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University offers support to North West students going through Clearing

The clearing hub at Northumbria University offering advice and guidance to students from across the UK on A level results day. (North News And Pictures/2daymedia)

[N]orthumbria University, Newcastle, is inviting students in the North West receiving their A Level results today (Thursday 17 August) to call its Clearing hotline as it offers support to those hoping to gain a place at a university and course of their choice.

A 160-strong team of Northumbria experts are on hand to reassure, answer questions and guide students through the process of Clearing, Adjustment and Confirmation. Meanwhile, an independent national survey carried out on behalf of Northumbria University showed around half of students aren’t fully aware of the options available to them.

Within hours of phone lines opening at 7am today, the University had already seen huge demand for its courses with thousands of calls from prospective students.

Northumbria University – Clearing 2017 from Northumbria University on Vimeo.

Northumbria University is also bucking the national trend with an overall increase of 37% in the number of students from the EU applying to study at the university, despite a 5% drop nationally.

The University has a limited number of places available through Clearing for high quality students.  The Northumbria team is encouraging students who either didn’t get the grades they were hoping for, or who have done better than expected, to get in touch to discuss the options open to them.

The advice comes as recent survey findings show almost half (49%) of current students in the North West still don’t understand the Clearing process. While four in ten (41%) admitted they didn’t understand the role of Adjustment – the process by which students can change course or university if they get better results than predicated.

Helen Bower, Assistant Marketing Director (Undergraduate) at Northumbria University, said: “Once again we’ve seen huge demand for our courses and we’ve got a bigger team than ever before on the ground in our Clearing hub manning the phones and helping thousands of students picking up their results today.

“The Clearing process has changed significantly in recent years and the option to ‘trade up’ using Adjustment now gives students the opportunity to reconsider their original choice if they have done better than expected in their exams.

“We recognise there is a lot for students to take in during their final year at school or college and that A Level results day can be very stressful. The key is not to panic. It’s important that whatever they decide, it’s the right option for them.

“Many students have deliberated long and hard about which university they feel is the right one for them. However, the Clearing process gives young people more flexibility and potentially opens new doors.

“We welcome any students who want to talk to us to get in touch and one of our dedicated team of experts will be able to guide them through the options available to them based on their individual situation.”

Psychologist Dr Mark Moss has some reassuring words for students picking up their A Level results today. He said: “For those students who haven’t got the grades they need, catastrophising is a normal response – they may feel it is the end of the world and think about worse case scenarios. However, it is really important to keep things in perspective.

“Not getting the grades you want is not the end of the process, it is just an opportunity to rethink things and move in a different direction, and this usually ends up with the student still going on to study at university, often getting a place through Clearing.

“Every year around 60,000 students have very positive experience of the Clearing process. It’s important to try and stay positive and focused and be around people who make you feel calm and keep a clear head. Things are never cut and dry and there are always great alternatives out there. It may even end up being the best thing that ever happened.”

Northumbria has a global reputation for academic excellence and places a strong emphasis on overall student experience, ranking in the top 10 in the UK for student facilities in the Times Higher Education Student Experience Survey 2016-17.

Accommodation Manager Alastair Reekie, commented: “We know leaving home for the first time can be a daunting prospect. And that’s why at Northumbria we make it as easy as possible for students and support them throughout the process. Having a great new place to live can make a world of difference and we guarantee quality accommodation for all our first year students, including those who obtain a place through Clearing. Once a student accepts a Clearing offer from us through UCAS you can book accommodation within 24 hours, and often even quicker.”

Allard Newell, from Carlisle, has just completed the third year of an Interior Architecture BA (Hons) course at Northumbria. He said: “I decided to come to Northumbria because it has one of the top ranked Architecture departments in the country. I also play hockey and Northumbria is a great university for sport.

“The facilities and workshops here are outstanding, the 3D printers and laser cutters have really helped me in my design and the staff are very knowledgeable and supportive.

“I feel Northumbria is really highly regarded by employers and they know the high standard of students to come out of the architecture courses which helps when it comes to looking for a job.”

Helen Bower added: “When choosing a university, students are looking for an overall great experience. They want to know the course they choose offers quality teaching, career opportunities, the chance to study abroad and get real life work experience. But the life experience you gain from going to university, enjoying new opportunities, meeting new people, gaining independence, is equally as important.”

Northumbria University, Newcastle, has a limited number of places available for high quality students through Clearing this summer. For more information, visit or call the Clearing Hotline on 0800 085 1085.

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