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Contextualised admissions

What is contextual admissions?

At Northeastern University London we don’t just use your grades to assess your application. We recognise that not everyone has the same educational journey and that some students have had to overcome challenges to achieve their grades.

The admissions team uses contextual information about an applicant to assess their prior academic achievement and potential based on their individual circumstances.

What information is used?

You may be eligible for a contextual offer if you meet one of the following criteria:

  • You live in an area of lower progression to higher education or high deprivation

If, at the point of application, you live in an area that has a low rate of progression to higher education according to POLAR4 data


If, at the point of application, you live in an area that has high levels of deprivation according to Index of Multiple Deprivation (IMD)


You attend a UK state school.

  • You attend an aspiring state school or college

If you apply from an aspiring state school or college. We consider a school or college to be aspiring if it has lower than average attainment or higher than average percentage of students on Free School Meals (FSM).

Please find the finalised list of schools for the 2023/24 cycle here

  • You have spent time in care

If you have spent time living with foster carers under local authority care, spent time in residential care (e.g. a children’s home) or been looked after at home under a supervision order, in kinship care with relatives or friends, either officially or informally without local authority support. 

  • You are estranged from your family

If you are under the age of 25 and no longer have the support of your parents/guardians, due to a permanent breakdown in your relationship which has led to ceased contact. This might mean your biological, step or adoptive parents or wider family members who have been responsible for supporting you in the past.

  • You receive (or have received) Free School Meals (FSM)

If you are receiving free school meals or have been in receipt of free school meals during your secondary education.

  • You are a forced migrant, refugee or asylum seeker

If you are classed as a refugee, asylum seeker or have been granted a temporary form of leave as the result of an asylum or human rights application.

  • You are a young adult carer

You are classed as a young adult carer if you are a carer under the age of 20 who looks after a family member,  who has a chronic illness, disability, mental health condition or addiction.

How is this information used?

Each application is considered holistically, and the information provided on the application form will be used to make one of the following decisions:

  • An offer that is one grade below standard entry requirements of AAB (or equivalent) for those that meet one of the above criteria
  • An offer that is two grades below standard entry requirements of AAB (or equivalent) for those that meet two or more of the above criteria

What do I need to do?

In most cases, we can assess your eligibility based on the information provided on your application form, but we may request additional information or evidence to verify your eligibility for contextual admissions.

If you have any questions, if there is any additional information you wish to provide or you would like to check your eligibility please get in touch