UCAS Clearing is for anyone who didn't meet the conditions of their university offer; did better than they expected and wants to see if they can find a 'better' course; didn't receive any offers; or anyone that did not apply to a UK university before the June 30 deadline.
Over 60,000 applicants obtained places through Clearing last year. These include places at top universities and on sought after courses, for a whole number of reasons - not least because of students failing to get their grades, or last minute switches from students who perhaps did better than expected.
You can apply for a course using Clearing from July 5 until October 17, 2023 – if you’re not already holding an offer from a university or college, and the course still has places. However, the majority of Clearing places won't become available until after A Level results are published on Thursday, August 17.
When we asked UCAS for the simplest way to find your Clearing place, their education experts said:
“Clearing offers choice and flexibility for any student, whether they’ve received their predicted, better, or lower grade - especially for anyone wanting to keep their options open, or change course or institution. They can also use UCAS’ Clearing Plus tool that matches them to a personalised list of available courses.
“Clearing Plus is only available if you’re unsuccessful with your application or are applying for the first time for a place in Clearing. You’ll be able to ‘view your matches’ in your UCAS Hub.
“We can help you secure a place in three simple steps:
Need some inspiration? If you’ve already applied and find yourself in Clearing, you can sign in to your application to see courses you’ve been matched to and might like.
The answer is yes. International students can use Clearing in the same way as a UK student. The Clearing process works in the same way as it does for UK students, but there are some differences around the documents required.
Most international students will need to apply for a student visa., which normally takes three weeks to process. Students who aren't native English speakers may also need to complete an English language assessment.
Some international students will receive their exam results earlier than most UK students, such as IB students who collect their results on July 6. This can mean they have more time to navigate their way through Clearing compared to those doing A Levels. However, the majority of Clearing places won't become available until after A Level results are published on Thursday, August 17.
To be prepared for the call:
- Have a pen and paper to hand. You will need to write things down.
- Have a phone charger - this is not the time to have a battery malfunction.
- Know your GCSE results – they might come up.
- Know your UCAS Clearing number. Tutors will want to view your original application.
- Know the course code, name and details of the course content you’re enquiring about.
- Read your personal statement and know the key points you want to make: Why that specific course? Why should you get the place? As importantly, think of questions to ask the university to show genuine interest...
- Have an answer as to why you think you didn’t achieve your grades. Think about any positives from your results - where did you get your grades? Where did you exceed them?