal Holloway, University of London
TW20 0EX

Telephone: +44 (0)1784 414944
Email:  study@royalholloway.ac.uk
Fax: +44 (0)1784 473662 


Guidance for teachers

To see our guidance for teachers of applicants or prospective applicants, please click here.



Comment on this page

Did you find the information you were looking for? Is there a broken link or content that needs updating? Let us know so we can improve the page.

Note: If you need further information or have a question that cannot be satisfied by this page, please call our switchboard on +44 (0)1784 434455.

This window will close when you submit your comment.

Add Your Feedback