You’re probably familiar with what Clearing is – maybe you even know someone who didn’t quite make their grades and found a place at university through Clearing.
What you may not be aware of is that the period is actually called Clearing and Adjustment. While Clearing is an opportunity for people who got lower grades than expected to get onto a degree programme, Adjustment is a chance for those who did better than expected to upgrade their choice.
So, how does Adjustment work?
If on Results Day, you find that you have got into your firm choice of university – and actually got much higher grades than you needed – you might be thinking of trying for an alternative course. This may be a course which you had initially discounted because the grade requirements were too high.
Say, for example, you need BBB to get onto your course at University 1. If you actually get AAB, you can try and get a place on a course that is perhaps at a university with higher entry requirements, such as University 2.
If you don’t manage to get onto the course at University 2, because, for example, all the places have been filled, you still keep your place at University 1.
Sounds great – what do I have to do?
Firstly, you’ll have to register for Adjustment: go onto UCAS Track and click ‘Register for Adjustment’ on the choices screen. You’ll only be able to do this if you have met – and exceeded – the results required for your firm choice. You only have five 24-hour periods in which to use the Adjustment service until it closes on 18 August, six days after A Level Results Day.
Next, get calling. Universities will have a dedicated Clearing and Adjustment hotline running from 10 August, so pick up the phone and ask about the courses you’re interested in. You can do some research beforehand through UCAS to find a course and university that looks right for you.
It’s a good idea to call a range of universities and gather information about course requirements and vacancies – but don’t verbally accept until you’re absolutely sure. You can only accept one university through Adjustment – so think carefully about whether you will enjoy the course, the location, and university as a whole.
When you’re sure of your new course and are offered a place on it, verbally accept and your UCAS will be updated. UCAS have plenty of information about the Adjustment process if you want to find out more.