Applying For University

Studying at our Sixth Form centre will give you opportunities to go anywhere you want – whether that’s university, a job or an apprenticeship. If you think university could be for you, take a look at our frequently asked questions and advice pages.

You can also read the following pages:

What is UCAS?

  • Universities and Colleges Admissions Service
  • Online system and application form

Why Apply?

  • Greater opportunities
  • Potentially higher earnings
  • Career requirements
  • Hedge your bets!

Research Universities

  • Courses – how many/how much?
  • Typical offers
  • Location (home or away, lively or not)
  • Bursaries
  • Open days
  • Make informed choices

The Application

Online Sections:

  • Personal details
  • Education
  • Courses
  • Personal statement
  • Reference – subject teachers


Oxbridge/Medicine/Veterinary Science – 15th October

All other courses – 15th January

Ask your Parents to Help!

  • Read early drafts of personal statements
  • Make a note of the UCAS applicant number
  • Ensure applications are sent early
  • Avoid booking a holiday for results week

Taking a Gap Year

  • Students should have firm plans as to how they will use this year
  • Apply to UCAS in Year 13 even if you are taking a gap year


  • Loans for fees
  • Loans for maintenance
  • Grants
  • Bursaries

Help is available!

Extra-Curricular Activities

Suggestions for extra-curricular activities and the qualities they can demonstrate. Don’t hesitate to mix and match

  • Member of school/local/district sports team (shows team work, discipline etc.)
  • Part-time job at local supermarket/newsagent (ability to manage own money, work with the public, team work etc.)
  • Helping with activities for younger students/children/at a youth club (responsibility, maturity, learning about how to manage/teach young people)
  • Roles in school drama/music productions/choir
  • Membership of local sports group/Scout group/St John’s/Duke of Edinburgh etc. (team work, supporting others, learn from criticism, good contributor to school/community life, leader, goal orientated, all rounder etc.)
  • Awarded subject/other prize (good at what the prize was for)
  • Organised fundraising (organisational skills, people management, awareness of social issues)
  • Write games/applications/write for local or school newsletter/paper (ICT skills, innovative thinker, programming skills)
  • Sixth Form Committee/school council (leadership, commitment, social awareness etc.)
  • Set up a website (ICT skills, innovative thinker, programming skills, computer competence)
  • Volunteer at a residential care home for the elderly/disabled (social responsibility, concern for others, insight into career)
  • Foreign travel (broadened horizons, gave insight into other cultures, helped with languages)
  • Interest in film/music/art (relaxation, creative side, interest in cutting edge culture)
  • Socialising with my friends (just don’t go there)

Understand the Commonly Used Words and Phrases

Below is a list of commonly used words and phrases, together with a summary of their meanings.

  • Apply: the online application system for applying for higher education courses. Apply and its supporting information can be accessed here.
  • Clearing: a system used towards the end of the academic cycle. If you have not secured a place, it enables you to apply for course vacancies.
  • Conditional offer: an offer made by a university or college, whereby you must fulfil certain criteria before you can be accepted on the relevant course.
  • Confirmation: when conditional offers that you have accepted become unconditional or are declined. Confirmation is dependent on your qualification/exam results.
  • Deferral: holding an offer until the following year.
  • Entry Profiles: comprehensive information about individual courses and institutions, including statistics and entry requirements. Entry Profiles are found on Course Search.
  • Extra: the opportunity to apply for another course if you have used all five choices and not secured a place.
  • Firm offer: the offer that you have accepted as your first choice.
  • Institution: a university or college offering higher education courses.
  • Insurance offer: the offer that you have accepted as your second choice, in case you do not meet the requirements for your firm offer.
  • Personal ID: a 10-digit individual number assigned to you when you register to use Apply. It is printed on every letter we send you and is displayed in the format 123-456-7890. You will be asked to provide this number if you contact our Customer Service Unit.
  • Point of entry: your year of entry to the course, for example, 2 refers to the second year of the course.
  • Route A: the application system used for all UCAS applications except for Route B art and design courses (see below).
  • Route B: a sequential application system for specific art and design courses, where you can choose up to three courses and the order in which they are sent to your chosen institutions.