Applying for a master's degree

A quick guide to the master's application process...

OnTrack ApplyTo apply for a master’s degree, you need to complete the Swansea University Online Application Form. Below are some general tips and guidance on applying for postgraduate study here at Swansea.

 

When do I apply?

Applications to master’s courses are accepted on a rolling basis. For most courses, there are no formal deadlines. As a general rule, we recommend submitting your application as soon as possible once you are happy with your choice of postgraduate programme.

There are clear advantages to applying early due to high demand for popular programmes. It is also worth noting that if you are intending to apply for external funding, you will usually need to have a firm offer of a place to study before you will be considered for an award. It is therefore important that you apply for your chosen scheme of study well in advance of the closing date for any funding applications. Information on funding opportunities can be found on our funding pages.

Exceptions to the rule

Some of our more popular courses will have early deadlines – candidates for the MSc in Abnormal and Clinical Psychology need to apply by the April deadline, for example. If in doubt about when to apply for your chosen postgraduate programme, please contact the relevant academic school for advice.

How do I apply?

As well as your formal online application, you will need to include:

  • A personal statement outlining your interest in the chosen programme of study
  • Two academic or work- related referees

The personal statement

Swansea requires that you use the personal statement to outline your interest in your chosen programme of study. This is your chance to persuade an admissions tutor that they should make you an offer of a place to study – keep your statement concise, specific and relevant, check it for correct spelling and grammar, and try to include the following:

  • Why you want to undertake this particular course, and your interest in the subject matter
  • How your undergraduate degree and any previous experience has prepared you for the course. Applicants seeking admission on the basis of non-graduate entry should demonstrate how their career to date has prepared them for postgraduate study
  • Your future plans and how this particular course will contribute to them

DO tailor your personal statement to the course and department and be explicit - you need to demonstrate your subject knowledge and skills, as well as a meaningful commitment to what you’ll be studying.

DON'T include details of extra-curricular activities unless they genuinely contribute to your understanding of and desire to study the course subject matter.

Referees

You need to submit two references along with your application form and personal statement. If you graduated within the last five years, these should be lecturers or tutors from a previous course.

If there's been a long gap since you last studied or you are coming from a non-academic background, admissions tutors will usually accept references from an employer or another appropriate individual who can comment on your academic ability. References from relatives or friends will not be accepted.

If you are using a previous employer as a reference, think carefully about who you ask. An employer's reference is only valuable if they can comment on your ability to undertake the course in reference to your experience.

How should references be submitted?

References should be submitted EITHER:

  • On the relevant referee forms, ‌OR
  • On headed paper, OR
  • Be emailed from an academic email account.

PG Reference Form