The 2018 UCAS tariff system can be confusing. The tariff is a system that assigns a different number value to each grade that you get, in each type of qualification that you have. You add these points together for a total value. For example, BBC at A Level equates to 112 UCAS points. Universities may then require a specific number of points for you to be eligible for a course. It is worth remembering that universities only count the highest level of achievement. If you’ve done an AS and A level in the same subject, they will only count the A level.
We have a calculator that you can use to work out how many UCAS points you have. Another great calculator for working out your UCAS tariff points and search for the best uni courses is one on the website universityfinder.org.uk
They can also specify how they want you to have earned these points, for example ‘including 48 points from Chemistry A Level’, or ‘can include BTECs or A Levels’. They could specify that you need to have achieved these points with a specific number of qualifications. For example, their course requirements might be ‘112 points from up to four qualifications’.
A new points system came into effect for courses starting in September 2017. They have done this so that they can include more qualifications in the points system. In previous years, each grade received a higher number of UCAS points. For example, an A* at A level used to get 140 points, whereas under the new Tariff it gets 56 points. Don’t worry, university course requirements have changed to reflect this. Proportionately, each grade is still worth the same amount.
- By Philippa Coster