Results and Clearing: Your questions answered

Receiving your results and securing your place at university may seem like a daunting process. Here we answer some of the common questions that you might have.

How can I be best prepared for results day?
  • Make sure you're able to access UCAS Track online so that you can view the decision made on your application
  • Make sure you have the contact details for the universities that are your Firm and Insurance choices
  • If you want to look for a place in Clearing or Adjustment, then you can use both the UCAS website and university websites to see if there are any vacancies in the subjects you're interested in. Note down the advertised Clearing/Adjustment telephone numbers for the universities which are offering these vacancies.
What's the best way for me to find out whether I've been accepted?

The best way for you to find out whether you've been accepted by your chosen university is to use UCAS Track.

UCAS Track is 'frozen' during the week before the release of A Level results. It will reopen at around 8am on Thursday 15 August and you'll be able to log in to view university decisions.

Most universities will also have a helpline for students who have any questions or concerns, but you should be prepared for it to be difficult to get through on the phone as many applicants will be contacting each university.

The University of Sheffield helpline will be open from 7:30am on Thursday 15 August. Our helpline number is 0114 222 8015 from inside the UK, +44 114 222 8015 from outside the UK.

What should I do if I haven't achieved the grades required by my chosen university?

You should check UCAS Track for your chosen university's decision. In some cases, universities may accept a student who's achieved slightly lower grades than originally required.

UCAS Track should show the decision of both the Firm and Insurance universities. If you've not been accepted by your Firm university, you should look for the decision of your Insurance choice.

If you've been unsuccessful at both your Firm and Insurance universities, there's the option of looking for a place at another university through Clearing (see below for more information about Clearing).

What happens if a result is delayed, or I want to get a priority remark?

Universities are obliged to accept any Firm applicant who meets the conditions of their offer and whose results are confirmed by 31 August.

If a result is likely to be delayed until after 31 August, you should contact your chosen university to ask whether this deadline can be extended. In some cases, universities won't be able to accept results after this date, although it may still be possible for a university to arrange for an Unconditional offer to be deferred to next year.

If I achieve better than expected results, what are my options?
  • If you're happy with your chosen university, stick with it
  • If you're interested in looking at other universities and you've achieved higher grades than were required for your Firm offer, then you can register for Adjustment. Adjustment allows you to hold on to your Firm choice for five days whilst looking at other university options.

If you want to upgrade to the University of Sheffield, you can Advance Register your interest in a place with us from 5 July.

If I decide that I don't want to go to my Firm choice university, but haven't achieved better than expected results, what are my options?

If you're interested in other universities and you haven't achieved higher grades than were required in your Firm offer, then you can look at other university options in Clearing.

However, you won't be able to formally arrange a place at another university until you've withdrawn from your current Firm choice by asking them to release you into Clearing. Alternatively, you can release yourself into Clearing by clicking the 'Decline my place' button on your UCAS Track page.

You should never do this until you've spoken to the university you'd like to go to and are certain you'll be able to secure a place there.

If I get into my Firm choice university, but decide I'd rather go to my Insurance choice, what are my options?

Once you've been accepted at your Firm choice university, the Insurance choice is no longer valid, even if it shows on UCAS Track that you're Unconditional there – status UI. This is the case even if you didn't get the grades required for your Firm choice, but were accepted anyway. The Firm choice university can only release you into Clearing, it can't release you to your Insurance choice.

If you'd prefer to go to your Insurance choice, you should contact the Insurance university to see if you can be accepted. If the Insurance university agrees to accept you, you should then contact your Firm choice and ask to be released into Clearing, or release yourself by clicking the 'Decline my place' button on your UCAS Track page. Once you've been released into Clearing, you'll be able to formally re-apply to the Insurance choice via Clearing.

Remember that the Insurance choice is under no obligation to take a student who's Firm at another university, so you should make sure you'll be accepted before getting released from your Firm choice. You may also wish to check with your Insurance choice whether any guarantees about accommodation would still apply to you as a Clearing applicant.

How can I find out what vacancies are available through Adjustment and Clearing?

The UCAS website and university websites will provide the best listings of what vacancies are available through Clearing and Adjustment. Many universities will also have a Clearing and Adjustment helpline. If you're interested in a vacancy or a particular university, you should contact that university directly.

Vacancies at the University of Sheffield will be posted on our website on the morning of Thursday 15 August, where you'll also be able to apply using our online form.

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Latest Results and Clearing information

We'll publish information at www.sheffield.ac.uk/clearing in the run up to Results and Clearing. Alongside the information on these webpages, our helpline will be open from 7:30am on Thursday 15 August:

0114 222 8015 from inside the UK

+44 114 222 8015 from outside the UK