Supporting Applicants in Clearing

This guide is written to help teachers advise students who have applied to Lancaster for 2017 entry or who are supporting students applying to Lancaster through the clearing process.

Preparing for A level results day:

UCAS Track

  • Check the applicant has access to their track account.
  • Check the applicant’s contact information is correct e.g. an email address that will be working through all of August and September for university communications.
  • Applicants should provide UCAS with a nominated person – a parent or teacher who will be available on results day to contact their chosen universities, if required. This person can do everything, except for withdrawing an application.
  • Embargo Periods – Check dates UCAS Track will be unavailable. While UCAS track is closed we are unable to make any amendments.

General preparation      

  • Ensure the applicant will be able to contact universities on results day - make sure you can ring universities if required.
  • Applicants should have access to a phone and the internet on results day. It is usually best to contact universities by telephone initially for a quicker response during the results period.
  • Make sure the applicant has their UCAS ID to hand; it is required when talking to universities as one form of identification.

On A level results day:

Ask the applicant to log onto UCAS Track and see if a decision appears. Any of the following could be displayed so make sure applicants know what each one means

  • UF – Unconditional Firm – congratulations their place is secure at this university.
  • UI – Unconditional Insurance - confirmed at your insurance choice university –place is secure but will only be actioned if their ‘firm’ choice institution does not accept them.
  • CF – Conditional Firm - no decision has been made yet. Call the university to see if they need more information from you e.g. some of their results may not have been provided by UCAS and they need to give them to the university.
  • CI – Conditional Insurance - no decision has been made yet. If their firm choice has not changed to unconditional, they need to call the insurance university to see if they need more information from them.
  • R – Unsuccessful at this university choice. Applicants should check their alternative (firm/insurance). If both read R unfortunately they haven’t been successful and they are now in Clearing.
  • UCC – Unconditional Changed Course – they have been accepted at this university but on a different course than the one they had applied for. They have 5 days to decide whether or not to accept this new course. If the student does not accept the place before the deadline they will lose their place at that university.*

 *Unconditional Changed Course offer- For example an applicant applies to and receives a conditional offer for a study abroad course with the conditions of A*AA, but achieves the grades of ABB. The university may still want the applicant at the university, so therefore offers them a place on an alternative course for which they do meet the requirements. The applicant is required to reconfirm their wish to accept this course. They are under no obligation to accept the course and can decline this change of course offer, leading them to be either accepted at their insurance choice or enter clearing. Deadlines may vary depending on each application status. UCAS will provide advice and letters on UCAS track explaining the situation to the applicant in more detail. 


Keep in mind:

  • A university may still accept an applicant even if they haven’t met the exact conditions of their offer.
  • If the applicant is opting for a remark they should ring the university and let them know there is a remark to come. Remember we will only honour the original offer if the required grade is provided and verified by 31st August 2017.
  • If applicants want to change the year of entry, defer to 2018 entry or revert to 2017 entry, they should ring the university and ask if it is possible as it is not always guaranteed.
  • If there are outstanding results that form part of the conditional offer, such as GCSEs, applicants should send the results certificate to results@lancaster.ac.uk as soon as possible. No decision will be made until all aspects of the offer have been met.

If the results are not available before the 31st August 2017 applicants should inform the university as soon as possible. We will do our best to extend the deadline where possible.

  • The University cannot confirm the qualification grades achieved or an applicant’s status at another university. For any questions or queries regarding an offer or status please contact that university directly on their Clearing and Adjustment hotline number.

Some universities will have a specific Schools hotline for teachers to ring.

For Lancaster enquires please use: 01524 595208

This number is not for applicants and their parents; please do not pass this number to them.


In the days after a place has been confirmed:

  • Applicants should check for communication from the university they have secured a place at – this could be email, UCAS Track or by post – and follow the instructions / suggestions throughout the next few weeks to ensure accommodation etc is sorted in time for their arrival.
  • If waiting for a remark – we will often honour the offer given as long as the remark grade meets our requirements and is provided to the university by 31st August 2017. Applicants should email a scanned copy of their results certificate to results@lancaster.ac.uk with their UCAS ID in the subject title.
  • If waiting for a GCSE grade – applicants should send a copy of their results certificate to results@lancaster.ac.uk with their UCAS ID in the subject title. We will then check it meets their offer conditions.
  • If an applicant has a confirmed offer of a place at university but would like to go elsewhere, they can do this via Clearing.

This information is for teachers only.