How to survive clearing

Posted in: News, Student Careers, University Life

Your clearing guide for results day

Its results day, your palms are sweaty as you greet your college teachers at the front doors. The room is crowded as you make your way to the desk. Your brown envelope falls victim to your shaking hands. You open it and see the results of all your hard work on your A-Levels. 

What next?

If you haven’t got the grades that you needed to get into your first choice your offer will have been rejected on UCAS Track; do not panic. If university is still your path there are several things that you can do. Don’t be afraid of clearing. According to UCAS over 47k students found their university place through clearing in 2021, that’s almost 10% of applicants so you will be in good company.

Why choose clearing?

If you change your mind about your firm and insurance choices, and wish to apply to a different course or university then you are able to enquire through clearing which opens first thing on results day. Universities all over the country have extra teams working who are able to coach you through the process. You may end up with a better offer than you had from your original choices.

UCAS have made the clearing process as easy as possible with the website displaying live updates from universities about the courses and their availability for clearing. More info is available online on the UCAS Clearing Hub.

How long does clearing take?

When you call the universities they may take your grades and make a decision there and then. For medical, science, or arts courses you may be invited to an interview or portfolio showing to ensure that you meet the requirements of the course. You usually have two days to accept an offer however some universities keep their clearing open until Freshers week. This is a question for the individual universities.

Top tips for the clearing process:

  1. Do not panic. If you are disappointed with your grades it is important to remember that you are not alone and this isn’t the end of your journey.
  2. Have a plan. If you come out of an exam with that feeling that we all know so well, start preparing for the worst. Keep the information of other courses and universities on hand for when the big day comes. At least then when you open your envelope you have a plan of action.
  3. Don’t rush your decision. If you have an offer from somewhere that you really did not like, are you going to take it just because it has been sent? You have many options. Call your first and insurance choices, often they may reconsider if you demonstrate your passion. If that is unsuccessful you are always able to retake your year, either at your college or a nearby sixth form. Don’t go to a university that isn’t right for you.

Don’t forget!

If you have changed university do not forget that your accommodation provider will need to be told that you are no longer living there.

Don’t be put off by the clearing process!

  • Have a plan
  • Be positive
  • Don’t panic

Clearing advice

De Montfort University Clearing Hub

University of Leicester Clearing Hub

Photo by Lacie Slezak on Unsplash

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