Clearing opens up in Lancashire ahead of A Level results day

Sharon Blaylock, the University of Cumbria admissions managerSharon Blaylock, the University of Cumbria admissions manager
Sharon Blaylock, the University of Cumbria admissions manager
Students may not have sat A Levels this year, but they will still be getting assessed results which will determine the next step in their futures.

Universities across the county are planning to start the academic year as planned in September, most with a mixture of online and some face-to-face contact for new and existing students.

Some universities have started the Clearing process early and have set up virtual call centres online.

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Students who don't get the entry requirements for their chosen courses, or haven’t received an offer from a UK university, are automatically entered into Clearing.

The University of Central Lancashire will be holding virtual open days as part of the Clearing processThe University of Central Lancashire will be holding virtual open days as part of the Clearing process
The University of Central Lancashire will be holding virtual open days as part of the Clearing process

Late applicants and mature students can also apply through Clearing, as well as those who do not want the place they may have originally been offered.

Students who get better grades than expected can also look for a place through Clearing.

The Lancaster-based University of Cumbria already has a dedicated team on hand each day and there is also a handy new downloadable guide with everything you need to know about Clearing has also been produced, including details of Clearing Plus – a new system to help match applicants who have not met the entry requirements of their chosen course with other universities.

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Adapting to the challenges of providing support in the wake of the coronavirus crisis, professional services staff in admissions, student finance, accommodation, student services and the university’s course enquiry centre are using new software to answer all calls to its Clearing hotline

Academic lecturers are also be part of the University of Cumbria team discussing the application process, entry requirements, course details and other queries .

Sharon Blaylock the UoC admissions manager said: “Our admissions team is here and ready to talk, either right now or throughout Clearing. We are here to help anyone who may be asking themselves if university is right for them and if it is right at this particular time.

"They will want to know what we have to offer, what measures we’re putting in place for the new year, and what support we can offer in the months and years ahead."

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She added: "Whilst the pandemic has many re-considering their future plans and opportunities, we are still here ready to support our students and to let them know that if they stay focused and stick with us, they can go far.

"By having those conversations with us now, we can provide support at every step along the way and we will look forward to welcoming you in September."

Outreach officer Matthew Rayson, who is co-ordinating the university’s Clearing 2020 team, said that in addition to the ongoing clearing support available , plans for A-level results day will include a safe and socially distanced fully-staffed call centre operating from the university’s Lancaster campus.

A second virtual open day will also take place on Saturday 15 August, following the success of the university’s first online open day recently that attracted hundreds of visitors.

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The university hotline is 0808 178 7373 - and online at

Over at the University of Central Lancashire in Preston, Clearing will be delivered on site and also hosting virtual open days for new and prospective students.

A spokesman said: "This year we are planning to deliver our Clearing operations on site in a Covid-19 secure way with all appropriate relevant health and safety measures in place.

"This will include having a reduced number of colleagues on campus in a safe and fully protected environment to answer calls and deal with student enquiries.

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"Our lines will be open on A Level results day on Thursday 13 August from 6.30am and will be operating every day through the following two weeks."

There will be Clearing virtual open days on Friday and Saturday August 14 and 15 which will give potential students the chance to get their questions answered and experience a real feel for what it will be like to study at UCLan.

The spokesman added: "We have also just launched a series of daily online Clearing chat events through our website which will give people the chance to discuss their options live with staff and current students.

"These will run on selected dates throughout August between 3 and 5pm.”

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