We recognise that not all applicants will have had the same educational opportunities. If you don't meet the entry qualifications for one of our degree programmes, there are other routes to entry that may be available to you:

Combining your school, college & vocational qualifications

You may be able to use a combination of your secondary school, college and vocational qualifications or work experience to gain entry to the programme of your choice at Heriot-Watt University.

The Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF) compares the Levels of Scottish qualifications - including Highers, SVQs and HNDs - on the same scale, so you can see how your qualifications measure up against the type of programme and point of entry you are seeking. In addition to this, you need to check with the University whether the content of what you have studied has adequately prepared you for entry. 

You can find out more on the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF) website.

The Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) can offer more information on the different qualifications that you can achieve.

School pupils in Edinburgh & the Lothians

If you are a pupil attending a state school in Edinburgh and the Lothians, you may be eligible for support from the Lothian Equal Access Programme for Schools (LEAPS).

LEAPS aims to promote the benefits of higher education to young people and help prepare them for the transition from school to university or college. Some pupils may find that their family has little or no experience of higher education, and that there have been adverse circumstances that have affected their studies over the years. If this is the case, then LEAPS can help you to find the study path that's right for you.

Mature students

If you are 21 years old or over in the year in you want to start your degree studies, you will be classed as a mature student. Traditional entry requirements may be relaxed for you if you didn't gain formal qualifications at school but are able to show that you have gained relevant work experience and have successfully completed studies recently.

If you are a mature student with few or no qualifications or out of date qualifications, you can work towards the entry requirements by studying an Access Course through an organisation like Scottish Wider Access Programme (SWAP).

SWAP offer Access Courses at a number of partner colleges and universities in Scotland, which will help you achieve the entry standards required for the degree programme you want to study.