UK Intakes 2024: A Comprehensive Guide to September, January, and May Intakes

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UK Intakes – Are you thinking about studying in the United Kingdom? It’s well-known for its great universities and courses, making it a top choice for students from all over the world. The UK has a strong history of great education, offering lots of different study options, scholarships, and chances to experience new cultures. 

UK Intakes 2024

Known for leading the way in research, having excellent teachers, and a network of successful former students all over the world, studying in the UK means you’ll get a top-notch education and great job opportunities in Europe and beyond.

The mix of different cultures in the UK helps you grow personally and understand the world better, making it a perfect place if you’re looking to learn a lot and meet people from different places. The UK has three main times when you can start studying—September, January, and May—so you can pick what fits best for your plans. Let’s look at the UK Intakes.

What is UCAS?

UCAS stands for Universities and Colleges Admissions Service. It’s the online system you use if you want to apply to college in the UK. It lets you send off one application to several universities at once. Could you make sure to look up the application deadlines for each course on UCAS’s website?

September/Fall Intake in the UK

One of the popular UK Intakes is the September or Fall intake, from September to December, and is the busiest time for UK universities. Applications start coming in as early as December of the previous year and go on until July. Since this is the main period for starting university, schools open up about 90% of their courses to new students. 

This means you have lots of options to choose from whether you want to start an undergraduate or a graduate program. This intake is perfect if you’re ready to jump into your studies in the UK. 

Merits of the September Intake in the UK

  1. Wide Course Options: You can choose from a wide range of undergraduate and postgraduate courses from all major disciplines.
  2. Scholarship Opportunities: During this intake, you have the availability of the largest number of scholarships and financial aid options, providing you a good financial support.
  3. Career Growth: Most of the internship and career opportunities align with the traditional hiring seasons in many industries, hence increasing your job prospects upon graduation.
  4. Global Alignment: This intake goes hand in hand with the academic schedules of most countries, hence makes the transition easy for international students.

Demerits of the September Intake in the UK

  1. High Competition: Since this is the most popular intake, there’s a high number of applicants, making admission processes highly competitive.
  2. Accommodation Crunch: Since there is a huge number of incoming students, it creates a high demand for housing, making finding suitable accommodation challenging.
  3. Rushed Preparation for International Students: If you come from a different academic calendar where you don’t have much gap from the end of your previous course, you may find the timing challenging, with less time to settle before the academic year starts.

Famous Universities and Key Dates for the Fall Intake

University Name Location Tuition (INR/year) 


University of Manchester Study Center Oxford 20,26,000
King’s College London London 29,34,000
University of Bristol Bristol 26,91,000
University of Leeds Leeds 25,85,000
University of Edinburgh Edinburgh 30,00,000


Event Date
Applications Open December
Application Deadline July
Courses Begin September

Find more details about the september intake in the UK here

January/Winter Intake: A Strategic Second Chance

The January or Winter intake goes on from January to April and is a secondary intake for the universities in UK. This intake offers about 30% of courses and opens its applications from September to November. 

It’s an excellent opportunity for students who missed the primary fall intake deadline, as it provides additional time to work of the applications and have relatively less competition for acceptance.

Merits of the January Intake in the UK

  1. Second Chance: If you missed the Fall intake, this intake offers you another opportunity to apply without waiting for a whole year.
  2. Extra Prep Time: You can have more time to gather and submit application materials, ensuring a well-prepared entry.
  3. Lesser Competition: Since fewer students apply during this intake, the chances of your application being accepted are higher than in the Fall intake.

Demerits of the January/winter Intake in the UK

  1. Limited Course Options: Only about 30% of courses are available for you to apply during this intake in the UK, offering fewer choices, especially in niche fields.
  2. Disruption of Academic Year: Starting mid-academic year can be less ideal for if you prefer a traditional September start, as you will be losing around 4-5 months of the previous year if your previous couse ended in the previous mid-year
  3. Shorter On-Campus Experience: You may experience a short on-campus time if their courses end earlier in the year.

Leading Universities for January/Winter Intake in the UK

University Name Location Tuition (INR/year) 


Queen Mary University London 23,70,000
Coventry University Coventry 19,50,000
Brunel University London 19,50,000
University of Essex Colchester, Southend, Lougheed 20,78,000
Kingston University London 15,47,000


Event Date
Applications Begin September
Application Deadline November
Courses Begin January

Find more details about the January intake in the UK here

May/Spring Intake in the UK

Another popular UK intakes is May/Spring Intake in UK. Extending from May to August, the May or Spring intake is the least preferred among the three but offers unique benefits. This intake offers approximately 10% of the actual number of  courses.  its application period ranges from October to November.

 It’s advantageous to apply during this intake due to its timing, since it coincides with the spring break, which means less competition and higher acceptance chances.

Merits of the May Intake in the UK

  1. Rapid Start: This intake allows you to begin your studies immediately after application, which is ideal if you are ready to start without delay.
  2. Higher Acceptance Rates: Fewer applicants result in higher chances of acceptance, which is beneficial for those looking for a sure entry.
  3. Enjoy Summer Break: You can enjoy a summer break shortly after starting your studies, offering a refreshing break early in your academic journey.

Demerits of the May Intake in the UK

  1. Limited Course Selection: In this intake about 10% of courses offered hence your options for courses are significantly reduced during this intake
  2. Less Campus Activity: You’ll find fewer students and activities during this term, which means you’ll experience a quieter campus life. this might not appeal to you if you seek a bustling university experience.

Popular Universities and Critical Timelines for the Spring Intake

University Name Location Tuition (INR/year) 


University of Hertfordshire Hertfordshire 13,70,000
University of Glasgow Glasgow 1745000
Coventry University Coventry 16,43,000
Robert Gordon University Scotland 16,65,000
Edinburgh Napier University Merchiston, Craiglockhart and Sighthill 17,16,000


Event Date
Application Process Opens October
Application Deadline November
Classes Commence May

Find more details about the May/spring intake in the UK here

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q1: Can I apply for multiple intakes in the UK in the same academic year?
A1: Yes, you can apply for the September, January, and May intakes within the same academic year, depending on your readiness and the courses available. This flexibility allows you to choose the best time to start your studies based on your personal circumstances.

Q2: Are there differences in tuition fees among the September, January, and May intakes?
A2: Generally, tuition fees remain consistent across different intakes for the same program at a university. However, it’s always a good idea to check with the specific university for any variations or scholarship opportunities that might be available during different intakes.

Q3: Is it easier to secure accommodation for one intake over the other UK intakes?
A3: Finding accommodation can be more challenging in September due to the higher number of students starting their courses. The January and May intakes might offer more accommodation options due to fewer students commencing their studies.

Q4: How does the choice of different intakes in the UK affect internship and job opportunities post-graduation?
A4: Starting in September might align better with traditional recruitment cycles for internships and graduate jobs, which typically peak around summer. However, graduates from the January and May intakes can also find ample opportunities, especially with companies that have rolling recruitment policies throughout the year.

Q5: What should I do if I miss the UCAS deadline for the September intake?
A5: If you miss the UCAS deadline for the September intake, consider applying for the next available intake—either January or May. Many universities also offer direct application options that might have deadlines different from those set by UCAS, providing additional opportunities to enrol.

Each intake has its distinct advantages and challenges, so consider your options carefully and plan ahead to maximise your educational experience in the UK. If you have more questions or need further advice, feel free to reach out to Securemyscholarship where our expert counsellors will guide you through the entire process of studying abroad from choosing the right course/university to getting your admission offer letter and visa.


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Vipin Rana

Vipin Rana

My role involves supporting student recruitment for USA globally, establishing solid relationships with channel partners, and Student counselling. The most exciting part of my role is, having the opportunity to assist the students in fulfilling their educational and career goals. Working with SMS makes me proud as I work with a fantastic set of people across the globe.

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