Our Whitechapel campus
Take a tour of our Whitechapel campus (just off Brick Lane) with Ed.
Congratulations on being offered a place to join our 2021 founding cohort. This is an incredibly important moment for us - the problems facing humanity are more complex, interconnected and urgent than ever before. And the modern world needs people like you who can tackle these kinds of issues and make a real impact. LIS is built for those who want to shape the world. Not just fit in. Welcome!
Take a tour of our Whitechapel campus (just off Brick Lane) with Ed.
Hear from Marielle about the different housing options that will be available.
Understand the steps we've taken to refine our teaching and learning experience with Hannah.
We know that where you live will play a key role in your university experience. Feeling safe, secure and comfortable at home will enable you to arrive on campus ready to learn. Finding somewhere to live can be daunting. That’s why we’re here to help.
At LIS, we don’t have our own accommodation. Instead, we have established agreements with some of London’s leading accommodation providers. This means that you can socialise and live alongside students from a diverse range of international and national backgrounds from other universities in London. Find out more by taking a look at the different accommodation options.
Our admissions process is separate from UCAS. This means that if you choose to accept your LIS offer, this will have no bearing on any firm or insurance choices you make through UCAS. In effect, you will be able to accept and hold your LIS offer in addition to any choices that you make through UCAS.
Terms and conditions
Please note, if you decide to accept your offer, you will also accept our Terms and Conditions so please make sure you read these along with the School’s Admissions Regulations and Procedures for Students carefully on our Policies page to ensure that you understand what they mean to you.
LIS is the first new provider to gain new degree-awarding powers from the start in over 50 years. Awarded top marks in every area of academic standards and qualities, students graduating from LIS will receive a BASc degree in Interdisciplinary Problems & Methods. LIS is also an official provider of Higher Education and can be found on the OfS register of providers.
Take a look at our introduction and overview to student finance here >>
The Ellen Macarthur Foundation Direction of Travel aims to unite London’s higher education institutions and sets out circular economy targets for the next five years. This is an important step towards London’s zero-carbon by 2050 goals. Read more here >>
Our campus – LIS HQ – is based in Whitechapel, part of London’s East End (Zone 2).
The area is buzzy, multicultural, and creative, with a strong alternative music and arts scene spearheaded by the Whitechapel Art Gallery. In typical London fashion, the architecture is varied, ranging from Georgian and Victorian terraces to converted warehouses and new builds.
We’re a stones throw from the Square Mile, Tower Bridge, and Shoreditch – you can take a stroll up Brick Lane to see lots of street art amongst the bars and cafes. Nearby you’ll also find Old Spitalfields Market, BoxPark, the Brick Lane foodhall, Spitalfields City Farm, Petticoat Lane Market, St. Katherine Dock, and the Nomadic Community Garden.
At LIS, we don’t have our own accommodation. Instead, we have established agreements with some of London’s leading accommodation providers. This means that you can socialise and live alongside students from a diverse range of international and national backgrounds from other universities in London including LSE, UCL, and Queen Mary.
In your second and third years, you can choose to remain in halls, or you might like to share a flat with your friends.
Our accommodation providers have sites across London, in Bethnal Green, Hackney, and Stratford. Prices start at £160 per week.
You can find out more by clicking here.
Some students may also choose to rent privately, or commute from home. Regardless of where you decide to live, we will work hard to build a strong sense of community and belonging amongst all LIS students.
We’ve looked at lots of research into optimal contact hours and have believe that 12-14 hours per week is the sweet spot. Fewer hours than that and there is not enough structure or teaching time; more and you don’t have enough time to reflect and research.
As a rough guideline, you would be expected to spend about double the time studying independently. So, 24-28 hours of independent study. This adds up to no more than a typical working week (i.e. the time you’d spend doing 9am-5pm, Monday to Friday) – but how you manage your independent study time is up to you.
As you progress through the 3 years, you might have fewer contact hours in the form of lectures or, but a higher percentage of one-to-ones.
Teaching will take place in a variety of settings such as lectures, seminars, tutorials, masterclasses, workshops, panel discussions, and crits.
It’s very difficult to know what the UK will look like come the autumn, but we really hope to do as much in-person teaching as possible. This will of course depend on government guidelines and what remains safe for students and staff alike. If we’re unable to teach in person then we will do so online (like other institutions have done so this year). We’ve been building up and testing our digital capabilities through the LIS Sprint and Professional Development programmes, and are confident that we can still provide a great online teaching and learning experience. But face-to-face would still be our preference, COVID permitting.
We will make every reasonable effort to keep students up-to-date with our plans regarding online vs in-person teaching, and will hopefully be able to let you know with more certainty in a few months.
Our degree will make use of a variety of assessment methods – not just essays and problem sets. These include presentations (to peers and external audiences), individual research projects, creating videos and other media, designing campaigns, and short quizzes.
In your final year, you will complete a capstone project – an opportunity for you to work on a real-world problem of your choosing, individually or in teams.
Many of our assessments will reflect the kinds of outputs you’d be expected to produce in a professional setting.
Class sizes will vary depending on the situation. At one end of the scale you’ll have one-to-ones and small group tutorials, and at the other end of the scale you’ll have lectures that take place in large groups.
We also have an excellent student-to-faculty ratio, of around ten students per faculty member.
You can scroll down to the ‘Degree Structure’ section of this page.
To an extent, yes.
For each problem cycle, you will explore the problem from four different disciplinary perspectives. In small groups, you will choose one discipline from each of these broad areas: physical sciences/maths, life sciences/environmental sciences, social sciences, humanities/arts. You’ll then select two of your chosen disciplines for further study.
We will cycle through 4-5 problem areas over the course of the degree (e.g. social issues, ethics and technology) and these are set by faculty. As part of your small groups, you’ll be able to refine the problem area further, and really delve into a particular aspect of the problem that interests you.
In years #2 and #3, you also have the flexibility with elective modules to select certain disciplinary or problem areas that are more in-keeping with your own interests (though we still require breadth – i.e., you must both qualitative and quantitive courses).
And of course, the real-world problem you focus on for your final year Capstone Project – and the disciplinary perspectives you adopt – are up to you (within reason!).
At LIS, when we talk about ‘specialising’, we aren’t talking about gaining deep knowledge in one particular part of a subject. We’re talking about specialising at the intersection of disciplines e.g. by combining psychology and law to understand the legal decision-making processes of judges and juries; or by combining sociology, geography and physics to understand aspects of C02 reduction for Climate Change in different countries. This is interdisciplinary specialisation.
You’ll be able to develop your own area of interdisciplinary expertise through the disciplines you choose within problem areas, through the elective modules you choose in years #2 and #3, and through your final capstone project.
You are welcome to take a year abroad between years, but we don’t currently offer a formal year studying abroad.
We don’t currently offer the option to study languages. That being said, you are welcome to speak with your academic tutor about ways you might include outside studies in a foreign language into your time at LIS.
It’s great to see the ID movement growing, we’re really excited to be a part of that. But most ID degrees in the UK, e.g. liberal arts and sciences programmes, entail studying a number of modules across different departments at a university. Students tend to study several subjects at the same time, but rarely are they given the opportunity to really bring disciplines together.
So we don’t have departments. Instead, at LIS, interdisciplinarity means finding out what happens when you combine disciplines – maths with design, anthropology with data science, statistics with philosophy – to generate hybrid knowledge.
Internships are optional (but strongly encouraged) and we commit to brokering an internship for all students who apply to take one on – assuming you are in good disciplinary standing at LIS. And whilst we can’t guarantee your top choices, we will certainly take your preferences into account.
Typically, internships will last for a period of four to five weeks (or part-time equivalent) each year.
Immersive internships will typically take place after term time at the start of the summer holidays. Impact (project-based) internships may take place throughout the year as they can be done part-time. There will be no clash with term-time, however.
Should you wish to take a year out we can help you with finding opportunities (but that’s not how the programme is structured).
We’ve spent a lot of time thinking about student employability. This is why we broker yearly internships for our students, as well as dedicated 1:1 careers support, access to a range of workshops, as well as opportunities to interact with employers and outside organisations through guest talks, site visits and networking events.
A BASc degree from LIS could set you up for the civil service fast track, a future in entrepreneurship or venture capital, large multinational firms like Virgin or Unilever, high-growth tech, professional services firms like McKinsey or KPMG, graduate front line jobs in social work or the police, international NGOs like the WWF, or indeed a life in academia. You could also pursue a law conversion and become a solicitor or barrister.
Our network of hundreds of employers are all excited by the prospect of hiring BASc graduates – to the extent they are starting to send their existing workforce on LIS short courses so they can get these skills!
Absolutely – you’ll receive a BASc degree which is the same level of qualification you’d get from a traditional university.
Prof Carl Gombrich, our Director of Teaching and Learning, used to run the BASc at UCL, and many of his graduates went on to do postgraduate work (Master’s and PhDs) in a variety of fields.
There will be freshers week! We want you to feel part of LIS, as well as the vibrant student community here in London. So, during induction, we will have our own version of freshers week, while also connecting you to events organised centrally across multiple universities around the capital. Depending on COVID-19, these events may take place online, in person, or a mixture of both.
We’ll also be kicking off with a number of personal development and wellbeing activities where you can get to know your cohort, as well as the wider LIS team.
Within the first month of induction, our founding cohort will be advised to found their student association. We will give you a budget, and a space in which to gather. This will be a really important and exciting moment, as our founding cohort sets the LIS stage for years to come.
We are planning for around 100 in the cohort. However it is a challenging process to get an offer from LIS and we are determined to start with a diverse group of outstanding, motivated students. So we may start with slightly fewer (or slightly more) than 100; we won’t know for sure until closer to opening.
All students will have a dedicated personal academic tutor, welfare advisor, and career mentor. An onsite counsellor will also be available to students. We’re working with partners like Grit to set up a programme of free-to-all wellbeing and enrichment activities including sessions on diversity, resilience, play and mindfulness. Students will also have access to general advice and guidance on topics like nutrition, exercise, and financial management.
It’s really important to state that everyone is an individual and your specific position might be different, so we recommend that you read around and research the topic.
The best sources of information we recommend are: (a) The government’s own website; (b) the British Council (an important charity with links to the UK Government); (c) the UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA).
An international student is someone who does not have “settled” status in the UK and would need to apply for a visa to study in the UK.
There are many rules and exceptions around being “settled”. In brief, being settled means both being normally living in the UK and not having any immigration restriction on the length of your stay in the UK.
If you fall into any of the following groups then you will not normally have any restrictions on the length of your stay in the UK:
(i) If you have indefinite leave to remain (ILR) or Indefinite Leave to Enter (ILE);
(ii) If your passport describes you as as a “British citizen”;
(iii) If you have a Right of Abode in the UK in your passport;
(iv) If you are a citizen of the Republic of Ireland.
There are other exceptions which you can learn about here.
We are currently preparing for a sponsorship licence application. We hope to be able to announce a decision in the Summer of 2021.
Should LIS be successful in being granted a sponsorship licence then we will be able to accept international students as part of the founding cohort in 2021.
If you are an international student, you are able to submit an application. We will inform you as soon as possible once we have received a decision from the Home Office regarding a sponsorship licence.
As always, we advise you to keep your options open.
The most important thing to remember is that you can hold an accepted offer to LIS at the same time as any offers you have through UCAS. We would recommend that you wait until you get your results before making any final choices.
Once results come out (we think that this will be in July or August due to Covid) you will have two options if you no longer wish to take up your place at your firm UCAS choice:
1) You can accept your LIS offer and withdraw from UCAS
2) You can accept your LIS offer and reject your places in UCAS. If you do the latter, then you will be entered into clearing
Before taking either of these actions, we recommend notifying an adviser at your school/centre.
We want to make sure that you’re given every opportunity to succeed at LIS and we know that everyone’s situation is different. So that we can provide financial support to meet different needs we have three main forms of bursary. If you receive any of the financial support listed below you will never need to pay anything back
If your household income (the money that your parents/carers earn together) is below £25,000 then you will be eligible for bursaries in each year of study.
We know that your financial situation can change at any time. To support you when you most need help, we have a dedicated fund for hardship grants which are decided on a case-by-case basis.
We are currently setting up a charity – the LIS Foundation – to provide additional support to students. We will announce more about this in the coming months.
As part of our internships programme, we will be brokering opportunities for all our students. We will ensure that all internships pay at least the London Living Wage and expect that a typical 5-week internship will be worth approximately £2,000.
As a registered provider students who study at LIS will be eligible to access student finance (including both tuition fees and maintenance loans).