Knowing what to expect will make things run more smoothly so that you can handle anything.
Can I prepare for results day?
Note: the following advice focuses on UCAS. The main thrust of the advice will hold good for applicants through other platforms.
Make sure that you have your login details for UCAS. (Your school will not have these, because of data protection. Contact the UCAS Student Helpline to obtain your login details if necessary. ( 0371 468 0 468 – from UK or +44 330 3330 230 from outside UK.)
Make sure that you have the name and contact details of Admissions Tutors/ Departments at your CF and CI universities in case you need to call them.
It may be useful, as well, to know how to contact the relevant Heads of Departments if you need to discuss your results and possible re-marks or reviews of your examinations.
If you feel that you have under-performed, do some research in Clearing (see below), even before your Results Day, and get ready to apply to different universities and/or courses on the day itself.
UCAS will be listing courses available through Clearing from 5 July onwards.
When do the universities receive my results?
IB results are released to students on 6 July.
A Level and BTEC results are released to students on 17 August.
Universities may well receive your results before you do. It is not unusual for UCAS to update your status before Results Day.
You will first receive an overview of your results, which will be followed by a breakdown withthe marks for the different components.
You may wish to speak to a Head of Department, your teacher/ other subject specialist and your Head of Sixth Form/ UCAS Coordinator for advice about your results.
If you have narrowly missed the terms of your offer, it may be worth exploring the possibility of a re-mark or a review of your scripts. This can be an exercise in clerical checking rather than a full-blown re-mark, so please take advice before you go down that route. It can be expensive.
If you are going to opt for a re-mark or review, be aware that marks can go down, stay the same or go up, so be strategic. Don’t risk a grade.
You can also request to see a scanned copy of your marked papers to decide, with the relevant subject specialist, if it is worth requesting a re-mark or a review. (This is slower than opting for a re-mark or a review immediately.)
Results – and outcomes for university places?
- You meet the terms of your CF (Conditional Firm), so your first-choice place is confirmed.
- You miss the terms of your CF, but meet the terms of your CI (Conditional Insurance), and your second-choice place is confirmed.
- Your CF and/or CI universities make you an offer for a different course.
- You may not have your UCAS status updated immediately, if you are a ‘near-miss’ candidate. You may need to wait until universities have received all the results.
- You are unsuccessful, having missed the terms of both offers by some way. You are then in Clearing (see below); your status will be ‘Eligible for Clearing’ and you will have a Clearing code that you will use for any fresh application.
I missed the terms of my offers – what can I do?
If you have missed the terms of your offers (CF or CI), your universities may still take you. You will need to call them to ask if they will still take you. (They do not want to hear from your parents or teachers, but from you.)
We would advise you to prepare a ‘script’ of what you will say, covering:
- UCAS ID number.
- Course name(s) and code(s).
- Some comment about why you still believe that you are a suitable candidate for the course (passionate about the subject, eager to follow that particular course – be specific about it, and so on).
- Comment on why you feel you under-performed in the examinations, citing any extenuating circumstances (which should have been identified already to the relevant Admissions tutors).
- If appropriate, mention that you have grounds to request a re-mark or a review, and confirm that you will be requesting one.
- Follow any such conversation up with an email to the person with whom you spoke (so make sure you get their name and title and contact details), reinforcing your desire to take up the place that you have missed.
Your school should be willing to support you in your attempts to persuade the universities to take you. An email from your Head of Sixth Form/ UCAS Coordinator will add weight to your approach.
Clearing has become an excellent way of finding other universities or courses. Look for suitable universities and courses – and contact each university before you apply. This means a lot of phoning around.
If you have done better than expected, it may be worth looking to see if you can ‘trade-up’. Hold onto your CF place while you research the possibilities and contact any university that might offer you a better place/ course. A lot of good universities hold places in Clearing for that possibility.
Do not decline your CF until you know that another university will take you through Clearing.
Check out Clearing and Clearing Plus:
The UCAS website is the place to look to get more information: www.ucas.com. Please consult it.