How to apply for university

This section will guide you through how to apply to university. It covers everything you need to know when applying, including important UCAS deadlines, key things to include in your personal statement, and how to prepare for an interview.

Key application dates

Here are all the key dates you need to know for submitting your university application.

  • 15 October 2020
    • Deadline for Oxbridge or most course in medicine, dentistry and veterinary medicine
  • 15 January 2021
    • Deadline for all UCAS undergraduate courses
  • 25 February 2021
    • Extra opens
  • 5 May 2021
    • If you receive all decisions by 31 March you must reply to your offers by this date
  • 5 July 2021
    • Clearing opens
  • 19 August 2021
    • Adjustment opens
  • 31 August 2021
    • Adjustment ends
  • 21 September 2021
    • Final date for 2021 entry applications

Visit UCAS for their guidance on 2020 entry and beyond in light of Covid-19.

Interview preparation

For some courses you may be required to attend an interview.

How will I receive an interview offer? In the post or online on UCAS track
How do I accept the invitation? Online on UCAS track click accept, decline or request an alternative date.

Get practising with All About Careers sample questions and AccessHE mock interview practice:

All about Careers
AccessHE Mock Interview Practice

Creative Subjects

If you are considering applying for a creative course but you’re not sure where to start, have a read of AccessHE’s Creative Apply Guide. Created in partnership with the UK Arts and Designs Institutions Association, this comprehensive guide provides advice on different creative courses and pathways, advice on how to apply and the important deadline dates for different disciplines.

AccessHE Creative Apply Guide

Are you considering a Higher or Degree Apprenticeship? See below for advice on where to find opportunities and how to apply.

Higher and Degree Apprenticeships

Degree apprenticeships are a great way to earn while you learn and gain practical skills while obtaining a degree. The application process is slightly different to UCAS, therefore you will need to keep an eye out for when degree apprenticeship opportunities are advertised.

How do I apply?

The application process depends on what programme you are applying for, but recruitment is usually led by the employer as a degree apprenticeship is essentially a job.

However, although in most cases the employer is responsible for the apprentice, the candidates must meet the requirements of the university. Therefore it is always best to check the individual requirements for each programme.

Office for Students provide the latest guidance on where to find the latest opportunities.

More resources

Application support for care leavers
UCAS page on support for care leavers

Application support for carers
UCAS page on personal statement support for carers

Application support for disabled students
UCAS page on applying to university if you are disabled, have learning difficulties or a mental health condition