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UCAS clearing: Our top tips

It can be disheartening when you don’t secure a place on the course you want or at the university you have set your heart on. Or maybe the application deadline passed before you decided that you do in fact want to enrol at university.

But fear not, because we’re about to take you through our best tips for the Clearing process.

What is clearing?

Clearing is a process that usually takes place between July-October, matching students who haven’t secured an offer yet with available courses.

It might be right to predict that Clearing is going to be much busier this year, due to the current pandemic. That’s why it’s more important than ever to prepare in case you find yourself needing to use it.

Tip one – Plan ahead

Get started with the process early. There will be lots of students in your position who are keen to secure a place on your course.

Start by making a list of all the universities that you would be happy to enrol at. Jot down their key contact details and dates of their Clearing schedule.

You might find it hard to get through at first, so it would be good to know what time they shut their phone lines. If you’ve prepared and have a list to work through, this will be much easier.

Don’t forget that there will be an advisor at your school or college on hand to help, with a lot of experience and all the best tips.

Tip two – Don’t be afraid to sell yourself

Prepare some bullet points or a short script beforehand, letting the university know why they should give you a place. But be careful not to read it word for word and just let your personality shine through.

Get across why you’re passionate about the course you’re applying for and what your career ambitions are, and don’t be afraid to push for an informal decision about whether they’d be willing to accept you.

Tip three – Stay openminded

You’ll probably have some universities at the top of your list, but don’t be afraid to stay openminded and consider universities you may not be familiar with.

There might be a university with good stats for your course of interest that you hadn’t previously come across. What have you got to lose?

Similarly, be open to courses that may be slightly different to your original choice as you may still get much of the same modules.

Tip four – Don’t rush into a decision

As much as it can be stressful, and you might get to a point where you think any place is better than no place, don’t rush into a decision in the heat of the moment.

You will usually be offered a 24-hour period to make a final decision, so continue to gather all your options in this time and weigh up your choices. But make sure you don’t miss your window!

Written by the Nurtur Team