The Student Room Group

How to make your firm choice?

Applying to five different courses through UCAS is a great way to cover your bases regardless of the grades/offers you get - but if you do end up with multiple offers, it can be tough to decide which ones are going to be your firm and insurance choices. At this point in the year, you might have already heard back from some of your universities and received one or two offers so here’s three top tips on what to consider before making your decision! :smile:

1. Attend Offer-Holder/Open Days!
If you’re able to, attending an in-person offer-holder or open day is a great way to check out the vibe of your university town/city, as well as giving you the opportunity to talk to any current students or lecturers. If you can’t attend in-person especially if you live abroad make sure to keep an eye out for any online webinars/virtual tours which can give you a better idea of the accommodation and learning facilities available.

2. Weigh up your costs!
Whilst in an ideal world, cost wouldn’t be a factor in deciding where to study, it’s important to be realistic. UK undergraduate tuition fees tend to be fairly standard across the board, but living costs can vary from area to area: make sure to check out each of your universities’ budgeting/student financial advice pages on their website to gather a rough idea of how much you would be looking to spend on rent/food/transport every month or so.

3. Consider the conditions of your offers.
If you’ve received a conditional offer, it’s important to consider whether or not you think you’d actually be able to meet those conditions for example, the grade requirements may a bit higher than you initially expected and you might be unsure if you can achieve those grades on exam day.

On the other hand, if you’ve received an unconditional offer, you won’t have to worry about this. Regardless, you’ll still likely have to sit your exams, and if you would genuinely prefer to attend a university which has offered you a higher requirement but conditional place, it’s important to think through your potential performance on exam day. An unconditional safety net can be nice, but not at the expense of turning down an offer from a university you would have preferred to attend.

No matter what your situation, choosing which university is going to be your firm choice can be difficult. And whilst it is a big decision, I’d recommend not stressing about it too much no matter where you end up or what grades you achieve on results day, you’ll always have more options than you might initially think, whether that’s through entering Clearing or applying again for the next UCAS application cycle.

As always, I hope this was helpful and if you have any queries or additional tips you’d give to students yourself, please drop them down below! :biggrin:

- Eve (Kingston Rep).
(edited 2 months ago)
Original post by Kingston Reps
Applying to five different courses through UCAS is a great way to cover your bases regardless of the grades/offers you get - but if you do end up with multiple offers, it can be tough to decide which ones are going to be your firm and insurance choices. At this point in the year, you might have already heard back from some of your universities and received one or two offers so here’s three top tips on what to consider before making your decision! :smile:

1. Attend Offer-Holder/Open Days!
If you’re able to, attending an in-person offer-holder or open day is a great way to check out the vibe of your university town/city, as well as giving you the opportunity to talk to any current students or lecturers. If you can’t attend in-person especially if you live abroad make sure to keep an eye out for any online webinars/virtual tours which can give you a better idea of the accommodation and learning facilities available.

2. Weigh up your costs!
Whilst in an ideal world, cost wouldn’t be a factor in deciding where to study, it’s important to be realistic. UK undergraduate tuition fees tend to be fairly standard across the board, but living costs can vary from area to area: make sure to check out each of your universities’ budgeting/student financial advice pages on their website to gather a rough idea of how much you would be looking to spend on rent/food/transport every month or so.

3. Consider the conditions of your offers.
If you’ve received a conditional offer, it’s important to consider whether or not you think you’d actually be able to meet those conditions for example, the grade requirements may a bit higher than you initially expected and you might be unsure if you can achieve those grades on exam day.

On the other hand, if you’ve received an unconditional offer, you won’t have to worry about this. Regardless, you’ll still likely have to sit your exams, and if you would genuinely prefer to attend a university which has offered you a higher requirement but conditional place, it’s important to think through your potential performance on exam day. An unconditional safety net can be nice, but not at the expense of turning down an offer from a university you would have preferred to attend.

No matter what your situation, choosing which university is going to be your firm choice can be difficult. And whilst it is a big decision, I’d recommend not stressing about it too much no matter where you end up or what grades you achieve on results day, you’ll always have more options than you might initially think, whether that’s through entering Clearing or applying again for the next UCAS application cycle.

As always, I hope this was helpful and if you have any queries or additional tips you’d give to students yourself, please drop them down below! :biggrin:

- Eve (Kingston Rep).

Unconditional offer for applicants still sitting level 3 qualifications are not supposed to be happening anymore.

They’ve been found repeatedly to be damaging to students long term success and against the principles of fair admissions.

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