Student Blog Squad

Applying to university through Clearing

Hi, I’m Poppy and I’m in my third year studying Journalism at Leeds Beckett.
When applying to university, I was unsure what I wanted to do as a career, but I knew I wanted to go into further education after taking a gap year, as I really enjoyed learning new skills. 

Two people talking across a table both with a drink

Deciding to change my plans

After college I took a gap year to work. My original plan after this was to go travelling around the world. I had saved up for this during my gap year, but due to covid-19 restrictions, my travels were cancelled. I had to think about my future and at the time I knew I didn’t want to carry on living at home. My sister advised me to apply for university as she thoroughly enjoyed her time at university and said it was an amazing life experience.

At first, I was really worried and conscious I had not received the grades I wanted in my A-levels. This was because during my A-levels I became very sick and was hospitalised with tonsillitis and glandular fever. At the time, this heavily impacted my studies and resulted in me receiving grades that did not truly represent my skills and were not sufficient to get into university the usual way.

Applying through Clearing

I found out about Clearing from one of my tutors, and at the time I had nothing to lose! So, I made an application from scratch through Clearing on UCAS and spent three days writing my personal statement. I had always wanted to go to Leeds Beckett, I remember I was set on this university since year 10. I looked thoroughly through the university courses that appealed to me and found a Journalism BA course. I loved the sound of the modules and could see myself with a future career in this industry. 

I decided to apply for two universities, including Leeds Beckett as I loved the sound of both of the courses. I had two phone call interviews with both course leaders from the universities. The process of these interviews was very straightforward, and I was always guided with the correct information about both courses and life at university as a whole.

Both phone calls happened around two weeks before the courses were due to start. The interviews were around 25 minutes. The aim was to get to know me as an individual and to ensure the course was something that I would be able to handle. The course leaders wanted to see if I was motivated and passionate about the course I had chosen. I made sure I told them my hobbies that included vlogging, blogging and reviewing food in restaurants.

My experience

Overall, I would say that the process of applying through Clearing was straight forward, and I personally felt that there was always help on the website in case I was struggling with any information that I was unsure about. 

Three years later and I still remember getting the notification through that I had been accepted into Leeds Beckett University. A massive weight was lifted off my shoulders and I was so happy to know that I could achieve something that would change my life. 

The best advice I could give to a prospective student is to never give up on a goal or dream because you think you won’t be accepted; you never know until you try.

If I was to re-do the whole process again, I would definitely visit the city before deciding on a course. You can really get a sense if a city is the right match for you or not. If your still unsure whether you’ll know, don’t worry you’ll know exactly what I mean when you visit…

Try not to be persuaded by friends or family, this is ultimately your decision, and you need to make sure you are happy with both the course you are studying and the city you are living in. Additionally, try not to feel rushed by any of these decisions, you will be on the course for a long time, it’s not a decision that should be made lightly. Lastly, always make sure you look through all the modules before applying. It’s important to make sure you have an overall interest in the course, to ensure you work hard, do your best, and above all else are happy during your time at university.

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