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Talented Athlete Entry Scheme

Did you know that Ulster University offers reduced grade requirements to talented athletes entering full-time undergraduate study?

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The Talented Athlete Entry Scheme is designed to assist talented young sports performers in gaining access to a quality education at Ulster University whilst attaining success at the highest levels within their chosen sport.

The Scheme recognises the sacrifice in time, effort and crucially – in examination performance – which may result from taking part in sport at the highest level. Under the Talented Athlete Entry Scheme, Ulster University allows a reduction in the grades required for entry to full-time undergraduate courses.

For the academic year 2019-20, successful applicants to the Talented Athlete Entry Scheme will be offered a two grade reduction in entrance requirements or the equivalent in other accepted entrance qualifications.

Are you eligible to apply?

To be considered eligible to make an application to the Talented Athlete Entry Scheme you must:

  • Participate in a sport recognised by Student Sport Ireland (SSI) and / or British Universities & Colleges Sport (BUCS) through which opportunities exist for students to compete at Intervarsity level for Ulster University.  A list detailing these sports is provided.
  • Have been selected within the last 18 months to compete as a minimum at age group international, age group interprovincial or age group county level or above in line with the competitive structure of your chosen sport.
  • Be entering Ulster University to study on a full-time undergraduate course from school leaver level.
  • Be prepared to make Ulster University your ‘Firm’ course choice when making your application through the UCAS system.
  • Agree to represent Ulster University in your chosen sport throughout your undergraduate studies, subject to fitness and selection.

What does the Scheme offer?

Successful applicants to the Scheme can benefit from:

  • A two grade reduction in course entry requirements (or grade range CCC; whichever is lower) or the equivalent in other accepted entrance qualifications. Please note that CCC is the lowest course offer that can be made through the Scheme.
  • A Talent Squad Sport Scholarship offering access to performance sport support services valued at over £500 including musculo-skeletal screening, physiotherapy, strength & conditioning programmes, testing & supervision, performance skills workshops, merchandise and free membership of one Ulster University Sports Union Club.
  • Mentor support.
  • The opportunity to apply to the Ulster University Approved Absence and Independent Study Programme.

How do you submit an application?

It’s simple. Just complete and submit the online form via the weblink http://uususport.org/taes-2019/ before the closing date of 15 January 2019. This closing date aligns with the UCAS deadline for on-time applications.  Please ensure that it is completed as fully and clearly as possible.

Please note:

  • Confirmation of information, advice and/or opinion may be sought from governing bodies of sport and may be used as part of the assessment process.  Applicants should ensure they provide details for an appropriate individual where requested in the Application Form.
  • The Assessment Panel will not consider applications received after the closing date of 15 January 2019.  A complaint regarding the decision making process  may be submitted to the Head of Sports Services who may refer it to a Complaints  Panel, should s/he decide there is a substantive case for a reconsideration of an application beyond the closing date.
  • It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that their online Application Form is submitted by 11.59pm on the closing date of 15 January 2019.
  • Once their form is submitted, each applicant will receive an email confirmation that it has been received.  This will go to the email address that the application was sent from and should reflect the email address provided on the application, so please ensure it is correct.

What happens next?

Applications will be assessed in line with established criteria.  This process takes a number of weeks, followed by a moderation process to ensure fairness and consistency of approach.

The number of successful applicants entering Ulster University through the Scheme from team sports will be capped at a level equal to the official size of an Intervarsity squad for that particular sport as established by the Colleges and Universities Sports Association of Ireland / British University and Colleges Sport.  A list of these team sport caps is provided.  Individual sports will not be capped.  As in previous years in order to be successful applicants must achieve an assessment score above an established threshold.   If within any team sport, the process of application form assessment cannot satisfactorily distinguish the successful applicants in line with the identified cap, a process of interviews may be used.  If you are applying for the Talented Athlete Entry Scheme as a team sport player, please be prepared to be interviewed as part of the selection process.  We will let you know if we need to hold interviews and the date/venue as soon as possible.

Applicants will be notified in writing whether or not their application has been successful.  Unsuccessful candidates will have the opportunity to make a formal complaint in writing, if they feel they have evidence that the application and selection process was not properly followed, in accordance with the complaints procedures that will be made available to them at the time of this notification.

Successful applicants to the Talented Athlete Entry Scheme must;

  • Satisfy the general and specific conditions for offer, including completing any additional selection methods used on their chosen programme (see online prospectus for details) and obtain an offer of a place on a full-time undergraduate course at Ulster University.   Please note that applicants to BSc Hons Dietetics, BSc Hons Occupational Therapy, BSc Hons Physiotherapy, BSc Hons Diagnostic Radiography and Imaging, BSc Hons Radiotherapy and Oncology, BSc Hons Speech & Language Therapy must, in addition to applying through UCAS in the normal way, register for HPAT–Ulster and take the test on Saturday 26 January 2019.  More information on the HPAT can be found at http://www.hpat-ulster.acer.edu.au  .  Having a successful application to the Talented Athlete Entry Scheme will have no bearing on this particular condition for offer to study one of these HPAT courses.
  • Be prepared to choose Ulster University as your ‘Firm’ course choice via the UCAS system..  Please be aware, the offer of a place on Ulster University’s Talented Athlete Entry Scheme will be forfeited by any applicant who does not choose Ulster University as their ‘Firm’ choice when the time comes to do so in the UCAS admission process.
  • Attend the TAES Information Evening on Wednesday 3 April 2019 to receive further information about the Scheme.
  • Sign and return your Athlete Agreement by 17 April 2019. Please note this gives you two full weeks to commit to the terms and conditions of the Scheme and to notify the University accordingly.  Thereafter, the offer is withdrawn and may be made to a candidate on any waiting list.
  • Utilise the offer in the year it is made, as it cannot be deferred.  Applicants are welcome to reapply the following year but success in the following year is not guaranteed based on a previously successful application. Each year the pool of applicants compete for a place on the Talented Athlete Entry Scheme anew.

What is expected of a Talented Athlete at Ulster University

  • You must have exemplary class attendance and maintain satisfactory academic and sporting progress to retain access to the allocated support services.
  • You must play a full part in sport and represent the University in Intervarsity competitions and championships, compatible with your training, competition and academic programmes.
  • You must display the highest standards of sporting commitment, attitude and conduct at all times.

Those failing to adhere to the conditions of the Scheme will have access to support services withdrawn.

If you have any questions or require any further information in relation to the Talented Athlete Entry Scheme, please contact the Scheme Administrator by email on schemeadministrator@ulster.ac.uk.


Hours of training, intense regimes and high level competition programmes can sometimes mean a sacrifice in examination performance.

The Scheme is designed to assist talented young athletes gain access to a quality education whilst attaining success at the highest levels within their chosen sport by reducing the entry grades required for full-time undergraduate courses.

A package of support services is also offered for students on entry to Ulster University to help develop their performance level. This includes access to screening, strength and conditioning, performance skills workshops, physiotherapy and merchandise.

Eligible Sports

List of sports recognised by Student Sport Ireland (SSI) and / or British Universities & Colleges Sport (BUCS) that offer Intervarsity competitive opportunities to students at Ulster University.

Aikido

American Football

Angling

Archery

Athletics & Cross Country

Badminton

Basketball

Bowls – Lawn, Tenpin

Boxing

Camogie

Canoe

Cheerleading

Climbing

Cricket

Cycling

Diving

Equestrian

Fencing

Football

Futsal

Gaelic Football

Golf

Gymnastics

Handball

Hockey

Hurling

Ju Jitsu

Judo

Karate

Karting

Modern Pentathlon / Biathlon

Netball

Orienteering

Pool

Rowing

Rugby

Sailing

Shooting (Clay Pigeon & Rifle)

Snooker

Snow Sports

Squash

Surfing

Swimming

Synchronised Swimming

Table Tennis

Taekwondo

Tennis

Trampolining

Triathlon

Ultimate Frisbee

Volleyball

Wakeboarding

Water Polo

Water Skiing

Weightlifting

Wind Surfing

Wrestling

 

Team Sport Caps

MAXIMUM Number of Applicants for Team Sports to enter Ulster University through the Talented Athlete Entry Scheme

Sport

Number

Basketball

12

Camogie

25

Cricket

16

Football

20

Gaelic Football

25

Hockey

18

Hurling

25

Netball

12

Rugby

20

Volleyball

12

Water Polo

15

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