Top Tips for an Outstanding UCAS Application Form

Applying for university can be a stressful process, especially as most students haven’t filled out a UCAS application before. With hundreds of applications for every course and places at universities limited, it’s important that your UCAS form stands out for all the right reasons. Here’s some top tips for impressing university admissions staff with your application.

Know What Tutors Are Looking For

If you can start to understand how admissions tutors review your application, then you are halfway there towards putting together an outstanding UCAS form. Admissions tutors want to fill their places with good students – interested, sensible and independent individuals. Take a look at your UCAS application and make sure you’ve managed to convey these traits. Tutors also have to assess every application consistently and fairly, which is why they check your UCAS form carefully using Selection Criteria to decide whether your application is worthwhile. For most courses the criteria is available for you to read – just take a look at the UCAS website or university subject information pages. Tailoring your application towards this selection criteria will not only show that you’re an engaged individual but will be sure to impress admissions staff.

Write a Great Personal Statement

A good personal statement can mean the difference between receiving an offer at your chosen university and being unsuccessful, which is why it’s one of the most important parts of your UCAS application. It gives you the chance to stand out from other candidates, meaning being able to write a great statement that’s original, showcases your strengths and has perfect spelling and grammar is crucial. Most students find it tricky to talk about themselves, and trying to condense everything into 4,000 characters can certainly be an overwhelming task. However, don’t forget it’s your opportunity to shine, so don’t be afraid of talking about your academic and personal achievements. We recommended going the extra mile by putting in effort into all of your explanations and rather than just talking concisely about your achievements, discuss the impact they’ve had on you and why it has made you a better person. It’s also important to work hard with the language you use throughout your statement. For example, words like ‘passion’ are seen as generic and certainly won’t grab the attention of the reader. You should also talk about specific aspects of the subject that fuel your interest, and the more you can show evidence of this throughout your application, the better chance of acceptance you have. For more helpful tips on how to write a killer personal statement, check out our blog post here.

Show Your Commitment To The Course

It sounds obvious, but showing a real interest in the subjects you’re applying for is the key to standing out. In fact, a significant amount of your UCAS application should focus on your chosen subject and details of what you have read or participated in to show evidence of your genuine interest. If you’re applying for a variety of different courses, try to write about common themes that are relevant to them all.

Perfect The Basics

Before sending off your UCAS application it should be checked multiple times for spelling, grammar, correct usage of words and so on. With so many applications to choose from, admissions tutors will easily dismiss yours if it contains misspelt words and basic grammatical errors. Not only will they feel it demonstrates that you won’t be able to perform to university standard in academic work, it shows that you aren’t paying attention to the details and are lazy in your approach. To help perfect the basics, get your application proofread by a few different people. This can be teachers, family members or friends and it will help iron out any silly mistakes and loved ones will be able to tell whether you’ve described yourself correctly. After all, your UCAS application should be a glowing reflection of who you are and your hopes and ambitions, so you want to showcase that over silly errors!

For more information about the UCAS application parents, check out our helpful blog post here.