National flag of China

Student life at Heriot-Watt

We pride ourselves on being an international university and international students make up about one third of our student population.

Heriot-Watt University has been a popular destination for Chinese students for many years. We currently have around 300 Chinese students studying with us, about two-thirds of whom are studying on postgraduate programmes.

Student societies

Chinese students can meet each other and socialise via the Chinese Students and Scholars Association.

Meet our graduates from China

Entry requirements

For more details on our application process, get help with your application.

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.


  • If you would like to study in the UK and do not meet the entry requirements for our degree programmes, we recommend that you take a Foundation Programmes which are available at our Dubai and Malaysia campuses.

Undergraduate programmes

Year 1 entry

  • National Senior High School Graduation Examination (Hui Kao) acceptable at average 75% or better. (Entry requirements to some programmes may be higher, and each programme also has its own requirements on specific subjects.)
  • Heriot-Watt now except Gao Kao qualifications, please see the below for year 1 and 2 entry requirements:
Gao Kao Scores
Heriot-Watt subjects Subject direction* in Gao Kao Entry criteria
Year 1 entry Year 2 entry
Social Sciences and Design Either direction In percentage:
In percentage:
    70% for AMS programmes 80% for AMS programmes
    Local Score:
National Paper: 450
Jiangsu Paper: 288
Hainan Paper: 564
Shanghai Paper: 396
Local Score:
National Paper: 525
Jiangsu Paper: 336
Hainan Paper: 658
Shanghai Paper: 462
Science and Engineering Science direction In percentage:
In percentage:
    In Score:
National Paper: 450
Jiangsu Paper: 288
Hainan Paper: 564
Shanghai Paper: 396
In Score:
National Paper: 525
Jiangsu Paper: 336
Hainan Paper: 658
Shanghai Paper: 462

Year 2 entry

  • If you have obtained very good grades in qualifications such as A-Levels, International Baccalaureate or Higher National Diploma (HND), you would be eligible to apply for advanced entry into Year 2 of our programmes. You can find the requirements for each programme on its own page in the online undergraduate prospectus.

Postgraduate programmes

  • For most of our Masters level programmes we require a good first degree in a relevant subject. Please see the below table for further details.
  • For those students who have a Chinese three year diploma (Da Zhuan) in computer science related subjects, you need to study a Graduate Diploma in IT then, if successful, you can progress to Masters studies in all relevant programmes.
Entry Requirement for PG Programmes
Subject Area Degree classification required 985 University 211 University Other Institutions
Science and Engineering 1st 70% 72% 75%
Science and Engineering Other than 1st 65% 68% 70%
Business   65% 68% 70%
Art and Design   65% 68% 70%
    *Portfolio requirement for design courses

Exceptions to the above:

  • For Masters Programmes in Actuarial Mathematics and Statistics students are required to have 80% or above.  
  • For Masters Programmes in Brewing and Distilling students are required to have 80% or above.  
  • For Masters Programmes in Photonics, students are required to have 75% or above.  

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.

Tuition fees

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 and 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.

The following scholarships are available to students from China who choose to study at Heriot-Watt University's UK campuses:

Our local office in China

Mr. Zhongyi Wang, Mr. Zibo Wang, Ms.Jiajing Cao, Ms.Tianli Huang and Ms. Yizao Hong are Heriot-Watt University's in-country representatives based at our office in Beijing. All of our representatives can tell you what it's like to study with us here in Scotland. They are also on hand to offer advice and support to prospective students on how to apply for any of our programmes.

The China & East Asia team attends a large number of education fairs across Mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and South Korea every year. The fairs are either organised by the Ministry of Education or Heriot-Watt’s agents. They also attend the China International Education Expo in March and the China International Education Exhibition Tour in October. Meanwhile, they work with a number of Chinese partner universities and approved representatives in China who can help you apply and enrol on your chosen programme.

Visa and immigration information

Please see our International Student Advisors Office (ISAO) website for information and guidance on:

Key information

Yizao Hong

Xinyue Pang (Helen)

Tianli Huang 黄天骊 (Echo)

Zhongyi Wang

Zibo Wang (Simon)

Jiajing Cao (Marissa)

China and East Asia Office