Only just back from Christmas holidays and college application is a pressing concern for many Leaving Cert students. The most imminent deadline is for those wishing to apply for college in the UK. The UCAS deadline is 15th January. Here is a quick reminder of what you will need to get in order to complete your application.
Register with UCAS
This is a quick process. UCAS will look for some personal details from you. You can make an individual application or you can apply through your school. If you want to apply through your school you will need the school buzzword. Your guidance counsellor will be able to advise you of this.
Make your college choices
You can apply for up to five courses. With over 36,000 courses offered from over 300 colleges and universities across the UK choosing your courses can be quite intimidating, With so much choice, where do you even start. Subject and location are often good places to begin your course search. UCAS provide lots of advice on how to choose a course. Click here for more information.
Get a Reference
If you haven’t asked for a reference yet then ask someone today! Writing a reference can be very time consuming so you need to give your referee plenty of time to put one together for you. Ask someone who knows you well and has a positive impression of you. Suitable candidates for the job include a teacher, year head, principal/deputy principal or the leader of a club you are a member of, e.g. debating, sport, music, drama. If you have a part time job you could ask your employer. Whomever you ask, show gratitude. It is a big deal for someone to put a reference together for you so show them that you appreciate their time and effort.
If you have applied through your school, the guidance counsellor will consult with your teachers and input your predicted grades. These grades need to be realistic assumptions on how you would perform in the Leaving Cert on a good day. They give the colleges/universities an indication of what they can expect you to achieve and they allow colleges/universities to make a decision whether to offer you a place or not. Places offered are usually done so on a conditional basis, dependent on the actual results you achieve. If you make an individual application, your referee will have to inform UCAS of your predicted grades.
Achieving the entry requirements is only the first hurdle in your application. Your real selling point is your Personal Statement. It cannot be over emphasised how vital this document is in securing a place in college/university. There are ample videos and guidelines available on UCAS to assist you in writing your personal statement. Click here to access them. Spend time on this piece. Draft and redraft until you are happy with the final version. Be original and authentic. Describe why you want to do this course and back up any claims you make with evidence.
Application Form and Fee
Complete your application form. Most of the form is pretty straight-forward. Most questions are accompanied by a question mark icon that will clarify the question and assist you in answering it. If you have any further queries don’t hesitate to contact UCAS. You can call their helpline +44 330 3330 230 or contact them through Facebook (facebook.com/ucasonline) or Twitter @ucas_online. UCAS do not have an email address.
The application fee for undergraduate students in £18 if you wish to apply for one course or £24 if you wish to apply for more than one course (max 5 courses).
The CareersPortal Team