Returning to learning?
Anyone with the ability and
enthusiasm, regardless of their age or background, can enjoy the
benefits of a university education. Here at York St John we
warmly welcome applications from mature students and many of our
staff, both academic and support, are experts in supporting adult
learners through their years with us.
Perhaps you have reached a significant
birthday, are looking to change jobs or start a new career, have
experience relevant to a degree you’d like to study or now have the
time to devote to learning more about a subject you have always
been interested in? This is the year you can realise that ambition
and continue with your lifelong learning in an academic
Becoming a mature student
For many people, the idea of entering
or returning to education later in life may be daunting. But you
need not worry that you will be in the minority. Here at York St
John, nearly half of our students have not come to us straight from
school – they are people who have decided the time is right for
them to get back into learning.
If you come to study with us, you are
almost certain to find other mature students on the course with
you. At York St John we welcome mature students and value their
experience and skills. Do not be put off because it is a long time
since you have done any study as we will provide support to help
you brush up your study skills.
We are proud of the reputation we have
for supporting people through their degrees, whatever their age.
Because we are relatively small you’ll be more than just a number
on a list to us; we get to know all our students by name. We’ll
help you feel at home from the moment you start your course here
and will give you all the help and assistance you need to achieve
what you want.
Who to talk to
Undertaking a degree course can be a
daunting prospect and many adult learners often feel that
they just aren’t ‘clever enough’ to go to university. By
talking to one of our Admissions staff you will be able to find out
whether or not you have the relevant qualifications or experience
before you make a formal application.
We would also recommend that you come
along to one of our open days where you can speak to academic staff
and meet other mature students.
Before you make a final decision, you
may also want to talk to a member of one of our specialist teams if
you have specific questions about, for example, financial matters,
disability issues, childcare queries or career planning.
Entry requirements for mature
The main quality every student needs
is enthusiasm for their subject and determination to succeed. As a
mature student your ‘life experience’ is likely to play a large
part in your success as a student. You may not be aware of it but
you probably already have many of the skills necessary to be a
successful student – time management, meeting deadlines, and
social skills – all important facets for reaching your goal.
But to get to the starting point you
may need some form of qualification, that might be:
- an approved Access Diploma
- A2 Level qualifications
- vocational qualifications, such as
BTEC National Diploma or Certificate or NVQs at Level 3
- professional qualifications or Open
We may be able to offer you an
alternative route, please contact us for more information.
If you have these or similar
qualifications please call our Information Hotline on 01904 876598
E: email@example.com and
one of our team will talk through with you whether or not your
qualification meets the entry requirements for your chosen
Access diplomas help adult learners
prepare and qualify for entry to Higher Education. The diplomas are
aimed at students who do not have standard entry qualifications or
who feel that their qualifications are a little rusty.
All such diplomas have a strong study
skills/confidence building component. Access diplomas cover a range
of subjects and are often discipline related or related to
progression to particular professions. Some examples that match our
degree courses are:
- Art & Design
- Social Sciences
However, there are also programmes of
a more general nature which are designed to prepare students for
entry into Higher Education in a variety of ways. If you are unsure
as to whether we would accept the diploma you are thinking of
undertaking, please contact us.
Many colleges offer such courses. To
find the one nearest to you that offers the most appropriate route
look at the Access website at www.ucas.ac.uk/access
Accreditation of Prior Experiential
An alternative route into your chosen
course may be to have your work experience recognised through
accreditation of your learning at your place of employment.
APEL recognises the value of learning
which takes place outside formal education institutions. It helps
adult learners to identify the skills and knowledge acquired
informally and to reflect upon their learning processes, enabling
them to make the transition from informal to formal learning.
It is also an important vehicle for
enabling adults who possess few, if any, qualifications to return
to learn in adult, further and higher education and subsequent
re-entry into the labour market.
Again, our admissions staff will be
able to give you more information on APEL.
Contact them on 01904 876598 or E:
You will have access to all the
student support services we offer.
Childcare may be of particular
importance to you. There is a private on-site nursery,
Kaleidoscope. Please note that there is usually a waiting list and
bookings should be made as early as possible. Kaleidoscope can be
contacted on 01904 654792.
The government also offer a
means-tested grant for childcare that can be used to pay for your
choice of local registered childcare. For more information on this
grant please visit www.yorksj.ac.uk/fundingbodies