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Durham University


Contextual offers

Contextual Offers

Contextual Offers

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Here at Durham we welcome talented students from all backgrounds. We understand that not everyone has the same opportunities in life, and that things such as where you live, the school you attend and your social and economic background might have an impact on your educational achievement.

That’s why we use information from your UCAS application to take into account your individual background and experiences, and the impact these might have on your qualifications when we make a decision on your application.

Any offers we make using this information are called ‘contextual offers’ and they are available across all of our undergraduate courses. A contextual offer will be lower than our standard entry requirements, and you can find out what this offer is for the course you are interested in from UCAS course search or our courses database.

To be eligible for a contextual offer you must meet at least two of the following criteria:

  • Your home address postcode is classified as Quintile 1 or 2 of POLAR4 LPN*
  • Your home address postcode is classified as ACORN 4 or 5*
  • Your current or most recently attended school is classified as a UK state school
  • You are in receipt of free school meals

*please don’t use your school address as your home address on your UCAS application. If you use your school address then you cannot be considered for a contextual offer.

You’ll need to apply through UCAS by 15 January (though we can make contextual offers if you apply after this date as long as the course is still open). Remember that as we consider the whole of your application that your personal statement and reference are also important, and you’ll still need to meet any other admission requirements needed by the course to be considered.

These offers are also only available if you are classified as home for the purposes of fees.

Applications are automatically assessed for eligibility, however if you are in receipt of free school meals, your referee should confirm this to

If you receive a contextual offer and accept Durham as your firm choice you may also be eligible for a further grade reduction depending on the course you have applied for. If this applies to you then you will be able to see this on UCAS Track.

Please note: Applicants in receipt of an offer under this scheme must meet all Durham University and UCAS set deadlines to retain their offer. Programme changes after the point of offer will not be guaranteed and will follow the standard deadlines and processes for such changes.