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Durham University

Department of Mathematical Sciences

How to Apply

Please read this before submitting an application. You may find the answer to any further questions on our Frequently Asked Questions page. Even better, why not arrange a visit to see for yourself! Take advantage of one of our Open Days. If you would like to register your interest in attending an open day please leave your details on the online form.

Test of Mathematics for University Admission

In order to promote fairness and to enhance the possibility for alternate offers, the University uses the Test of Mathematics for University Admissions (TMUA) in conjunction with the Cambridge Assessment Admissions Testing service. The test is taken in November and the results are sent by Cambridge Assessment Admissions Testing directly to students at the end of November. All information concerning the Test (including whether it was taken at all) will be provided to us by the applicants on an entirely voluntary basis. Taking part in the TMUA test can therefore only increase the chances of receiving an offer. A pass (i.e. a score of 6.5 or above) will guarantee a reduced offer A*AA or equivalent. However we will treat scores below 6.5 down to a certain threshold as positive evidence, increasing your chances of getting a standard A*A*A offer. For 2019 entry scores of 4.5 and over will be counted as positive evidence so we advise you to release your score to Durham if it is 4.5 or over. (Those students already registered for MAT may substitute those results in place of our own test, if they do not wish to take both.)

(Note that the TMUA will currently only be used as part of its admissions decision for single honours maths degrees G100 and G103, and will not be used for admission to Natural Sciences, even for Maths routes within Natural Sciences see here for more info).

More Information can be found at: Test of Mathematics for University Admission

Information will be available from most schools nationwide (Schools that currently administer STEP and MAT will be automatically registered).

Click to read more:

Please note that the number of offers we can make is limited and in recent years we have been unable to make offers to all the applicants we had graded as excellent. In order to distinguish between applicants, significant emphasis is placed on the TMUA. We also use any other available evidence of achievement in mathematics at AS-level (or above). We give such evidence much higher weighting than (predicted) achievement in other subjects including (predicted) achievement beyond 3 A-levels.

We also encourage candidates to take the Advanced Extension Award in Mathematics. Other evidence of ability and enthusiasm for higher level mathematics, including achievements in Mathematics Challenges or Olympiads, is considered favourably.

If you take the Admissions Test you will be able to release your scores to us - the CAAT will ask you to release your results to us soon after the results are released at the end of November.

For students taking the Oxford MAT, we will be able to use those scores in place of the TMUA. We will email to ask if you took it and give us permission to see your mark. It will be used in a similar way to the TMUA.

Note that without any such additional information, it is very difficult for us to distinguish between the majority of our applicants e.g. while the reference is important, it is very good for most of our applicants.

In order to select whom to make offers to, the applications are ranked. This ranking is based on evidence of merit and potential. Our main criterion is real ability and experience in Mathematics beyond GCSE level. Almost all applicants will be on course to meet or exceed our standard offer. Therefore our reply to the vast majority of requests for feedback for unsuccessful applications is simply that the application was ranked below the others: these candidates are still eligible, accomplished and in the top few percent nationally but regrettably we cannot make an offer to them. Please bear this in mind before making a specific request for feedback.

The University generally welcomes applications from students who intend to defer their entry for a year, although there are limits to the number of deferred places on offer.

University Scholarships

Durham University operates scholarship schemes designed to help recruit students with exceptional merit and potential in their academic studies, in music, the arts and sport. Particular arrangements exist for these schemes.

There are a number of scholarships that are available at the moment for prospective Undergraduate students. Please see the following webpages for further information.

Durham University Military Scholarship

The Graham and Joanna Barker Scholarship for Music

Vice-Chancellor's Scholarships for Sport, Music and Arts

For further information please contact Scholarships and Student Funding Office

Tel: +44 191 334 6395



Ian Cooper Bursary

The new Trevelyan College Ian Cooper Bursary offers a fantastic opportunity for home students from lower-middle income households to pursue academic excellence in a subject within the Faculty of Science. Applications open 5th September 2019 and close 15th January 2020 for students commencing full-time study in academic year 2020/21.

Ciência sem Fronteiras

Durham University is one of 70 UK universities participating in the Ciência sem Fronteiras Programme. This scheme awards scholarships to outstanding Brazilian scientists and students for one-year study abroad programmes, full PhDs, Sandwich PhDs and exchange at postdoctoral research level. Further details may be found at:

Disclaimer: This information is intended as a general guide to the Mathematics Department’s courses and facilities and forms no part of any contract between you and the University except as provided below. The pages are prepared in advance of the academic year to which they relate. The University makes every effort to ensure that the information contained here is accurate. Although reasonable steps are taken by the University to provide the courses and services described, the University cannot guarantee the provision of any course or facility. Any course may be altered or withdrawn owing to circumstances beyond the University of Durham's reasonable control. Such circumstances include (but are not limited to) industrial action, lack of demand, departure of key personnel, change in Government policy, withdrawal or reduction of funding, change of Law. The University will take such steps as are available to it to minimise the effect of any alteration or withdrawal of a course. Such steps may include the offer of a place on an alternative course.

All undergraduate applications to Durham University should be made through UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admissions Service).

Before you apply you should:

  • Research which course or courses you would like to study. All of our courses are shown on our Course Database. You can see whether a course is open by checking UCAS Course Search.
  • Decide whether you would like to state a college preference or submit an open application (where we allocate your college for you)
  • Check you can meet the entry requirements
  • Research tuition fees and living costs.

To begin your online application please go to UCAS Apply.