When Do Universities Confirm Your Place in 2024?

Ben Maples  · Sep 15th 2023  · 6 min

Not everyone knows when universities will confirm their place on a course. It can be nerve-racking for many students as they anxiously await their results, but its never as bad as you think.


When do universities confirm your place?

For 2023, most universities will confirm your place on results day, August 17th. This information will be available on UCAS Hub from 8:15am on August 17th, along with your A-level results.

If you don’t see your confirmation straight away, don’t panic! It can take up to 24 hours for the university to confirm your place. If you have your A-level results, and you haven’t met the grade requirements for your course, it’s best you contact the university directly to see if they are still considering your application.

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What does it mean when your place is confirmed on UCAS?

This means you have been accepted at the university you applied to. Ensure all the details on your application are correct before taking your next steps.

You are likely in a queue, and the university or college will get to your application as soon as possible.

The next steps will depend on the university or college you apply to. Your university or college will send you the next steps at some point, however, if you have not heard back after a while, you should contact the university or college to find out what happens next.

How long does it take to wait for UCAS offers?

Decision time depends on the university. Most universities aim to get back to students as quickly as they can, but several factors could delay their response to you.

Typically, universities will work through their backlog by the date you applied. So you could hear back from universities on or before the following dates:

  • 18th May: If your application was made by the 25 January 2023 deadline.
  • 12th July: If your application is made on or before 30 June 2023.
  • Towards the end of October: If you applied through Clearing.

Universities make decisions at different times. Some students have been known to receive an offer before they sit their exams, others are forced to wait until results day, while others may have to wait for a few days or so after that.

UCAS personal statement changes

Why hasn’t my place been confirmed yet?

You are likely in a queue, and the university or college will get to your application as soon as possible. It has also been known for the volume of traffic from potential students to the UCAS website to crash the site temporarily, so some students may not receive their offers until activity dies down.

It’s always best to ensure you are contactable on results day.

It is possible to contact either UCAS or the university or college you applied to on results day. If your college or university has made a conditional offer to you, and you have met or exceeded those requirements, you will likely have been accepted. Check back in a few hours or the next day and see if things have changed.

When is the latest a university will reply to me by?

This, again, will depend on the university. The date you applied can potentially impact when you hear back from universities, as they will have a backlog to deal with.

That doesn’t mean you cannot chase them. If your university or college has not gotten back to you, you can call them or UCAS up and find out what’s going on.

UCAS personal statement changes

What if I am on holiday when the offers come out?

It’s always best to ensure you are contactable on results day. Try to avoid booking holidays for this day if you can. If your holiday is already booked or cannot be moved, then it is best to ensure that all of the details on your UCAS Hub are up to date and correct.

If you are on holiday, elect someone to access your UCAS Hub while away. This, typically, will be a parent or guardian. It is also possible to speak to UCAS and ensure they can access your hub. That way, your elected UCAS representative can collect your grades from your school or college if given a completed permission slip.

What if I don’t get the grades I need?

This is down to you, and there are plenty of options open to you. Your first port of call should be to the university itself. If you ask the university to reconsider your application, you may save yourself a lot of time. The university may decide that if you are only a few marks off the required grade, they will give you the university place anyway. If they do not, there are still other options open to you.

Accepting an unconditional offer means that you cannot choose your insurance offer, and you will also not be able to enter Clearing or Adjustment.

Many students opt to retake their exams. This means having to re-apply to UCAS over the next year and improve your grades. Many students do this, and it is an excellent way of ensuring you can still attend the college or university you initially applied to.

The most common route for students to take is to apply through Clearing. Clearing is a process wherein those who have not achieved the desired grades can apply to other universities. Those who have achieved higher grades than anticipated can apply to other universities through the Adjustment process.

Some students decide they want to take a break entirely. This is fine too. Taking a gap year to go and explore the world or even try new work experiences abroad is welcome to do so, ready for a fresh application in a year.

UCAS personal statement changes

When do universities confirm places for students with unconditional offers?

This will be up to the college or university. Typically, these offers arrive before results day, as the offer itself is not contingent on the grades you achieve.

However, there is a caveat to accepting an unconditional offer. Accepting an unconditional offer means that you cannot choose your insurance offer, and you will also not be able to enter Clearing or Adjustment.

Unconditional offers do not mean you should not still study, though. Your grades may be important when applying for jobs, and if the university course you applied to is suddenly cancelled, you will need to apply for new courses.

What should I do if I haven’t heard back from any university?

Speak to UCAS. UCAS can help you with your UCAS application and give you a timeframe or rough estimate on when you may expect to hear back from a university or college.

Most universities will confirm your place on A-Level results day.

You can also speak to the universities or colleges you have applied to. Speaking directly to them will ensure you get a straight answer.

What do I do now I’ve got my offers?

When you have the offers on the table, the choice is yours. You will need to make a firm choice and an insurance choice based on the offers you receive.

You may find that your first-choice university doesn’t make you an offer. Don’t worry if this is the case. If other universities or colleges have made you offers, pick the best one from the offers made, or you may decide to go for other options, be it retaking exams or going on a gap year.

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