How to land your dream degree at SAE

21 May 2021

We understand that not everyone knows what they want to do when they leave school, with lots of people gaining experience in paid employment before deciding that they want to pursue higher education. Here at SAE UK we are keen to help people from all walks of life accelerate their creative careers, which is why it couldn’t be easier to apply as a mature applicant via direct application. 

Our student body is a diverse group, reflective of the creative industries at large. We have lots of late-stage career changers who embark on a degree at the same time as more typical school leavers. Our classrooms are set up so that no matter how old you are or how much prior experience you might have in the industry, you can get the most out of your experience with a practical, hands-on approach from day one. 

If you are a mature student (21+) who is not currently attending school or college it’s not too late to apply directly via our website - 

What are we looking for from direct applications? 

All applications are reviewed by our friendly Admissions Team. You will have the opportunity to demonstrate your suitability for the course through:

  1. Your personal statement and/or portfolio 
  2. Your qualifications or predicted grades (these are supplied by your school or college)
  3. Your academic or personal references, where applicable 
  4. Your English language skills (if English is not your first language) 

What if you don’t meet our entry requirements? 

The entry requirement at SAE is 72 UCAS tariff points for our accelerated undergraduate courses, primarily from Level 3 equivalent qualifications such as A levels, a BTEC Extended Diploma or a Foundation Diploma. Check your qualifications using the UCAS Tariff Calculator. If you are holding points below 72, get in touch with our admissions team who will be able to let you know if you could apply with a supplementary portfolio: 

What do we look for from a portfolio? 

If you choose to submit a portfolio in support of your application it is important that you show that you have a strong motivation to excel in your area of study; a passion for your specialism; intellectual curiosity and the ability to think differently; the ability to challenge conventional ideas and an adaptable approach suited your studies and future career in the creative industries. 

A portfolio can come in many formats and should show us your own personal style, skills and ideas. Depending on which course you’re hoping to study at SAE, it may include: sound compositions, film work, storyboards, illustrations, 3D designs, business plans or creative writing. 

We’ve put together this handy video that explains how to build a portfolio: 

How do you write a personal statement?  

Your personal statement is your chance to show how your personality, experience and attitude will make you a great fit on your chosen course. It should demonstrate any experience you have working with relevant technology (hardware or software); sum up your experience of working with others; reflect your willingness to learn; detail any relevant work experience; give us a sense of who you are as a person. 

To help you write your personal statement, you can download and complete our handy form. Fill in the questions and at the end you will have a statement ready to submit as part of your application. 

How do you apply direct? 

Applying directly is easy. Simply:

  1. Visit our online application page to start your creative media journey.
  2. Be sure to read and accept the Terms and Conditions along with the Fees Policy available at

In order to speed up your application, please ensure that you submit all relevant documentation.

If you have demonstrated your suitability for the course, we’ll make you an Offer of Study. Once you have accepted your place, we’ll send you a welcome email with useful information on how to prepare for your educational journey at SAE.

Follow these steps and you’ll be one step closer to landing an offer to study on your dream degree at SAE!