In this article we going to share with you the difference between September and January intake in UK. The UK is one of the most popular study-abroad destinations among international students. There are many benefits of studying in the UK, but the most prominent benefit is the quality of education provided by UK universities. All the universities welcome new students in two kinds of intakes. 

These are the January intake (Winter) and the September intake(Fall). Many students are always confused about whether they choose the winter or fall intake. The quality of education for both intakes stays the same, the only difference is in the range of courses offered. Both intakes have their pros and cons and you should analyse these details and then decide what is the best for you.

In this blog, we will discuss everything regarding the difference between September and January intake in UK. 

Types of Intakes in the UK

There are two major types of intakes in the UK: Winter and Fall. However, some universities also offer programs that have an additional May intake. In the UK all the colleges start in September and the academic year ends in July. 

The deadline for applying to the January intake is from June to September. This means you will have enough time to prepare for your application and arrange for all the other necessities like accommodation. 

The deadline for applying to the September intake is February to May. To understand the difference between September and January intake in UK, let’s analyse the pros and cons. 

Pros and Cons of September Intake


  • September intake is the primary intake in UK universities. If you go for this intake then you will have a range of courses to choose from. You will also be offered several other flagship programs that are open only in the September intake. 
  • Since the majority of international students come in this intake, the universities provide a welcoming atmosphere and there are many fresher parties. You will also see a lot of student groups, especially for the support of international students. 
  • The most underrated benefit of the September intake is scholarships. Most scholarships are open for application for September intake students. You will get a chance to apply to a lot of scholarships and you may get some kind of financial aid. The availability of scholarships is also a major difference between September and January intake in UK. 
  • Many companies offer internships in this period as new students are starting their careers 


  • The disadvantage of going to the September intake is the competition. Since a lot of students apply in this intake, the number of applications received for visa and university are very high and this makes getting accepted into the university very tough. 
  • You have to apply to the universities and gather all the documents from February to May. This is tough because this is the exam time of your ongoing course in India. You will have to manage your studies and applications together which may cause your marks to go down or you may not get enough time to research the courses. You should consider this point when looking for differences between September and January intake in UK.

Pros and Cons of January Intake in the UK


  • The deadline for admission to January intakes is June to September. This gives you enough time to apply and research at all the universities. Since your exams will be completed and you will also have a clear idea of the scores you are going to have, you can easily shortlist the universities best for you. 
  • The number of students applying in the January intake decreases dramatically. This means that the competition will be a lot lower compared to the September intake. This is the major difference between September and January intake in UK. 


  • The disadvantage of the January intake is that it is a secondary intake in the UK and thus you will get a lot fewer courses to choose from. The quality of education remains the same but it is still recommended to choose the September intake if you want more courses to choose from.
  • If you were planning to go to the UK with financial aid and if it is not possible for you to go without financial aid then do not choose the January intake. Most scholarship applications are closed till January intake students apply to them. 

Which Intake is the Best for You?

In the above section, we discussed the pros and cons of both september as well as January intake. This must have given you a clear understanding of the difference between September and January intake in UK.

Now, you should identify which intake is the best for you. This can be done by keeping in mind the above-discussed pros and cons and some additional points given below:

  • The first thing you need to do is to go to the website of your preferred university and look for the intake allowed in your course. Don’t look for a general answer whether the university is accepting September intake or January intake. Many universities offer the majority of courses that are open in both intakes but some courses may open in just one intake. So, check the official website and then move ahead.
  • Check your academic score. Your academic scores also define whether you are good for a september intake or a January intake. If you have good scores and are confident that some of the universities will surely accept you then go for the September intake, as it is the preferred intake. If you have a low academic score then go for a January intake as competition is low. 
  • Entrance tests are prominently by which UK universities offer admission to engineering and MBA courses. If your course requires an entrance test score then analyze your score and try to find out the minimum required score for studying in the course of your choice. If you have a hh score, apply in the September intake, if not then go for the January intake and check the acceptance rate of the university you are applying to. If your preferred university has a less acceptance score then you can give a second thought to whether apply for September intake or not. This is an important point which will let you choose the intake by analyzing the difference between September and January intake in UK. 
  • The last thing that you need to check is the time you have. If you are already well prepared for the application and if you are confident that you can handle your application and ongoing exams together, then go for a September intake. If you have started late and now you don’t have much time left for application then don’t rush. Take your time and prepare your applications precisely and then apply for the January intake. 

Documents Required to Study in the UK

The documents required for studying in the UK are an important aspect that you should know if you are going to apply for the UK. Even if you have enough time to apply for the January intake, you should be clear regarding what documents you should have. In the below list, we have also included the important points which you should consider while generating these documents. 

These tips will help you to generate the documents after knowing the difference between September and January intake in UK. The list of the documents that you should have is as below:

  • Good academic record: You should have an undergraduate degree if you are applying for a master’s program and a high school certificate if you are applying for a bachelor’s. The minimum score is different for all courses but you should have at least 70%.
  • A passport which has been issued in the last 10 years. 
  • Valid test scores for English tests. You can give any of the tests that are accepted by your preferred university.
  • You also need test scores for the GMAT or GRE. These are the major entrance exams accepted by universities. 
  • A Letter of Recommendation(LOR) is an important document that can increase the chances of your admission. This can be from one of your professors or employers. 
  • The Statement of Purpose(SOP) is one of the most important documents which can provide you admission even if you have low marks. Take time to write your SOP. Many students nowadays copy the SOP from readymade templates and some students also use AI software to write their SOP. This should be avoided in all cases. the university will immediately know if you have copied or written your SOP from AI. Just write your own story, and you can use AI software like Grammarly for checking grammar mistakes.  

Conclusion For Difference Between September and January Intake in UK

The two major kinds of intakes in the UK, namely the winter and the fall intake can be confusing for many students. Most international students are concerned if their studies will be affected depending on the intake they choose. However, the quality of the study remains the same and does not depend on the intake you choose.

Your experience may differ based on the intake. The September intake is more welcoming and you will have a good atmosphere to start your studies and a variety of courses as well. We hope this blog has equipped you with all the information regarding the difference between September and January intake in UK. For more related topics and future updates stay tuned with Course Mentor.

Frequently Asked Question (Difference Between September and January Intake in UK)

What are the disadvantages of January intake in the UK?

If you want to live off campus, it might be harder to find roommates because most students start in September. Check to see if the university you’re applying to has the classes you want to take, as there may be fewer choices in January.

What is the best time to apply for January intake in UK?

Most of the time, the sooner the better. The application time for UCAS starts in September for January. So students have sufficient to prepare.

What are the benefits of September intake in the UK?

In September, you can get into some of the best universities in the UK. There are many benefits, such as more courses and programs, chances to get financial help, and chances to take part in events outside of courses.