A Clearing guide for Parents and Guardians

Clearing can be a stressful time for parents and guardians. You will want to ensure your child is making the right decision for their future which is why we have put together a step-by-step guide about Clearing to help relieve some of that stress.

What is Clearing?

Clearing is an opportunity for your child to gain a place at university. Usually, students use Clearing if they haven’t met the requirements of their firms or insurances choices, but it’s also for students who haven't applied to university before, but have changed their mind. Clearing opens on 5 July for students who already have their results, and 18 August for those waiting for their A-level results.

Your child will be eligible for Clearing if:

  • They submit their UCAS application after 30 June
  • They did not receive any offers (conditional or unconditional) from the universities they applied to
  • Their place is not confirmed after exam results are published
  • They've declined their firm place

If your child does not fall into any of these categories, they can still contact us, and our Clearing advisers will see how they can help.

How does it work?

During Clearing results day, when your son or daughter receives their results, they can log into their UCAS Track account, which will confirm if they have been accepted by the firm or insurance choice universities. If they don’t get their required grades, their status will show that they are in Clearing.

From then, they can start to contact universities with available places on courses that interest them. When they contact the university, they will need to have their UCAS ID number, results, and Clearing number. If they meet the course requirements, the university could make them an offer, which will show on their UCAS Track. They will need to accept this offer through UCAS to confirm their place.

Unfortunately, you cannot call on behalf of your son or daughter, as this is a breach of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

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Want to ask us a question or just talk through the clearing process? Chat online with an admissions advisor now.

Clearing top tips



It can be an emotional time for both parents and children, so it’s important to remain calm.

Support your child by understanding the Clearing process and the critical times and dates. Encourage your son or daughter to see Clearing as a contingency and an opportunity to consider their options and find a course that’s the best option for them. They can also read stories from our students who came through Clearing for reassurance.



Don't panic

We want you to help your child make the right choice!

Ensure you carefully check entry requirements and encourage your child to consider applying for a course with requirements closer to their grades. Reassure them and provide advice but don’t rush them into making a decision. After all, they will be at university for at least the next three years, so it’s important they’re happy with their choice. Making a checklist can help to make measured decisions. Some things to consider are:

  • Collect key details – make sure your son or daughter has their UCAS login details, ID number and results to hand, including their GCSEs.
  • Review their personal statement – this can help focus on their strengths and interests to find suitable courses.
  • Research universities as well as the course – does the university offer the right environment? Will they be happy and comfortable there?
  • Have pens and paper ready – when your son or daughter is talking to universities, they will receive a lot of information. Making a note of all of this information can help them process later and make an informed decision.


Stay positive

It’s important to bear in mind that not all universities and courses will have places available; you and your child will need to do some research.

You can use UCAS’s search tool to find all the courses your child can apply for. UCAS’s Clearing Plus service can also personally match your child to courses they may find interesting based on their results and university expectations.

Try not to see this as a setback. It could be a chance to discover something new that really interests them and could set your child on a different career path.

If your child is offered a place at Coventry, you will receive an email with what steps you’ll need to take next, which will include any deadlines.

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