Tuesday, 15 December 2015

Christmas opening hours

Everyone needs a break now and again, so we’ll be closed for a short time over the holiday period too. If you need to contact us, take a look at our opening hours.
Remember, there’s lots of advice and answers to the top questions we get asked on our video wall, and you can always check out our FAQs.

If you do leave a question for us on Facebook or Twitter while we’re closed, our advisers will respond as quickly as possible when they’re back. 

Friday, 11 December 2015

Five reasons to sign up to the UCAS newsletter

So you’ve followed us on social media and you might have even downloaded our app. You’ve probably read some of our blogs and watched the videos on our video wall, but did you know you can also sign up for monthly newsletters? Here are our top five reasons why you should:

Get useful information and advice
Each month, we’ll include useful advice on topics such as choosing courses, practical ‘how-to’ guides about filling in your application, and guidance on what to write about in your personal statement.

      Never miss a deadline!
We’ll give you plenty of notice about all the application deadlines and things you need to be doing for them.

      You don’t need to do anything!
Once a month, we’ll send your bite-sized newsletter directly to your inbox.

      Get reassurance and tips from other students
Doing something new – like applying to uni – can be scary! We’ll share tips, thoughts, and advice with you from other students in your shoes.

      Read about the things that matter to YOU
Your monthly newsletter will include articles on things like careers, staying healthy, and saving money. Some articles are written by experts and some by students, giving you a balanced view on all sorts of topics.

What are you waiting for? Sign up now!

15 January deadline - how to apply...

Looking to start uni for 2016 entry? The deadline for most courses is 15 January. If you’re not sure what deadline your course has, check in our search tool.

When you’ve found that dream course you’re interested in you need to register, which will give you a username and ask you to create a password. Once you’ve done that, you can get stuck in with the application.

So once you’ve logged in, where do you begin?

Getting started
The basics come first; with questions based around your personal details so they should be straight-forward enough to answer. If you come across any questions that aren't clear, click on the red question mark which explains what you need to include. Check out our handy how-to video for a more in-depth view of the application.

Here you need to add the schools or colleges you’ve attended since the age of 13, along with the qualifications you’ve studied. It’s worth having your certificates to hand as they’ll be useful if you’re unsure of any of the details, such as your awarding bodies. There’s quite a lot of info you need to add here so we’ve created this video to help you.

Personal statement
This is your opportunity to shout about your strengths, talk about your interests and expand on why you want to go to university and study your chosen course. On a practical note, it’s best to create a draft of your personal statement in a Word document first, then copy it over once you’re happy with it. It’s a good idea to ask someone in your family, a teacher, or a friend to have a look over it before you add it to your application. A second pair of eyes will help to spot any errors you might’ve made or remind you of some important information you’ve missed off. Reading it aloud a couple of times is a good way to check that what you’ve written flows correctly.

If you’re not sure where to start with your personal statement, try out our handy personal statement tool which will get you started.

You need a reference before you can finish your application. This is usually a current or previous teacher, but if you’ve been working for a few years someone who knows you in a professional capacity, such as an employer, may be the right person. Your referee can’t be someone in your family or a friend.

There are a couple of ways to get a reference – read on to see which is the right way for you.

i) If you’re applying through your school or college: 

When you register, you’ll be asked to enter a buzzword when you select that you’ll be applying through your school or college. This will link your application to your school or college so your teacher can write your reference. They’ll also be able to look over your application and help you along the way, and when the time comes, they’ll send it to us on your behalf.

ii) If you’re applying independently: 

There are a couple of ways to get a reference if you’re applying independently. If your previous school or college is happy to complete a reference then in the ‘Options’ section you can select ‘ask a registered school, college or centre to write a reference only.’ This route needs a buzzword from the school or college so remember to discuss this with them first.

Alternatively, you can enter your referee’s contact details in the reference section and we’ll send them an email with instructions on what to do.

If you’re opting for this route, make sure you speak to your referee first to check they’ll be able to provide your reference before you send them a request. Let them know something about the courses you are applying for so their reference is as relevant as possible. Once they've completed it you’ll be sent an email and the reference section will be marked with a red tick.

Good luck with your application!

If you have any questions about applying then have a look on our website. You can also get in touch with our advisers on Facebook or Twitter and they’ll do their best to help.