So you’ve applied to University for your undergraduate degree, but now what happens? 

Applying for Uni can be stressful.  

But what happens after you’ve done all the hard work of researching, writing personal statements, visiting different unis and sending off your undergraduate applications? 

Processing takes time... 

Once you’ve applied through UCAS, they send your application to your chosen universities. 

They will then process each one carefully. This can take time – depending on the size of the team managing applications! 

If you don't hear back from your chosen university for a few weeks, don’t worry!  

At this time of year, university admissions teams are receiving hundreds of applications – it can take quite a bit of time - a few weeks. 

Each university has different processing times and methods. If your friends are all hearing from their chosen institutions, but you haven’t yet – don’t worry!  

What is the decision-making process for universities? 

Yes, universities will check that you meet the entry criteria stated for the course you applied for, but they will also consider other factors when deciding whether to offer a place to a student or not! 

They’ll look at: 

  • Personal statements 
  • Experience and skills – e.g. Relevant work experience  
  • Predicted exam grades if you’ve not sat them yet 
  • References 
  • Non-academic experience and achievements (e.g. volunteer work, extra-curricular activities)
  • Individual circumstances (e.g. have you been in care? Universities call this ‘contextualised admissions’ so they can take your individual needs and achievements in context). 

The different types of offer: 

Once a university has reviewed your application, they will send you their decision. It could be: 

  • Conditional – they will hold a place for you, but it depends on you meeting certain exam results or criteria.  
  • Unconditional – You've met the criteria already and the University is offering you a place. Remember to check all the details and make sure it’s the right choice for you. 
  • Offer Unsuccessful or withdrawn – The uni isn’t offering you a place on this course, but you might be suited to another course, or want to look at other options through Clearing. (link) 

Find out more at the UCAS website.

If you're applying for an undergraduate degree via Clearing, visit our handy Clearing information page packed full of tips, case studies and how to guides!


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