Kingston University says…

Be prepared and keep your options open – Kingston University admissions expert shares top tips for Clearing ahead of A-level results day

As A-level students count down to receiving their much-anticipated exam results on 18 August, Kingston University is gearing up for hundreds of calls from Clearing applicants eager to snap up one of the final places on its degree programmes.

The University’s admissions manager Ed Beales is urging anyone considering calling its hotline to do their research ahead of the big day and keep an open mind on what degree programme they might choose. “I’d advise all callers to do as much research as possible on courses they might be interested in before receiving their results and try not to get focused on just one particular option,” Mr Beales advised. “On A-level results day, potential applicants should make sure they’re ready to phone the Clearing hotline early as we anticipate lines will get busy very quickly. It’s also important to bear in mind that some courses may already be full, so considering different possibilities before making the call is definitely something we’d encourage.”

Students calling Kingston University’s Clearing hotline will include applicants in a variety of different situations. Some will be returning from a gap year, others will be coming back to education as a mature student, while some may have narrowly missed out on their expected grades or have changed their mind about the subject they want to study.

Every call would be handled sensitively by the hotline operators who are specially trained to help callers through the process, Mr Beales said. “There’s sometimes been a perception that Clearing is for students who don’t get their expected grades. But, increasingly, it’s a shop window for people who have changed their minds, who might want to stay closer to home or move away to get a different life experience while they study. If potential applicants’ circumstances have changed, Clearing can be an invaluable opportunity to see what degree programmes are still available out there.”

Throughout A-level results day on Thursday 18 August, Kingston University will have a dedicated team of more than 100 hotline operators taking calls from hopeful students. They will include course leaders, lecturers and current students, who will guide applicants through the Clearing process step by step, putting them at ease and answering all their questions.

The key advice to students is to keep calm and focus on getting the best outcome possible, Mr Beales said. “If you haven’t quite got the grades you were expecting, don’t panic. There are always options available ¬– it’s just a case of each caller being open to working through what’s on offer and considering what’s best for them as an individual,” he said.

With a high volume of calls expected, the University’s hotline is this year extending its opening hours. Operators will be taking calls into the evenings during the first few days of the operation, while a special Clearing Open Day on Saturday 20 August will provide potential students with chance to explore the University’s campuses in south west London for themselves.

Before then, Kingston University is advising students to follow its top tips for Clearing to make sure they have all the necessary preparations in place ahead of the big day. They should have their UCAS identification, if they have one, with them and full details of qualifications, including subjects, grades, dates they were obtained and exam boards before calling the hotline. They should also note down any questions they might have for the hotline operator, including finding out more about module choices, study abroad opportunities, scholarships and accommodation.

When the new academic year gets under way, a programme of University and course-related induction sessions will be held as part of Welcome Week, covering essential information such as health and wellbeing and technology support. Before enrolling, all new students will also be able to take part in the University’s Head Start online programme, set up to give them an insight into what undergraduate life is like and how to settle in more easily.