Written by kdanceydowns
Your exams have finished. If they didn’t go quite as well as you had planned, or you’ve just decided you’d like to apply to uni, you might now be looking into other options. It is likely you’re unsure where to start, and I was in the same place you were a year ago. I knew I hadn’t done as well in the exams as I had wanted to and needed to start looking into Clearing, but had no idea where to begin.
There are a couple of things which can help make the whole process run a lot more smoothly. Preparation and knowing what you want is key! Think back to what it was you were looking for initially when you began applying through UCAS (that will seem like a lifetime ago!). What were the key things about universities you were looking for? The course content and structure, the location and night life, or the job prospects from those universities? If you know what it is you are looking for then you can begin researching universities much more efficiently.
Once you have decided which universities you would like to apply to, you have to begin the Clearing process. This involves calling universities and asking if there are any places on the course you would like to apply to. You can check this ahead of time on the websites which will save you disappointment on the phone. To make the phone call go as smoothly as possible make sure you have all your details about what grades you got, the course reference number and are in a quiet and comfortable place (having younger siblings in the room next door screaming isn’t going to help with your stress levels!). You will also want to have a pen and paper handy by the phone so you can write down anything important that you get told.
When you get a Clearing offer you want to accept, you will have to update your UCAS profile and accept your new offer! This will often also be accompanied by an email confirmation of the offer and means you are formally declining all other university offers. Make sure you get onto this quickly so you can start making all the final preparations!
I’m not going to lie, I did start to panic when I had to apply through Clearing, but instead of letting my head get clouded by negative thoughts, I made the best of the situation and am now happier than I have ever been at BU! My course is great, I have met a whole host of amazing people and Bournemouth is a really beautiful place to spend an important part of your life. Sometimes you have to take what life gives you and just roll with it!
By Jem Minnigin