University Clearing – Understanding Uni Clearing

Clearing – what’s it all about?

You may have heard about University Clearing before but not really taken on board what it is for. Hopefully this blog will fill in the gaps. Up until now, your focus as a student will obviously have been on making your university choices and deciding on your firm and insurance decisions. And for most students on 10th August, their university places will be automatically confirmed. But what happens if either you do better than expected with your grades or they dip below what you were expecting?

As a starting point, it’s worth explaining what clearing actually is. Clearing is basically a way of matching up students without offers with course vacancies. As you would expect, certain competitive courses like medicine will use Uni Clearing much less than others.

Clearing officially opens at the start of July for students who haven’t got a place confirmed yet, it then usually hots up once A level results are released. Each summer, universities get the exam results a few days before students get told them, so that they can work out which students have met their offer and therefore how many vacancies they still have to fill. And no, they aren’t allowed to tell you what your grades are or to confirm your place before the 10th, tempting as it is to ask them!

Clearing can be a hectic time, so making sure you get it right is important. Upsetting as it will be not to get into your firm or insurance place, Clearing is there to give you another chance to find a course.

But Clearing isn’t just for students who have missed out on their offers. There is also Ucas Adjustment. This is aimed at students who do better than expected. Or to put it another way, students who get better results than their firm offer is asking for. So for instance if you have been given an offer based on BBB for A levels and you get ABB, you can hold onto your offer but approach other courses to see if they would be able to offer you a place. This process works for BTEC’s and IB’s too, not just A levels! This means you can check out if another course could be a better option for you without giving up a confirmed place. If you want more information about how Adjustment works, take a look here

Hopefully this has given you a brief overview of what University Clearing is and who might be able to use it. It can be a great opportunity to rethink what you want to study at university, but don’t forget that it’s not the only option. Taking a step back to think through your options will ensure that if you do enter Uni Clearing, it’s for all the right reasons rather than just reacting to getting either offer. If you’d like some more information before our next blog with some practical tips, these links will be a great starting point . The new Clearing Plus is also worth finding out about

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