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Making the final choice

Clearing advice for international and EU students

International and EU students can apply through Clearing in the same way as home students. Read our advice on eligibility, applying and funding your university journey in the UK.

Students in university

CONTENTS

  1. What's Clearing?

  2. Can international students use Clearing?

  3. Using Clearing successfully

  4. How long is Clearing open for?

What's Clearing?

Clearing allows students who've got their results but haven't yet got a university place to find a course that suits them. You can use Clearing to find one of the thousands of unallocated places at UK universities.

Can international students use Clearing?

Yes, Clearing can be used by non-UK students. International students are eligible if they've:

  • Applied through UCAS at an earlier stage (including after 30 June)
  • Been rejected by their firm and insurance choices
  • Applied to a course before 30 June but weren't made an offer
  • Qualified academically for a firm or insurance offer but decided not to take it up
  • Paid the full multi-application fee to enter Clearing

Using Clearing successfully

Research courses before results day

To prepare for the possibility of having to use Clearing, find courses you can apply through Clearing on the UCAS website.

Find university contacts

To use Clearing, you have to contact universities by phone or email. Look for Clearing contact numbers on the UCAS website – there'll usually be a number for students calling from outside the UK.

Talk to universities or use online chat methods

Discuss your academic qualifications, English proficiency, visa status and your academic qualifications.

Consider your options

Universities can and will make informal offers over the phone. You can consider informal offers from a variety of universities and usually will have one or two days to decide which one you want to accept. Use this time to do more research.

Accept an offer

Once you've decided which university you want to go to, contact them, give them your UCAS Track ID number and password. This university will then appear on your UCAS Track as an offer you can accept. Remember, you can only enter one Clearing choice at a time, but if the university fails to confirm your place, you should pick another.

Get a student visa

Once you've accepted an offer, you'll need to obtain a visa if required. You'll need:

  • Evidence you've accepted an unconditional offer of a place on a course with a licensed student sponsor –they'll issue a reference number known as a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS), which you'll need to supply
  • An English language test certificate, if needed
  • Evidence you can afford to study and live in the UK, if needed

Visa applications and confirmation of English language tests may take time so make sure you're realistic about this. However, many countries have fast-track visa services through the UK Government, sometimes for an extra fee.

How long is Clearing open for?

Clearing is open from early July – the same day as International Baccalaureate (IB) Results Day – until mid-October.

Is there a difference for international students in Clearing?

You should aim to go through this process as quickly and early as possible as there are some differences in applying through Clearing for international students.

You may have to apply for a student visa. This can take time if there are lots of people applying at the same time.

You might have to take some tests to secure a place. This could be a language test or an alternative test. Your university may also ask to have an interview with you. You'll need to ask each university directly what they need as it'll vary depending on where you're from and the university you’re going to.

If you are taking IBs, you'll have an advantage over UK students when using Clearing. This is because most UK students don't get exam results until August.

If you still have questions about Clearing, take a look at our general Clearing guide, read answers to our FAQs or ask one of our experts.

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