If you are applying for a University undergraduate course in the UK, you will need to apply through a tool called UCAS. All UK based universities use UCAS for their applications and you can apply for up to 5 different courses or universities. There are 2 deadlines you will need to meet:
- October for Oxford and Cambridge
- January for all other undergraduate courses
There are a couple of steps you need to follow to apply for a university course, all of these can be found here >>
One of the most difficult, and often time-consuming, steps in the process is the personal statement step. This requires a precise style of writing, so we asked members of the Stemette Society for their tips on how to succeed in UCAS applications…
Ella, Medical Student at the University of Aberdeen
“I found it easiest to break into three paragraphs. My first was specifically why I wanted to study medicine – it tied my work experience, passion for biology and chemistry, and external reading and other key information about the skills I had that made me a strong candidate. My second paragraph was focused on my work experience and shadowing, and the final paragraph – more of a sentence or two – was on other things, like awards, volunteering, hobbies, sports, and music.
I think the best advice of all of this would be to get feedback. Get your teachers to read it for you, get your parents to read it, get anyone who is willing to do so read it and give feedback. Some you might take on board, some you might not.”
“I’m not naturally a writer so I wrote a list of things to include and then found a way to connect it all. If you start now, you’ll have lots of time to think and redraft before the January submission! Remember to try and connect anything you’re writing about to the courses you’re applying to. Even things like clubs and bands show your commitment and time management skills so definitely include them if you have room!
I didn’t have to attend an interview for my course but don’t include things in your personal statement you couldn’t talk about!
The last thing to do is check your spelling and grammar!”
Dearbhla, Environmental Science Student at the University of York
“PLAN- if you have a good plan of what you want to say, even if it’s just a few bullet points, then trust me it’ll make everything way easier when you come to writing your personal statement. Also is probably a good idea to keep that plan nearby so if you remember something you want to add, you can jot it down when you remember. Planning definitely helped me!”
Good luck to anyone applying for university.
Have you got any more tips on UCAS applications? Let us know in the Stemette Society >>