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Clearing FAQs

If you’ve missed your grades, you haven’t secured your first or second choice of course or you haven’t applied through UCAS yet, you’re probably looking at applying through Clearing.

Clearing is how universities and colleges fill any places they still have on their courses. Here’s a few useful things to know:

  • Clearing starts in July and is open until October
  • Clearing is not just for A-level students. It’s for BTEC, IB, Access, mature, international students and other students too

Top tip: When you call us please have your UCAS personal ID, email address, details of your exam results (if you have them already) and details of the course you want to apply for. Our phone number is 01895 265265.

Still have questions? We’re here to help and we thought we’d make life easier by answering some of the most common questions.

When does Clearing open and how long does Clearing last?

Many people think that Clearing opens on A-Level results day. However, Clearing starts in July and ends in October. We will feature our Clearing vacancies on our website, giving you plenty of time to do some planning or research on potential courses of interest.

How do I find a course and apply through Clearing?
  • Step 1: choose a course of your interest or go to (if you’re in Clearing your status on UCAS Account will reflect this)
  • Step 2: complete an online application form to get a provisional offer (remember that you’ll need your UCAS Personal ID number and all your exam results to hand)
  • Step 3: we’ll look at your qualifications and let you know if we are able to make you a provisional offer
  • Step 4: if we are able to make you an offer you’ll need to refer yourself to us through UCAS to accept your offer (we’ll let you know how to do this)
Who can apply through Clearing?

You can apply if you declined all your previous offers, you have an offer but changed your mind or you haven’t met the conditions of the offer you hold for another university. You can also apply to Brunel through Clearing if you have not made any applications for the 2023/24 or you’ve achieved higher grades than you expected and you now match the requirements for Brunel.

How do I add a Clearing choice on UCAS?

Check out our video guide:

How to add a clearing choice video
How to add a clearing choice video
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I have an offer but I’ve changed my mind. What should I do?

It isn’t too late to change your mind, as long as the course that you’re interested in is available in Clearing. After exploring, please contact the Admissions team to discuss your options. 

I have an offer from Brunel but want to apply for another course at Brunel. What should I do?

Browse our Clearing courses on our website and choose one or more courses you are interested in. After exploring, please contact the Admissions team and they will be able to review and amend your current offer if you're eligible. You will not need to apply to us again through Clearing.

I declined my offer from Brunel but changed my mind. What should I do?

Browse our Clearing courses on our website and choose one or more courses you are interested in. After exploring, please contact the Admissions team and they will be able to review and amend your current offer if you're eligible. You will not need to apply to us again through Clearing.

What happens after I’ve been offered a place in Clearing?
  1. You will receive email confirmation of your provisional offer from us.
  2. Refer yourself to us on your UCAS account (you do not need to wait for this email before referring yourself on UCAS Account). Under 'Add a Clearing Choice’, select Brunel B84 and the course you have been offered (please note at this stage, you will not see the provisional offer from Brunel on your UCAS). You’ll have 24 hours to refer yourself to Brunel after you receive your provisional offer email.
  3. Once you have referred yourself to Brunel we will process your application. Please bear in mind that we have lots of applications to process and we need to verify some details when we review your full UCAS application, but we try and get your place confirmed at Brunel as quickly as possible.
  4. Once we have confirmed your offer we will update UCAS and you’ll receive your formal offer email from us.
  5. You’ll now be able to apply for your accommodation.
  6. If you’re applying for Student Finance, please contact your Student Finance team to let them know of your new course details.
Can I apply to a foundation course through Clearing?

If you’re not ready for degree-level study or you don’t have the required qualifications, there are foundation programmes in almost every degree subject. 

What other options are there if I don’t match the entry criteria for the course I want to do?

First of all, take a deep breath and don’t panic! Take a look for other courses you might be interested in. Alternatively, you might be interested in one of our foundation year courses. These have lower entry requirements and when you successfully pass your foundation year you can progress to study for your degree. You can contact us to discuss your options. Make sure you have your UCAS personal ID, your email address and details of your exam results to hand.

What is Clearing Plus and how does it work?

Launched by UCAS, this service allows unplaced students (those who don’t currently hold an offer) to see courses they could be ‘matched with’ on their UCAS account. You’ll be matched based on courses you’ve applied for, your qualifications and grades and the universities that have taken your type of application. You can review your list of matched courses on your UCAS account and select the ones you’re interested in. Then the university will contact you directly. Here at Brunel we will contact any ‘matches’ by email or phone if the course you selected is open to Clearing applications. 

Can I apply through Clearing at Brunel if I have BTEC qualifications or a combination of BTEC and A-level qualifications?

Yes. We welcome students to Brunel with BTEC qualifications. To find out more about applying with BTEC qualifications please visit our BTEC information page.

I’m a mature student. Can I still apply through Clearing and what support is available for mature students at Brunel?

It’s never too late to study. Come to Brunel and you’ll be joining hundreds of other mature students who call Brunel their home. If your application is successful we’re here to help you with that transition back into education. We offer extra support to our mature students through a dedicated Widening Access Officer and dedicated teams at our Student Services, Study Support and Professional Development Centre departments. You can find out more at our information page for mature students.   

How and when can I apply for second year entry?

If you’ve successfully completed your first year at another university but feel that your current course or university is not the best for you, it is possible to request a transfer to a different course at the same or different university, subject to the availability of places.

Start by checking out our courses and choose one or more courses that you’re interested in. Please also check our Accommodation and Student Finance pages to explore your options.

You’ll need to send in copies of your current university transcripts showing your first year results. If possible, our Admissions team will issue an offer and provide advice about further steps about accepting your offer, registration and arriving to Brunel.

You can apply for second year entry through our online form. Please provide details of your current university, course and first year grades as well as your previous qualifications such as BTECs, IB or A-Levels.

Application for entry to second year for most courses is open until the start of the 2023/24 academic year in October.

I’m a parent/guardian. What can I do to help on results day? Is there anything that I can do in advance?

At Brunel, we understand that results day is stressful for parents and guardians too so we’ve put together a step-by-step guide to help you. Remember that thousands of students find their place at university through Clearing every year.

Keturah came to Brunel through Clearing. Her Mum shares her experiences of top tips for parents and guardians:

clearing advice for parents youtube video
clearing advice for parents youtube video
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I’m a teacher/careers adviser. How can I support my students during Clearing?

Clearing can be stressful for students. As a teacher or adviser, you can support your students by encouraging them to explore all their options. Download our guide which is full of useful tips and advice for you.


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