United States of America
Undergraduate entry requirements for applicants from United States of America.
US Admissions Requirement Update for those applying for entry in 2021
Below you will see our test requirements for students applying with US standardised test scores. However, due to the impact of COVID-19 and disruption to testing in 2020 our admissions office will look at alternative evidence if you have been, or will be, unable to take these tests.
At the point you apply, please list any test scores you have been able to take, and any you plan to take over the course of senior year. If you will be unable to take these tests, please contact the relevant admissions office after you apply, quoting your UCAS application number, to explain your situation. Our admissions offices may be able to consider your transcript, or other evidence in lieu of standardised tests. If we are able to accept your transcript, we would be looking for college and honours level classes with strong grades in relevant subjects to the programme (major) to which you are applying.
Cancellation of SAT Subject Tests
On 19 January, the College Board announced that SAT Subject Tests will be discontinued in the United States with immediate effect. While this won’t affect all US applicants, we realise that you might be worried if you had planned to take SAT Subject Tests to meet our entry requirements.
If you already have a conditional offer based on SAT Subject Tests, then the Admissions Office will contact you directly to advise on acceptable alternative evidence.
If you are still waiting for your application to be assessed, then no further action is required by you at this point. The Admissions Office will consider the other qualifications listed in your application and contact you if further information is required.
To qualify for entry, you must meet general entry requirements, specific requirements for your chosen degree programme/major (where applicable) and meet English language requirements.
The University of Edinburgh accepts a wide range of qualifications for entry - most commonly for US students this will be a combination of US standardised test scores. If you are taking another curriculum such as the International Baccalaureate or French Baccalaureate, please see:
Test score requirements
All subjects require three standardised test scores, and these can be a variety of different combinations provided they are in different subjects.
At the point you apply, you do not need to have achieved all of these requirements, but you should be aiming to complete the requirements in your senior year. Please list on your UCAS application form all of the tests you have taken and intend to take.
Achieving the following grades will not guarantee you a place at Edinburgh, but will make you a competitive applicant. Please note, our Admissions Office will consider the other aspects of your application, such as the personal statement.
Examples of our minimum entry requirements in the standardised tests are:
- ACT score of 27 plus two AP scores at 4+ or two SAT subject tests at 650+
- SAT score of 1290+ (650+ in Evidence based reading and Writing and 620+ in Math) plus two AP scores at 4+ or two SAT subject tests at 650+
- 3 AP scores at 4+
- 3 SAT Subject Test scores of 650+
- A combination of the AP and SAT, such as 1 AP score at 4+ and 2 SAT Subject Tests at 650+
Applicants should submit all of their test scores, and our Admission Offices will consider the highest scores submitted for each. Please note, the University of Edinburgh does not Superscore the ACT but will consider a Superscore for the new and old SAT. The optional essay sections are not required.
A combination of AP and SAT Subject tests are acceptable, provided they are in different subjects. For example, AP French and SAT Physics are acceptable as two scores, but AP French and SAT French are only considered once.
Please note AP scores are used for admissions purposes only, and no advanced credit is awarded as there is no core curriculum in Scotland. AP Research is not accepted as meeting one of the three required.
Cambridge Advanced International Certificate of Education
The Cambridge Advanced International Certificate of Education (AICE) Diploma is accepted for entry. The Diploma must include three Cambridge International A Levels achieved with points equivalent to the A Level grade requirements for the programme including required subjects.
Point equivalencies are:
Subject specific requirements
Many of our degree programmes require that you have some experience of the subject at high school. This means that one or more of your three standardised test scores must include specific subject requirements, such as an AP score or SAT subject test in a certain subject relevant to the degree you are applying to.
Please check the following information and web pages for your subject specific requirements. If your subject is not listed e.g. International Relations, this means there are no specific subject test requirements.
Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences
Science & Engineering
Medicine & Vet Medicine
1. 5-year BVM&S (D100)
Normally 3 APs all at 4 or above in Chemistry, Biology and either Maths/Physics would be required. However, we are also happy to consider a combination of APs and SAT IIs (700+) provided that they are in different subjects. Prospective applicants are encouraged to get in contact with the Veterinary Medicine Admissions team prior to application for advice.
If Physics has not been studied as part of the AP/SATs, candidates must also provide evidence of a qualification at a minimum of SQA Standard Grade 2 or GCSE Grade B or equivalent in this subject.
All applicants to Veterinary Medicine will be expected to have relevant practical experience of handling animals.
Candidates with two years of a pre-vet will be considered for the 5-year BVM&S programme. We would expect high grades in all science subjects, specifically Chemistry, Biology and either Maths/Physics. An overall GPA of 3.4 (4 point scale) is expected.
2. Graduate entry programme (GEP) BVM&S (D102)
Pass in a 4-year undergraduate degree with a science major and a GPA of 3.4 or better. Candidates who want to be considered for the GEP must achieve high grades in the following subjects:
- Organic and Inorganic Chemistry
In addition, gaining high grades in the following subjects would strengthen an application for the GEP:
- Cell Biology
Graduate Record Examination - VMCAS candidates only
Scores from the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test are required. GRE scores should be submitted to the School directly using 0917 (institution code) and 0617 (department code).
For Medicine (MBChB)
1. Entry direct from high school
Medicine has higher minimum entry requirements:
- At least 3 APs at 5 or 3 SAT Subject Tests at 700+
- These must include Chemistry and two of Biology, Math/Calculus or Physics (Math or Calculus would only count as meeting one)
- Scores can be a combination of APs and SAT subject tests
We may also consider routes other than standardised tests, based on school curriculum - prospective applicants should contact the Medical Admissions Office prior to application for advice on this.
Applicants for Medicine must also take the UCAT.
2. Graduate Entry after completing an undergraduate/bachelor’s degree
Pass in a 4-year undergraduate degree preferably with a science major in Biology; Chemistry; Mathematics or Physics and a GPA of 3.4 or better. If you have not undertaken a science major you will also require either SAT II Chemistry at 650+ or AP Chemistry at grade 4.
Subject specific requirements for Biomedical Sciences include both Biology and Chemistry. This can either be an AP Exam at 4+ or 5 or SAT Subject Test at 650+.
Cancelled testing due to Covid-19 - Medical Sciences and Biomedical Sciences
Due to the impact of Covid-19 and the associated disruption to testing, if you have been, or will be, unable to take these tests as set out in your offer conditions, our admissions office may consider alternative academic evidence. It is very important that you contact us as soon as you become aware of any test cancellations or any other barriers that will not allow you to take your scheduled tests (for example, Covid-19 travel restrictions imposed in your local area mean you cannot travel to a test centre). When contacting us to inform us of these changes in circumstances please provide the following documents for consideration:
- a copy of your US High School transcript to date including your Junior and Senior year classes, any mid-term/semester report cards,
- a copy of your school’s profile and curriculum for required subjects
At this stage in the process we can review ‘unofficial’ and ‘online’ transcripts and links to your school’s profile online if they are not available in document format. This evidence will then be considered by a member of our Admissions Team before a final admissions decision is confirmed. To inform us about your situation and provide your High School documents, please email us quoting your full name, your UCAS ID number and the degree programme(s) you have applied to.
Sending your scores
We do not require a copy of your high school transcript to be sent (unless requested) but once you have applied you should send us your official score reports:
College Board/SAT/AP scores: 0917
Further information on sending your scores can be found on the ACT, SAT and AP websites.
Further support on admissions is available from College Admissions Teams and Edinburgh Global.
College Admissions Contacts
Staff in the Admissions Offices will be able to provide further guidance on Admissions.
Completed study at another institution and want to apply to Edinburgh to complete your degree?
Watch our presentation on the admissions process for US students.
Chat to us
Talk to a member of staff online and view a presentation about study in Edinburgh.
Do I need a visa?
Check your immigration requirements.
Support in your country
View a list of our overseas visits to the USA where you can speak to us about applying.
There are more than 2000 students from USA currently studying at the University of Edinburgh.
You can meet some of these students on our Student Stories Blog:
The Edinburgh Global Regional Managers for USA are Rachael Parsons, Aly Stewart, Hillary Cementina and Mikaela Spencer
Rachael, Aly, Hillary and Mikaela will help you with admissions advice and support.
You can email them at firstname.lastname@example.org
Understanding your offer
For applicants with US qualifications who have received a conditional offer of study.