If you are applying to a university in the UK, I am sure you will know all about the Universities and College Admissions Service, better known as UCAS, but have you heard of UCAS Extra?
What is UCAS Extra?
From late February 2021, UCAS Extra has been open and available for all undergraduate applications, and the service will stay open until July 4th 2021. The service allows undergraduate applicants to apply to more universities if they have already used up their five choices and have not been offered a place or have had all their offers declined. UCAS Extra is essentially a second chance for people who were not made an offer by any of their original five choices.
How can it help me?
Using the service means you don’t need to wait until clearing to apply to another course as you can do it now. Plus, there is no limit to how many extra places you can apply for with UCAS Extra.
You don’t even need to apply for the same type of course, meaning if you had applied to do 5 phycology courses, nothing is stopping you from applying to do a course in photography, science, or anything else! This makes the service a great option for people who have changed their mind about what or where they want to study.
However, you are not able to change your personal statement on UCAS. So if you do change your mind about what course you want to study and it is very different from your original choices, it may be worth getting in touch with the university, explain you changed your mind, and offer to send them an updated personal statement.
Plus, you can use the search tool on UCAS to check which courses still have spaces available, this will stop you wasting time applying to a course that is already full. This also means it is better to apply sooner rather than later.
If you apply to a few courses through UCAS Extra and you still don’t receive any offers, don’t panic! You can still apply to courses through clearing.
How much does it cost?
What’s even better is that this is a free service, well you would have already paid £25 to UCAS to apply to five places, so you could say it is at no additional cost.
What’s the catch?
Whilst there is no limit to how many courses you can apply to through UCAS Extra, you can only apply for one course at a time. This is to prevent students from applying to hundreds of courses for the sake of it. This means you cannot pick a first choice and an insurance choice as you would have been able to in the first round of UCAS.
Suppose you apply to a course through UCAS Extra and you don’t hear back, before cancelling your application, it is worth calling or emailing the university to check if there is an offer on the way or not.
You should usually hear back in about 21 days; then you can decide to accept the offer and follow it on Track. But make sure not to leave it too long as there will be a specific date stated in the offer, which you would need to accept by before they offer the place to someone else. Or if you choose to decline the offer, you can apply somewhere else through UCAS Extra if there is still time or wait until clearing.
If you accept an offer through UCAS Extra, you are expected to study there if you meet the offer’s requirements, which means you will not be eligible for clearing.
What is clearing?
If you want to find out more about clearing, have a look at our other article Are you stressed about clearing? Where you can find out everything you need to know about the process if UCAS Extra doesn’t work out for you.