26 August 2020

Clinical courses: 2020 entry and deferrals

Health Sciences School Policy for Selecting Students for Deferral to 2021 Entry

Samuel Fox House from the outside.

Each year, and in common with other universities, we make more offers for entry to our clinical degree programme than there are places.  This is because we know that not everyone will accept their offer, and not all of those who do accept their offer will meet the offer conditions.

On 17th August 2020 the Secretary of State for Education announced that students would be awarded the higher of their algorithm-calculated grades or centre assessment grades.

Our clinical programmes have a finite capacity, due to the number of students that can be accommodated in face-to-face teaching, and the number of clinical placements available for our students.  Admitting more students than we have places for could have a detrimental impact on the educational experience of the entire cohort. We also need to consider the safety of our students when managing blended learning and social-distancing as a result of COVID-19.

The Health Sciences School will endeavour to be as flexible as the situation allows, in order to minimize disadvantage to offer holders caused by these exceptional and unprecedented circumstances.  This statement sets out the process that the Health Sciences School will take in determining which students will be accepted for entry in 2020 and which may be asked to defer their entry.

Firm offer holders

All Firm offer holders who have been notified that they have a place on one of our programmes via UCAS by 21st September 2020 will enter in 2020 unless they had requested to defer their entry to 2021, and unless they request to defer their entry to 2021 by 31st August 2020.

Choosing to defer to 2021 entry

If any applicants have already indicated that they would like to defer their entry to 2021 then we have deferred the entry of these offer holders.

We recognise that there may now be other offer holders who would prefer to defer their entry to 2021, either to suit their own circumstances or to make it easier for someone for whom deferral would be difficult to attend this year.  If you would like to defer your entry to 2021, please let us know as soon as possible, and no later than 31st August 2020, by emailing study@sheffield.ac.uk, quoting your UCAS ID number.

Further information on how students will be prioritized for entry into the 2020 cohort is outlined below.

Insurance offer holders

Those who had originally accepted our offer as their Insurance choice who now meet the conditions of their Firm offer choice as a result of CAGs may be invited to move back to their original Firm choice, and are welcome to do so.

Where a student holds an Insurance offer with us, still does not meet the conditions of their Firm choice but now meets the conditions of our offer as a result of CAGs, or now prefers to remain with Sheffield, we will treat them as set out for Firm offer holders, below.

Requiring deferrals to 2021 for some applicants

In the event that there are more Firm offer holders who now meet the conditions of their offer as a result of CAGs than can be admitted to our programmes in 2020, we will prioritise offer holders as follows to determine who is invited to enter in 2020 and who is requested to defer entry to 2021.  We will adopt this approach in order to minimize, if possible, the effects on those from widening participation and disadvantaged backgrounds.

  1. Offer holders from Widening Participation backgrounds who have completed either the Realising Opportunities programme.
  • First priority will be given to these offer holders.
  • If there are more offer holders in this group than places available, a range of factors will be considered according to their performance at our admissions interview to determine who is invited to enter in 2020 and who is asked to defer entry to 2021. If required, then applicants will be considered by A Level attainment.
  • In the event that these factors need to be applied to this group, all remaining offer holders now meeting their Firm offer conditions as a result of CAGs will be asked to defer their entry to 2021.
  1. Offer holders from Widening Participation backgrounds who meet the Access+ criteria (i.e. those who are in POLAR 3 or POLAR 4 Quintile 1, had young carer status or who had been in local authority care)
  • If there are places available after those in group 1, above, have been considered, priority will next be given to this group of offer holders.
  • If there are more offer holders in this group than places available, a range of factors will be considered according to their performance at our admissions interview to determine who is invited to enter in 2020 and who is asked to defer entry to 2021. If required, then applicants will be considered by A Level attainment.
  • In the event that these factors need to be applied to this group, all remaining offer holders now meeting their Firm offer conditions as a result of CAGs will be asked to defer their entry to 2021.
  1. Offer holders who have already repeated a year of their A Level (or equivalent) education because they have taken resits.
  • If there are places available after those in groups 1 and 2, above, have been considered, priority will next be given to this group of offer holders.
  • If there are more offer holders in this group than places available, a range of factors will be considered according to their performance at our admissions interview to determine who is invited to enter in 2020 and who is asked to defer entry to 2021. If required, then applicants will be considered by A Level attainment.
  • In the event that these factors need to be applied to this group, all remaining offer holders now meeting their Firm offer conditions as a result of CAGs will be asked to defer their entry to 2021.
  1. All remaining Firm offer holders
  • If there are places available after those in groups 1 -3, above, have been considered, priority will next be given to this group of offer holders.
  • If there are more offer holders in this group than places available, a range of factors will be considered according to their performance at our admissions interview to determine who is invited to enter in 2020 and who is asked to defer entry to 2021. If required, then applicants will be considered by A Level attainment.
  • In the event that these factors need to be applied to this group, all remaining offer holders now meeting their Firm offer conditions as a result of CAGs will be asked to defer their entry to 2021.

Appeals and Autumn Examinations

Where an offer holder still does not meet the conditions of their offer once CAGs have been received, but subsequently meets the conditions of their offer as a result of an appeal by 7th September 2020, we will honour the offer but will ask the offer holder to defer their entry to 2021.

Where a Firm or Insurance offer holder has not met the conditions of their offer by 7th September, we will roll over the offer to the 2021 admissions cycle provided they are not enrolled on a degree programme on 15th October 2020.  Such offer holders may need to apply through UCAS but will not be required to attend a further interview. This will give these people the opportunity to fulfil the conditions of their offer either through appeal (received after 7th September) or by taking the Autumn 2020 A Level examinations.  The Autumn 2020 examinations will not be considered to be resits.

We will consider the Summer 2021 A Level examinations to be resits, whether the offer holder has taken the Autumn 2020 examinations or not.  We accept a first resit in each A Level, if necessary, without need for consideration of Disrupted Studies.  For those offer holders for whom the 2020 examinations were their first resits, we will consider the circumstances surrounding A Levels in 2020 to be sufficient disrupted studies to consider the Summer 2021 examinations taken as a re-resit.