Student life at Heriot-Watt
We pride ourself on being an international university; international students make up about one third of our student population.
We are pleased to be one of the recommended British universities by the Omani Ministry of Higher Education, which sponsors Omani students to come and study with us on a new scholarship scheme.
Our most popular subjects with Omani students are:
- Civil Engineering
- Architectural Engineering
- Mechanical Engineering
- Chemical Engineering
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering
- Computer Science
- Petroleum Engineering
- Food Science
Heriot-Watt students are able to join in different student societies through which they can participate in different activities to learn about Edinburgh and learn about the great cultural heritage.
These entry requirements are intended as a guide only. Please contact us or the School's admissions tutor to find out the actual requirements for the programme you want to study.
- Thanawya Amma / Secondary School leaving certificate with a minimum 85% GPA with minimum 85% in Maths, Physics and Chemistry.
- If you do not meet the entry requirements, you can complete an Undergraduate Certificate at our International Study Centre. Providing you successfully complete the Undergraduate Certificate with a score of 65% or over, you will be eligible to fast-track to Level 2 of an undergraduate programme at Heriot-Watt.
English language requirements
English language requirements for entry to Heriot-Watt University programmes
To study at Heriot-Watt University you must demonstrate that your English level is high enough for university study. We usually ask for the following English language scores:
|Heriot-Watt English requirements||IELTS||TOEFL iBT||Pearson PTE||Cambridge|
||89 overall||62 overall||CAE (grade C) overall|
Listening grade C
Speaking grade C
Reading grade C
Writing grade C
* Exceptions for postgraduate programmes: Languages: IELTS 7.5 or equivalent; Computer Science: IELTS 6.0 or equivalent.
|Undergraduate**||6.0||81 overall||57 overall||FCE (grade B) overall|
Listening grade C
Speaking grade C
Reading grade C
Writing grade C
** Exceptions for undergraduate programmes: Actuarial Science: IELTS 6.5 or equivalent; Physics: IELTS 6.5 or equivalent; Textiles & Design: IELTS 6.5 or equivalent; Languages: IELTS 7.5 or equivalent.
Students are advised to contact the individual departments for minimum skills scores for listening, speaking, reading and writing.
English language requirements for visa purposes
The UKBA requires all students to be at the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) B2 level in order to study on a degree programme. Students must have CEFR B2 level in all 4 components of an approved Secure English Language Test (SELT).
Heriot-Watt's English language requirements are higher than the UKBA requirements, and it is the Heriot-Watt English language requirements which you will need to meet to be accepted onto your degree. In most cases, if you meet the Heriot-Watt English language requirements you will also meet the entry requirements for a Tier 4 visa.
In very few cases, you may be accepted onto a Heriot-Watt degree but be lower than the UKBA requirement in just one component (listening, speaking, reading or writing). In this case, you can either re-take a SELT or you can join our pre-sessional academic English programme.
|CEFR level||IELTS||TOEFL iBT||Pearson PTE||Cambridge|
|B2 for degree level study||Overall: 5.5
|Overall: First Certificate (FCE) grade C
Note: If you have completed your previous studies with English as the medium of instruction, either in the UK or overseas, you will still be expected to take a SELT unless you come from one of the majority English-speaking countries as follows:
- Antigua and Barbuda
- The Bahamas
- New Zealand
- St Kitts and Nevis
- St Lucia
- St Vincent and the Grenadines
- Trinidad and Tobago
- United States of America
If you do not meet the English language requirements
If you do not meet our English language requirements, you can apply to one of our academic English programmes, which are specifically designed to prepare you with the language and study skills needed for academic study. If you pass the assessments on the Academic English language programme, you will be accepted onto your degree programme without the need to take IELTS or another SELT.
We offer 3, 6 and 12 week programmes; your academic School will be able to advise you on which programme you should take.
If you are a non-native speaker of English, we strongly recommend that you complete at least some part of our academic English programme before you start your studies, even if your English is already of a high level.
Find out more and apply for an academic English programme now.
Tuition fees are listed alongside each programme in the online prospectuses.
Tuition fees are higher for international students. If you are unsure what your residency status is, you can complete a fee status enquiry form, which allows us to assess whether you have a relevant connection to the UK that might positively influence your fee status.
Learn more about applying for student support in Scotland.
Scholarships & bursaries
At Heriot-Watt we believe that a university education is an investment in your future. That is why we offer a generous package of scholarships to encourage and support well qualified, ambitious students to come and study with us. See the full list of scholarships that you may be eligible to apply for.
Our representatives in Oman
We work with approved representatives in Oman who can help you apply and enrol on your chosen programme. Find your nearest representative.
Visa & immigration information
Because you are from a visa national country you will have to apply for a UK visa to come to study at Heriot-Watt University regardless of the length of time you expect to study in the UK.
Student Visitor Visa
The Student Visitor Visa is only for non-EEA visa national students coming to study a short course of less than 6 months (or less than 11 months for an English language course). With this visa, you cannot work in the UK and cannot extend it from within the UK.
- To apply for a Student Visitor visa, you need to complete the VAF1D form.
- Learn more about applying for a Student Visitor visa.
Tier 4 Student Visa (in-country application)
The Tier 4 Student visa is for all non-EEA students coming to study in the UK for over 6 months.
To apply for this visa you need to fill the VAF9 and VAF9 Appendix 8: Tier 4 (General) forms and provide the requested supporting documents as specified in the Tier 4 guidance. You will also have to provide your CAS number from your Tier 4 sponsor (Heriot-Watt University), and your biometric features (10-digit finger scans and a digital photograph) in person as part of the application process.
- Learn more about applying for a Tier 4 Student visa.
- Find your nearest visa application processing centre in your home country.
- Learn more about bringing your family to the UK.
Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS)
If you are a postgraduate student you may need to apply for an additional certificate under the Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS).
Only certain programmes are affected by the scheme; your academic School at Heriot-Watt will send you more information about this along with your unconditional offer. Or you can check the Foreign & Commonwealth Office's list of programmes that request the ATAS certificate.
Your ATAS certificate should be printed and submitted as part of the visa application process.
Further information and help can be found on Heriot-Watt University's International Student Advisors' Office (ISAO) website.
Working in the UK
Tier 4 student visa holders studying at higher educational institutions are allowed to work up to 20 hours per week during term time, and full time during vacations if studying at degree level or above, or studying a foundation degree (a programme that leads to a qualification at level 8 of the SCQF).
Students studying any other programme will only be able to work up to 10 hours per week during term time, and full time during vacations.
Please note that term time covers all periods of your programme when you are doing academic work, and includes for example preparing for examinations and time spent producing MSc projects, dissertations and writing up thesis.
Learn more about working during your studies.
Working conditions for Tier 4 dependants
- Dependants of students from outside Europe who come to the UK to study for less than 12 months will be prohibited from working
- Dependants of students from outside Europe who come to the UK to study a programme that is below degree level (except a foundation degree programme) will also be prohibited from working
- Dependants of students from outside Europe who come to the UK to study a programme at degree level for 12 months or more will be able to work during their stay in the UK (part time or full time).
Please note: from 4 July 2011, non EEA international students can only bring their dependants to the UK if they are coming to study at postgraduate level on a programme lasting for at least 12 months (or 6 months if you are a government-sponsored student). To find out if your family members can join you in the UK, please see the guide for Tier 4 family.
Find out more about dependants and bringing your family to the UK.
You can visit our Careers Advisory Service website for more guidance on employment during and after your studies.
Living in the UK
Before you arrive
You should visit Heriot-Watt's new students website, especially the information for international students, which will help you prepare for your first few weeks in the country and at university.
When you travel to the UK, you will need to make sure that you bring with you all the correspondence you had with us, as well as proof that you have enough money to support yourself. For more information on documents you'll need to have available for immigration control at the airport please check the UKCISA website.
The ISAO organises a free shuttle bus service from Edinburgh Airport to the Edinburgh Campus at the start of Freshers' Week (see the new students website for details). There is also a free connecting bus service from the Edinburgh Campus to the Scottish Borders Campus in Galashiels.
If you are planning to arrive outwith Freshers' Week, you'll need to make your own travel arrangements. You can find more information on transport on the campus pages.
You can find information on living on any of our campuses, as well as details on living in private rented accommodation, on the accommodation pages.
You can find our which healthcare services you are entitled to while living in the UK on the Medical Centre website.