Part-time and mature students

Kingston's part-time degrees are mainly for adults over 21, although we welcome enquiries from younger people.

We use the phrase 'mature student' to refer to the over-21 category, and there is no upper age limit.

Mature students can usually study on either a full-time or part-time course. The part-time route offers students the flexibility of fitting in their studies around domestic, professional or other commitments. All of the subjects that are offered to traditional full-time students are available to mature students.

Ability to undertake the course

As Britain has had the lowest rate of entry to higher education of any advanced Western nation, it is likely that there are many people in the UK who are capable of taking a degree, but who have not done so for various reasons.

One of these reasons is that many people are daunted by the idea of degree-level study and think that you need to be exceptionally intelligent to study at university. However, we believe that confidence, motivation and common sense are equally important as academic ability in getting the most from your studies.

The Faculty has a long history of teaching mature students and, in our experience, they do remarkably well. The scheme is designed so that you can take from it what you need at the pace that suits you..

Qualifications and skills required


If you are under 21 then you need formal qualifications.

If you are over 21 then we can consider skills gained from work or life experiences as an alternative to formal qualifications. However, we do look for some evidence of suitability for study at degree level.

We may ask you to do some written work in order to help us assess your suitability. If we feel that you would benefit from some form of preparation before embarking on a degree we will recommend an appropriate course to you. But motivation and enthusiasm can be as important as formal qualifications, and we will be happy to look at your application, whatever your academic background.


We are aware that people returning to education may be unsure what will be expected of them. Our students have usually developed skills which can be adapted to degree level study, although often this is not initially apparent to them.

Benefits of the qualification

The modular scheme is broad, covering a wide spectrum from Economics to Literature and History. It therefore lends itself to a number of purposes. You may choose to combine together fields of study and individual modules to help consolidate your present career or to bring you up to date in a field relating to your work. Alternatively your study programme may help you change direction, possibly after a career break.

You may also wish to use the course to develop your general education, either for your own personal satisfaction, or to improve your qualifications. The main point about the scheme is that it is varied and flexible enough to give you the chance of using it to pursue your own individual goals.

Transfer from part-time to full-time study

Many of our students find that, having experienced degree-level study part-time, they then wish to transfer to the full-time degree. Students can apply for transfer to the full-time route on completion of a level. All students wishing to transfer are interviewed; however transfer to a full-time place cannot be guaranteed.

Photograph of mature students in a lecture