March 26, 2019

Ask the Experts: university Clearing advice

University clearing can be a scary and daunting prospect for those whose initial plans didn’t quite work out. Whether you just missed out on the grades you were hoping for or have changed your mind about your career path, there’s no need to postpone your future – university clearing can see you still secure a place at a top higher education institution.

For those considering the 2014 university clearing process, feel secure in your decisions with a bit of advice from these experts and those who have been where you are now.


UCAS clearing
UCAS clearing

The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service is the admissions service that serves all students looking to gain a place in higher education in Britain. The Clearing service through UCAS offers students who have not received any offers after the initial application process the chance to see which courses have places remaining and to be filled. Here’s what UCAS has said about students looking to gain a place at university via Clearing:

  1. Before results day, make sure you have your Track login details to hand. Also make sure you’re in the country and able to access to the internet on results day so you can get in touch with us or your chosen unis if you need to.
  2. On results day check Track to find out if you’ve been accepted or if you’re in Clearing.
  3. Don’t panic if you’re in Clearing! Clearing is an ideal way for you to find another course. If you need to search for a course in Clearing check it will contain an official list of all the courses in Clearing.
  4. For more information visit:

Student Finance

Derek Ross, Director of Operations and Customer Services at the Student Loans Company
Derek Ross, Director of Operations and Customer Services at the Student Loans Company

Student Finance England and Student Finance Wales are the people to turn to when it comes to financing your study at higher education. Whether it’s living costs or tuition fees that you need help paying for, the Student Loans Company can help you out every step of the way.

“If you’re thinking of applying for a course through Clearing, you should be planning your finances too. You don’t need to wait to apply for student finance – it’s best to get your application in as early as possible and update the details later, if necessary.

“Where you apply for student finance depends on where you live. The Student Loans Company processes all applications for students in England and is, from this year, taking over the processing of applications for new students in Wales. Students in England should apply now at and students in Wales should apply at

“There’s also lots of information available on what you can apply for and what’s available depending on your circumstances. Tuition fee loans are available to cover the costs of university fees and these are paid directly to the university or college, while maintenance loans and grants are available to help with living costs.

“Your repayments are linked to your income and you only make repayments when your income is over £21,000 a year.” Derek Ross, Director of Operations and Customer Services at the Student Loans Company





Push are the leading independent guide for students at university and talk about all things higher education, gap years, open days, student finance and anything today’s student needs to know.

Click here to take a look at the website.

“Never accept a place in clearing unless you’re sure it’s what you want and you’ve had a chance to understand what you’re letting yourself in for – ideally, by visiting the uni. Always remember you’ve got the option of taking a year out and reapplying the next year in a less rushed way. That often leads to happier results.” Johnny Rich, Push



The University Blog

Reputable education blog site, The University Blog, is committed to sharing study tips, comment on higher education news, personal development tips and plenty more topics of interest to today’s students.

“Make sure that your clearing decisions are made with the same care you took when you made your original choices. Don’t rush in to anything and don’t grab at the first thing you see out of desperation. At a minimum, read up on institutions and courses to see which look like a good fit for you. The more time you have, the more you can check out, from visiting the place to asking current students about their experiences.” Martin Hughes, The University Blog

GSM London

“The more flexible you are in your choice of course, the greater your chances of success in securing an offer. However, don’t pick a subject just because you’ve got the required grades – think about your wider academic interests, the subjects you have studied at school and your career aspirations.

“Choose a course you think you’ll enjoy and do well in and will get you the job you want when you graduate. Some institutions have dedicated careers teams and course/personal advisors who can help you map your journey from your first year through to graduation and beyond.”

GSM London Clearing Students

Here is a quotation from a first year BSc Accounting and Finance course student who chose to study at GSM London’s Greenford campus because of the accelerated career route:

“I applied to study at GSM London because I wanted a quicker pathway to my career, and they have two year bachelor degrees. They were my first choice during clearing and the application was very quick and easy. I had a 10 minute phone call with the clearing course advisor, and received my acceptance letter less than 3 hours later!

“I believe my learning is enhanced by the small tutorial groups, and all the staff and lecturers are friendly. We always get a chance to talk to our lecturer on a one-to-one basis, which I don’t think would be that easy in other institutions. If I had to sum up my Accounting and Finance degree, I would say GSM London is helping me ‘build myself a bright future’.”

So if you are looking to start undergraduate study in London, but didn’t quite receive the A Level grades you were looking for or have changed your mind about your course or place of study, don’t be disheartened. There are plenty of other options out there and the path of university clearing could just be the best choice you ever made.

Why not ask the Experts for university Clearing advice
Why not ask the Experts for university Clearing advice

Image Credits: Push, CollegeDegrees360 (, Student Finance England and Student Finance Wales, UCAS.

This content was written by Rachel Smith. Please feel free to visit my Google+ Profile to read more stories.

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