About UCAS Points

UCAS Points (also known as the UCAS Tariff) are a way of measuring the relative value of all post-16 qualifications in the UK.

Points are awarded according to the UCAS Tariff, which assigns a numerical score to the possible grades that be can achieved in each type of qualification. As you would expect, the higher the grade you achieve, the higher the number of points.

Why are UCAS Points important?

Some universities and courses will make offers based on the total number of points that you earn.

According to UCAS, two thirds of university courses don't use the Tariff to advertise course requirements, but for those do, it allows greater flexibility over the grade combination needed to meet the requirements.

For example, while a grade-based offer (e.g. ABB) means a student must acheive a certain combination of grades, an offer based on UCAS Points (e.g. 120) allows a student to use any combination of grades to meet the threshold.

How have UCAS Points changed?

You may have heard that UCAS Points are changing, starting with students applying to university for 2017 entry.

While this is true, there is certainly no need to worry – the changes are minor, and the system is fundamentally very similar to its predecessor. Here's what you need to know:

How many UCAS Points do I have?

Use the following to calculate how your AS and A Level grades are converted into UCAS Points:

AS LevelA LevelUCAS Points
 A* 56
A 48
B 40
C 32
D 24
A 20
B E 16
C 12
D 10
E 6

Use the following to calculate how your Scottish Highers are converted into UCAS Points:

Scottish HigherUCAS Points
A 33
B 27
C 21
D 15

Use the following to calculate how your Scottish Advanced Highers are converted into UCAS Points:

Scottish Advanced HigherUCAS Points
A 56
B 48
C 40
D 32

Use the following to calculate how your Advanced Welsh Baccalaureate is converted into UCAS Points:

Advanced Welsh BaccalaureateUCAS Points
A* 56
A 48
B 40
C 32
D 24
E 16

Use the following to calculate how your International Baccalaureate is converted into UCAS Points:

International BaccalaureateUCAS Points
H7 56
H6 48
H5 32
H4 24
H3 12
H2 0
H1 0

Finally, athough there are many different types of BTEC, among the most popular is the Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Diploma. Use the following to calculate how this qualification converts into UCAS Points (for a full list of how BTECs convert into UCAS Points, please visit the UCAS website):

BTEC Level 3 National DiplomaUCAS Points
D*D* 112
D*D 104
DD 96
DM 80
MM 64
MP 48
PP 32

Why are the UCAS Points scores in the league tables so high?

The Entry Standards column on our league tables is not a measure of the number of UCAS Points required to get into a university – it is the average of the total number of points held by new undergraduate students at that institution (including any recognised qualifications that students may hold but weren’t needed for entry, such as General Studies A Level, or AS Levels in other subjects).

This method is more telling than simply comparing the average entry requirements, as although two universities may have similar entry requirements, the academic standard of students enrolling may be different.

For example, while Course X at University Y may list grades to the value of 300 points in the entry requirements, many students may exceed this score. The average score of successful applicants to Course X may end up being 380 UCAS Points, but that doesn't change the fact that it only take 300 points to be accepted onto the course.

Also note that, due to the data available to league table publishers such as The Complete University Guide, the new UCAS Points Tariff will not feature in the rankings until 2019. Hence, until then the old UCAS Points Tariff will be used.

For help understanding the Entry Standards figures used in our league tables, the following table shows how A Levels were converted into UCAS Points for students up to and including those who started university in 2016:

AS LevelA LevelUCAS Points (until 2016)
 A* 140
A 120
B 100
C 80
A D 60
B 50
C E 40
D 30
E 20


You can find a complete list of tariff tables and more information on the UCAS website.

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