Applying to university or college isn’t as complicated as it sounds, so whether you are just starting your UCAS application, or you’re already working on it, we hope this handy guide will help navigate your way through.
Starting your application:
All students applying for an undergraduate course must make a formal application through UCAS which stands for the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service. The UCAS website has loads of helpful information when you are considering applying as an undergraduate student.
All applications must be completed online via UCAS Hub, you need to pay UCAS £22.00 if you are applying for one choice, or £26.50 for two to five choices using a debit or credit card.
What makes up an application?
- Course choices (you can choose up to five)
- Qualifications (you must enter all your qualifications from secondary education onwards)
- Employment history (if you’ve had any paid, unpaid, or voluntary work)
- Personal statement
You can apply for up to five course choices (with a few exceptions). There is no preference order, and your chosen universities and colleges will not see where you have applied until after you have responded to any offers made to you. UCAS will let you know how to accept or decline an offer of a place via the UCAS Hub.
For more information about completing your UCAS application head over to the UCAS website for a step-by-step guide.
Writing your personal statement is an important part of the process when applying to university or college through UCAS. This is your opportunity to show your interest in the course, describe your future ambitions, skill sets, and experience which will set you apart from other applicants.
Watch our recent live Q&A session with our resident expert Kathleen Moran who regularly delivers training sessions to schools and colleges:
You can also check out this handy video from UCAS on how to plan, start, structure and finish your personal statement.
What happens after you have applied?
You will receive a welcome email from UCAS confirming your choices. The universities and colleges you have applied to will then decide whether to make you an offer. Some may ask you to come for an interview before taking that decision. Please check our key dates below.
When you receive a decision from the universities or colleges you applied to, you’ll receive one of the following:
- Unconditional offer: means you’ve got a place, although there might still be a few things to arrange.
- Conditional offer: means you still need to meet some conditions– usually exam results.
- Withdrawn application: means a course choice has been withdrawn by either you or the university or college. If the university or college has withdrawn your application, they’ll let you know their reason.
- Unsuccessful application: means a university or college have decided not to offer you a place on a course. Sometimes they’ll give a reason, either with their decision or at a later date. If not, you can contact them to ask if they’ll discuss the reason with you
Don’t worry if you don’t get any offers – you might be able to add extra choices now or look for course availability later on.
- 26 January 2022: Applications for the majority of UCAS Undergraduate courses should be submitted to UCAS by 6.00pm on this date. This is the ‘equal consideration’ deadline, which means universities and colleges must consider all applications received by this time equally. It is important to remember that once you have submitted your application that you might not receive an offer straight away so it’s best not to worry or panic if you hear of other applicants receiving theirs.
- 25 February 2022: UCAS Extra opens
- 19 May 2022: Universities and colleges decisions due on applications submitted by 26 January 2022.
- 9 June 2022: Decision deadline for applicants who have received all decisions by 19 May 2022.
- 30 June 2022: The deadline for late applications. Any applications after this date will automatically be entered into Clearing.
- 5 July 2022: Clearing opens for eligible applicants.
- 13 July 2022: Universities and colleges decisions due on late applications.
- 14 July 2022: Decision deadline for late applicants who have received all decisions from universities and colleges.
- 9 August 2022: Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) results day
- 18 August 2022: Joint Council for Qualifications (JCQ) results day