Female student getting advice

What to do when you get an unexpected offer

Find out what to do if you get a higher or lower offer, an offer for a different course or no offers at all

Waiting for course offers doesn't have to be stressful – the key is to make sure you're prepared for all outcomes.

Universities spend a lot of time evaluating your application and personal statement. Sometimes the result is getting a different offer than you might have expected.

Find out what to do if you get a higher or lower offer, an offer for a course you didn't apply for or no offer at all.

If you haven't made your choices yet, see our guides on applying for an undergraduate course or applying for a postgraduate master's course.

Getting a higher or lower offer

Sometimes a university will offer you a higher or lower offer than you expected.

If your offer is conditional, then we always advise you to work hard to achieve the best grades you can. You should continue to do this even if you get a lower offer – committing to your studies and exams will help once you start uni.

If you receive a higher offer and don't think you can meet it, you can contact the university to ask them to look again at your application in full. Ask them if they can accommodate a lower grade to confirm your place. If you have any extenuating circumstances or additional information, make sure to let them know.

Getting an offer for a course you didn't apply for

Many factors go into whether a university can make you an offer for a course you've applied for. They'll consider your grades, your personal statement and even individual modules from your current qualifications. It's important they take your entire profile into consideration to give you the best opportunity at success.

Sometimes, they won't be able to make you an offer for a course you've applied for but see a better opportunity for you in another course. When this happens, they might instead offer you a suitable alternative course to consider.

When you apply to us, we take all information you give us into account – not just your grades. See more on:

Getting no offers

You might find that some of your offers are unsuccessful. But don't panic if you don't get any offers at all.

If you find yourself without any offers, you might be able to add extra choices if you still have time. If not, you can still apply to university courses through Clearing.

Adding extra choices

If you didn't use all 5 choices in your application, you can add another choice in UCAS Track anytime before 30 June (as long as you haven't accepted or declined any offers).

If you did make 5 choices that were unsuccessful (or you declined the offers) you can use UCAS Extra anytime between 25 February and 5 July.

UCAS Extra lets you apply to 1 more course. If you decline an offer from that course or you don't get a decision within 21 days, you can add 1 more.

Applying through clearing and adjustment

Clearing and adjustment opens in July each year. It's a great opportunity to find the best course for you if you were unsuccessful in your first round of applications or have changed your mind about the course you want to do.

We have a step-by-step guide to help you apply through clearing and adjustment.

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