Coventry University Group Clearing expert Rob McGowan shares his five top tips for students
Thursday 05 August 2021
A university Clearing expert advises applicants to learn from their COVID-19 teaching experiences when selecting a university.
As Clearing hotlines gear up for floods of calls as A-Level and BTEC results are received, Rob McGowan - Coventry University Group Director of UK Student Recruitment and Admissions - shares his top tips to help applicants navigate the process at what is potentially a very stressful time.
Learn from your COVID-19 teaching experience
The world of work and university has changed, so do your research and see how a university is reflecting that and preparing you for the new age of working going forward.
Location, reputation, and degree modules should all factor into your decision, but you also need to consider the quality of teaching and learning.
Think about your last year of studying during the COVID-19 pandemic and what you need from a learning and teaching perspective to thrive.
You might have had a poor experience with digital learning or feel less prepared for the academic challenges and independence that university brings. So, find out what a university is doing to help students around digital fluency and literacy and how they support their students.
Look at how universities innovated during the pandemic, if they have gold standard teaching and learning, research their digital engagement and content to see if it will be the right fit to help you learn.
The pandemic might have changed your career goals. You now might want to join the NHS, fight for social justice or explore a new passion for reading, writing or art.
Whatever inspires you, we are here to help you dream big. It is never too late to change your mind.
If you are having second thoughts about the course and university you chose initially or are worried about your results, start having a look to see what’s out there. A back-up plan will give you some much-needed peace of mind.
Go to a Clearing open day
For some people, accepting a place through Clearing can be a bit of a stab in the dark. Some applicants end up choosing a university and city they do not know anything about.
Whether it is campus-based, city-based or both, you want to try to get a feel for a university before accepting an offer.
That’s why we recommend attending a virtual or in-person Clearing open day so you can learn about your new home away from home, experience the facilities, explore the buildings, learn more about the courses and chat to friendly staff and students.
Take a virtual tour with us or book one of our in-person or virtual Open Days.
It is useful to create a shortlist with contact details for universities you know you’re interested in in advance, so you are not searching on the day.
Make sure you have your UCAS ID, results and Clearing number when making those all-important phone calls. You should also be ready to talk about yourself and sell your skills.
Have a copy of your personal statement to hand to remind yourself how good you are and use it to explain why the admissions team should make you the offer you want.
Ask for advice
Even after all your research, you still might have questions. So why not ask the experts?
We have specially trained admissions staff who are available before, on and after results day to answer your questions and support you through the process.
Clearing applicants can also get expert advice about the course, subject area, next steps and career opportunities by speaking to our academic staff.
To talk to one of our team, call: 02476 888 888 or, get in touch via Live Chat.