Heriot-Watt University has roots in Scotland but its reach is global, with over 30,000 students studying worldwide. It has campuses in Scotland, Dubai and Malaysia, as well as 150 learning partners around the world. Students can take advantage of opportunities to transfer their study between campuses through the Go Global programme, so there are plenty of opportunities to meet the world.

Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF)

TEF Silver is awarded to institutions that deliver high-quality teaching, learning and outcomes for their students, and consistently exceed "rigorous national quality requirements" for higher education in the UK. Find out more about TEF.

International Student Statistics

2,325 international students in 2017–18

Welcome Arrangements

  • The Global Student Office arranges for students arriving at the start of Welcome Week to be met by student ambassadors at Edinburgh Airport, and directed to transport to the Edinburgh and Scottish Borders campuses.
  • It also arranges the International Welcome and Information Fair, and a programme of service and orientation events including study in the UK, on-campus police registration, UK banking and adjusting to life in the UK.
  • In addition, a structured two–three day induction programme lets new arrivals meet other students, find out about their programme of study, and the support available within the university.

English Language Requirements

The following are a general guide but there are some exceptions: students are asked to check with the relevant academic school within the university.

  • Undergraduate students: IELTS 6.0; PTE 57; Cambridge 169-175 or FCE grade B, HWU Academic English programme grade C (or grade B for some programmes). Note, Actuarial Science requires IELTS 6.5 and Languages programmes require IELTS 7.0 or equivalent.
  • Postgraduate students: IELTS 6.5; PTE 62; Cambridge 176-184 or CAE grade C, HWU Academic English programme grade C (or grade B for some programmes). Note, Languages programmes require IELTS 7.0 or equivalent.
  • There are some exemptions for students who have previously undertaken degree-level study in English or who have followed a high school programme of A levels or IB.
  • The pre-sessional Academic English course is recommended for students who are not at the required level or who wish to build their confidence in English and develop their study strategies before they start their degree. Successful progression to a Heriot-Watt degree in the same academic year attracts a discount of 50% of the pre-sessional fee.

Accommodation for International Students

  • All new, full-time students arriving in semester 1 (September) and studying for at least two semesters, are covered by the accommodation guarantee, provided their application for accommodation is received by the advertised deadline date. The university guarantees to make an offer of accommodation, either on- or off-campus, to all students in their first year of study in Edinburgh and Galashiels. The guarantee does not explicitly apply to students who arrive in semester 2 (January), however every effort will be made to assist.
  • The majority of university accommodation is on the campus in either self-catered flats or halls of residence with high speed broadband, and Wi-Fi across campus.
  • International students are spread across the accommodation so that they are able to meet students from different countries and different courses of study.
  • University accommodation is offered on either 40-week or 50-week contract lengths. Accommodation is available from the date of commencement of the contract and for the duration of the contract. Early arrival and or late departures should not be assumed.

Bursaries and Scholarships

  • The University offers a range of jointly-funded and externally-funded scholarships for international students (e.g. Saltire, Commonwealth, Chevening).
  • International Merit Award: £1,500–3,000 for international students applying for any undergraduate or taught postgraduate programme based at the university's UK campuses. Eligible students will be identified as part of the academic admissions process; successful candidates will have the award detailed on their offer letters and CAS letters. To secure a scholarship, students simply accept the offer of a place to study at the university. Please note, awards are made on a first-come, first-served basis. For undergraduate students, Merit Awards are awarded for the first year of study only.

Ongoing Support

  • The Global Student Office (GSO) offers a range of support services to international students via daily drop-in sessions and one-to-one appointments.
  • Support is provided in areas of visa and immigration (including visa extensions), and advice on living in the UK.
  • GSO also supports international students who have any issues with their student visas, Residency Permits (BRPs) or if they have travel queries.

Quick Guides to International Tuition Fees and Finance