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What is UCAS Clearing? An Introduction to the Clearing Procedure

Students who applied to UCAS for the 2023 academic year may have recently received acceptance offers from their preferred universities. While receiving an offer is cause for celebration, some students might still face disappointment if they haven't been accepted to their desired university. But there's no need to lose hope, as students can still secure a place through the UCAS Clearing process. Let's take a closer look at what UCAS Clearing entails.

Screencap from UCAS Clearing webpage

Source: UCAS


Understanding the UCAS Clearing Procedure

For those who are still waiting for acceptance notifications, the anticipation can be overwhelming. Don't worry, though, as every year, over fifty thousand students obtain their places in UK universities through Clearing. UCAS Clearing is designed to allocate backup places for students who haven't secured offers. If you fall into any of the following categories, you are eligible for Clearing:


- Applied to UCAS after June 30th

- Haven't received any university offers

- Exam results didn't meet the entry requirements of preferred courses

- Previously declined a university place through the UCAS system

Don't Delay UCAS Clearing! Find Your Ideal Course Early

The UCAS Clearing process starts accepting applications in early July, specifically on July 5th for the 2023 academic year, with a deadline on October 17th.


To secure a place through UCAS Clearing, you need to personally contact universities. Reach out to them via email or phone to check if any vacancies remain in your desired courses. If you are accepted, you can update your course preference on UCAS by selecting "Add Clearing Choice" and providing the required information. It's essential to note that during Clearing, you can only apply to one course.


Though UCAS Clearing offers nearly three months for application, it's crucial to act promptly when applying to other UK universities through Clearing. The process of contacting universities and securing acceptance takes time, and places are given on a first-come, first-served basis. So, it's highly recommended to prepare proactively to avoid missing out on university opportunities.


Where to Find Clearing Courses

You have two methods to discover which UK universities offer Clearing courses:

laptop, notebook, cup, vase on wooden table

Source: Unsplash 

Method 1: Using UCAS Course Search

UCAS's website features a course search function that conveniently lists available courses for students to apply to. You can filter courses based on your grades, abilities, subjects, entry requirements, and university locations to find suitable options.

Method 2: Accessing UCAS Hub

The UCAS Hub allows you to find courses that match your qualifications. By clicking on "view your matches," the system presents up to 50 courses that best suit your profile.


If you encounter any difficulties or can't find the right course through UCAS Clearing, feel free to consult Cyclopes for comprehensive educational counselling. We analyse your grades and guide you toward the best choices.


International Students Applying for Clearing - Important Points to Note

The application process for international students is generally similar to UK students. However, as international students require a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) for their study visa application, it's essential to complete the Clearing process early to avoid delays.


Additionally, some UK universities may not release Clearing courses before the A-Level results day (August 17, 2023). So, if you're interested in specific university courses, stay updated with the latest information. International students taking the International Baccalaureate (IB) might have an advantage as the IB results day is earlier than A-Level results day, allowing them to apply to UK universities through UCAS Clearing in advance.


If you're unfamiliar with UCAS and the Clearing procedure, don't hesitate to reach out to us for more information. Cyclopes offers professional guidance on overseas education, and our C Education consultants will design the most suitable plan based on your circumstances.


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