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Uni says my offer was a clerical error - where do I stand? watch

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    (Original post by Redacted)
    Hi all,

    I'll try to keep this brief but some context is needed. In December I received and firmly accepted a conditional offer from my dream uni. It was a low offer, but the course isn't popular and I'm a mature student on an Access pathway, so I didn't think there was anything unusual about that - the uni states on all its admissions blurb that mature applicants are considered on a case by case basis/individually appraised according to experience/etc. The only condition stipulated in the offer was that I achieve 28 Access credits at Merit (I've achieved Distinctions in every unit so far, if that's relevant at all).

    However, I've just received an email from the uni stating that there was a clerical error on their part and that the offer should also have stipulated GCSE Maths at Grade 5, as they normally ask that of all applicants. I don't currently have a Grade 5 and am retaking Maths alongside Access, but the point is that it wasn't stated in my offer conditions. The uni has also stated (generously, it must be said) that as I've already firmly accepted the offer, they can't alter it 'without my permission' and that it's therefore up to me whether they amend it or not. But I really need to know where I stand. Are applicants generally required only to fulfill the explicit conditions of their accepted offer? Can the uni withdraw the offer altogether if I say I don't want them to amend it? Or are they likely to reject me come results day even if I meet my conditions?

    TL;DR: Conditional offer firmly accepted, now uni wants to change conditions due to 'clerical error'.
    Dear Admissions Team

    Thank you very much for your letter/email of [date] explaining the error made in my offer. [University] was my standout first choice of University and I was delighted to receive your offer. I have worked very hard to achieve my grades to date and this course will provide an outstanding foundation for my career aspirations.

    I am currently consistently over achieving of the directly relevant academic preparation on my Access course. I fully understand the requirement for a balanced basic education, and I am committed to doing the very best I can in my upcoming Maths exams, where I am current predicted to exceed a Grade 5. However, having agreed an offer, I am not prepared to risk my place over a Maths grade when my relevant Access grades are far exceeding the course requirements. Therefore, I cannot and do not give permission for you to change our established agreement on my offer conditions.

    Kind regards
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    (Original post by Mother2)
    I work in a college for adults and it’s very frustrating for Access students to have these arbitrary blanket requirements. Even for 18 year olds I can’t see how Maths is needed for a language degree but it puts up some many barriers for adult returners who already have a lot to contend with.

    Just take up the place and enjoy your degree.
    Frustrating is definitely the word. And unfortunately my experience as an Access student has been that there's almost no useful guidance out there - even filling out UCAS is tricky if one isn't the standard 18 year old school-leaver.

    I hope I won't lose my place over this. I can't help feeling I've somehow blotted my copybook ... but thank you, I'm keeping my fingers crossed that I'll be able to.
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    (Original post by threeportdrift)
    Dear Admissions Team

    Thank you very much for your letter/email of [date] explaining the error made in my offer. [University] was my standout first choice of University and I was delighted to receive your offer. I have worked very hard to achieve my grades to date and this course will provide an outstanding foundation for my career aspirations.

    I am currently consistently over achieving of the directly relevant academic preparation on my Access course. I fully understand the requirement for a balanced basic education, and I am committed to doing the very best I can in my upcoming Maths exams, where I am current predicted to exceed a Grade 5. However, having agreed an offer, I am not prepared to risk my place over a Maths grade when my relevant Access grades are far exceeding the course requirements. Therefore, I cannot and do not give permission for you to change our established agreement on my offer conditions.

    Kind regards
    I've essentially said exactly this in my reply. Just waiting for a response from them now. Maybe I'm stressing about it more than I should be - I just don't want them to think I'm trouble.

    Thanks for your input!
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    (Original post by Redacted)
    I've essentially said exactly this in my reply. Just waiting for a response from them now. Maybe I'm stressing about it more than I should be - I just don't want them to think I'm trouble.

    Thanks for your input!
    You won't be marked down for this. There is someone in trouble internally for not following the agreed procedure, but it isn't personal about you, and as you said, you exceed the 'relevant' academic grade and you'll try hard with the Maths, and that's fine. It's quite possible you aren't the only one anyway!
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    (Original post by Redacted)
    Which Uni is it? Based on the experiences of other students at my FE college it seems a few of them are very slow at communicating with applicants. I'm sure you'll hear from them soon enough - they made you an offer, after all, so they want you.

    It's very confusing trying to work out what exactly the situation is with a firmed offer. Some people say it constitutes a contract, some say not, and the official guidance from UCAS is about as much use as a chocolate teapot unfortunately. I've got a horrible sinking feeling that I won't be going anywhere in September no matter how good my results are. :|
    I'd say to a degree yes but they also cover themselves by offering more places then what will be available. I'd say there's no agreement until a financial transaction has been made.

    I'm sure you will
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    (Original post by Redacted)
    Well, I've replied to the email saying I'd like to retain the offer as it stands but that I'm aiming to get 5 anyway. Honestly I'm expecting them to tell me they were only being courteous and that they're changing it/withdrawing it. Still, it can't hurt to try.

    Thanks for the positive vibes!
    They won't (I used to work at a university) but if they do then just point out that having followed up on the offer to clarify the freedom it affords you and with you having accepted those terms, it isn't reasonable for them to withdraw it and you could challenge that decision.

    But it absolutely won't come to that - your offer is good as it stands.
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    (Original post by Redacted)
    Which Uni is it? Based on the experiences of other students at my FE college it seems a few of them are very slow at communicating with applicants. I'm sure you'll hear from them soon enough - they made you an offer, after all, so they want you.

    It's very confusing trying to work out what exactly the situation is with a firmed offer. Some people say it constitutes a contract, some say not, and the official guidance from UCAS is about as much use as a chocolate teapot unfortunately. I've got a horrible sinking feeling that I won't be going anywhere in September no matter how good my results are. :|
    In a way they are but they are also covering themselves by giving more offers than there are places available. From what I've heard I don't think a contract is established until there's been a financial transaction.

    I'm sure you will
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    (Original post by Anagogic)
    In a way they are but they are also covering themselves by giving me offers than there are places available. From what I've heard I don't a contract is established until there's been a financial transaction.

    I'm sure you will
    A contract doesn't require a financial transaction.

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    (Original post by Doonesbury)
    A contract doesn't require a financial transaction.

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    Ah okay, at what point would a contract be established between a University and applicant then?
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    (Original post by Anagogic)
    Ah okay, at what point would a contract be established between a University and applicant then?
    When you accept the offer.
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    (Original post by Doonesbury)
    When you accept the offer.
    What if more people than expected meet the terms of their offer?
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    (Original post by Anagogic)
    What if more people than expected meet the terms of their offer?
    That becomes the university's problem. They are pretty good at managing resourcing decisions like that.
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    (Original post by Anagogic)
    What if more people than expected meet the terms of their offer?
    Then they don't go into Clearing that year.
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    (Original post by Anagogic)
    What if more people than expected meet the terms of their offer?
    Cha ching! They manage to struggle through. 10 extra students easily covers an extra member of teaching staff.
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    (Original post by threeportdrift)
    You won't be marked down for this. There is someone in trouble internally for not following the agreed procedure, but it isn't personal about you, and as you said, you exceed the 'relevant' academic grade and you'll try hard with the Maths, and that's fine. It's quite possible you aren't the only one anyway!
    I did wonder if maybe they'd discovered a crop of people they'd given slightly faulty offers to. Good point!
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    (Original post by Johnathan94)
    They won't (I used to work at a university) but if they do then just point out that having followed up on the offer to clarify the freedom it affords you and with you having accepted those terms, it isn't reasonable for them to withdraw it and you could challenge that decision.

    But it absolutely won't come to that - your offer is good as it stands.
    Thanks, I hope it all works out. I definitely feel a bit better about it now, anyway
 
 
 

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