Information for Firm, Insurance and Clearing offer holders

Further information in response to the Government's announcement on A Level grading

Latest FAQs following the Government's announcement on 17 August

I was made an alternative course offer but my Centre Assessed Grades (CAGs) now meet my original offer. What should I do?

If you are already holding an Unconditional Firm change of course offer (UCC on UCAS) at Aston and your centre assessed grades now meet your original offer we will be reviewing your application and verifying your CAGs in the next few days. We will be in touch as soon as possible with information on your offer and what you need to do next.  

In the meantime, please do not self-release yourself from Aston.   

For our most competitive courses or those programmes with lab restrictions we may not always be able to accommodate all applicants who meet the CAG entry requirements on their original course. In this situation, we will normally make an offer for deferred entry in 2021 or you can continue with your existing course choice.  For Medicine, specific guidance will apply separately to this statement and applicants should contact ugadmissions@aston.ac.uk for further advice.   

 

I was originally Firm/insurance at Aston. My Centre Assessed Grades (CAG) do not meet my original offer but they do meet the Clearing offer. What should I do?  

 If you were originally holding a firm/insurance offer at Aston and your CAGs do not meet your original offer and you are not already placed (UF) on a course at Aston, you can apply via Clearing if a course still has vacancies.  You can apply for a Clearing place with us by completing our online application form (‘self-apply’) on our website. 

I was holding Aston as my firm (CF) or insurance (CI) choice but was rejected. My Centre Assessed Grades now meet my original offer. What should I do?  

If you were originally firm/insurance choice at Aston, have been rejected, your centre assessment grades now meet your offer and would like to study with us, you will need to email us on ugadmissions@aston.ac.uk to let us know that you would like to study with us.  We will be reviewing your application and verifying your CAGs in the next few days. We will be in touch as soon as possible with information on your offer and what you need to do next.  

For our most competitive courses or those programmes with lab restrictions we may not always be able to accommodate all applicants who meet the CAG entry requirements on their original course. In this situation, we will normally make an offer for deferred entry in 2021 or you can continue with your existing course choice.  For Medicine, specific guidance will apply separately to this statement and applicants should contact ugadmissions@aston.ac.uk for further advice.  

In the meantime, please do not self-release from any other institution where you may be holding a place until we have confirmed that we have a place available for you for 2020. 


Applicants already holding Aston as their Firm Choice

I have a confirmed place at Aston, what happens next?

Congratulations on your offer to study with us! All of our new students will start their studies as planned on 21 September 2020, through a blended learning approach that combines both online and on-campus teaching; you can find more information and read our student pledge.

You will soon start to receive emails about welcome week and enrolment so please check your emails regularly. Find out more information about Welcome Week. If the email which you included on your UCAS form is a school/college email which you can no longer access, please ensure you update this in UCAS track.
I have a conditional firm offer from Aston and I have my results. Why has my status not changed on UCAS?

This is normally because the admissions team does not yet have all of the information from you that is needed to make a decision on your application. The information that we are waiting for may include one of the following conditions:

  • GCSE Maths or English results that are included in your offer conditions. Please note UCAS do not send these to us so you will need to send them to the admissions team once you have received them.
     
  • A qualification which is not sent to the University via UCAS. You can check if your qualification is sent via UCAS here. If your qualification is not sent via UCAS you will need to send to the admissions team.
     
  • If you are under 18 at the start of term, your parent or guardian may need to complete a parental consent form. Please send your completed form to the admissions team.
     
  • If you are applying to Aston Medical School, you may have outstanding DBS or occupational health checks

If none of the above apply to you, please email us ugadmissions@aston.ac.uk.

I have been made an alternative offer for a different course, what do I do next?

If you have not met your original offer conditions, the admissions team may have made you an alternative offer for a different course at Aston. UCAS call this an Unconditional Course Change offer.

If we have made you an alternative offer, we will have sent you an email with more information.

You will need to log into UCAS Track to accept or decline this offer.

  • If you accept in UCAS Track, you will automatically be placed on the alternative course at Aston. UCAS will confirm when you need to respond.
     
  • If you decline then you will either be placed at your insurance choice (if they have accepted you) or you will be able to apply for places in Clearing.

Find out more information about unconditional course changes.

Can I change my course?

If you are an applicant holding an unconditional firm choice offer with us, you can request a course change by emailing our admissions team. Please include in your email your UCAS number and the course name which you would like to transfer on to. We will consider requests for course transfers for all of our courses on a case by case basis and will aim to be as flexible as possible.

Factors which will be taken into account when deciding if an applicant can transfer course include:

  1. The timing of the request; transfers will not normally be considered after week two of term one to ensure that students have sufficient time to catch up on any work missed. It is not normally possible to change your course part way through the year and after week two of term one you may have to wait until the start of the next academic year to start your new course.
     
  2. Availability of spaces on the Programme
     
  3. Whether the student’s previous qualifications meet the entry requirements of the Programme they wish to transfer onto

Find out more about the arrangements that Aston has in place for course transfers.

If you are already an enrolled Aston student please consult our arrangements for course transfers.

Please note for Aston Medical School, applicants who choose to start on another undergraduate course in the UK or overseas, while waiting to take the autumn exams, will not be able to transfer to the MBChB programme as the Medical School do not accept transfers.

Can I defer to September 2021?

The University normally allows deferred entry for most of our courses; if you defer entry this would mean that you would start your course in September 2021. If you would like to request a deferral please:

  • Login to MAP (My Aston Portal)
  • Go to the ‘My Application(s)’ section and then click on request a deferral
  • Submit your deferral request in MAP
  • The Admissions Team will review your application and confirm if your deferral can be accepted as soon as possible.

Please note that we are not always able to consider deferrals for our most competitive programmes. We will consider requests for deferral for all of our courses on a case by case basis and will aim to be as flexible as possible.

You can find out more about what it means to defer your entry to University on the UCAS website.

Can I defer to January?

We do not currently offer a January start for Undergraduate programmes.

How can I release myself from my place at Aston?
  • If you hold an unconditional firm offer (UF) with Aston and wish to release yourself from this you can use the ‘decline your place’ button on UCAS Track. You can find more information on the UCAS website.
     
  • You should only use this option if you are sure you do not want to come to Aston.
     
  • Please note by declining your firm place at Aston, you’ll enter Clearing. If you want to go to your insurance place instead, you should phone them to see if they will accept you before declining your firm place.
     
  • If you hold a conditional firm offer (CF) offer with Aston and wish to release yourself from this to go into Clearing you will need to email the Admissions team and confirm that you no longer wish to take up your place at Aston. If you are also still holding a conditional offer with your insurance choice institution you would also need to speak to your insurance choice.

Applicants applying in Clearing or adjustment

I have been made a Clearing offer - what happens next?

If you would like to accept our offer, once you are able to (after 3pm on Thursday 13th August) you need to add Aston as a Clearing choice on UCAS Track. Go to the ‘Your choices’ section of Track and click 'Add Clearing choice.’ You can then enter the details of the University (Aston – A80) and the course (you can find individual course codes via our course finder).

Please remember to add your Clearing choice by the deadline which is specified in your offer letter.

Once you have added your Clearing choice, our Admissions team will be monitoring the UCAS Clearing acceptance lists frequently and will confirm your place via UCAS as soon as possible.

I've added Aston as a Clearing choice. Why has my offer not been confirmed on UCAS yet?

Our admissions team are monitoring Clearing acceptances and will accept applicants who have added Aston as a Clearing choice as soon as possible. We understand that it can be stressful for applicants to wait while Clearing choices are confirmed on Track and have a dedicated team in place to process these decisions as quickly as we can. Please note that there may be a delay in processing Clearing acceptances on the 13th and 14th August when a large number of Clearing enquiries are being received.

I have missed the deadline for my Clearing offer - what should I do?

Please check our clearing page to see if there are still vacancies available for your chosen course. If there are still vacancies for your chosen course please call the Clearing hotline and ask them to extend the deadline on your Clearing offer.

Clearing Plus has suggested that I may be able to secure a place in Clearing at Aston, what should I do?

Find out more about Clearing Plus. If Clearing Plus has suggested you are a match with Aston, you will need to submit a formal application to us in order to receive an offer. You can do this either by calling our Clearing hotline or by applying via our online Clearing application form.

I have applied in Clearing but would like to change my course, what should I do?

If your Clearing place has been confirmed on UCAS Track, you can request a course change by emailing our admissions team. Please include in your email your UCAS number and the course name which you would like to transfer on to. We will consider requests for course transfers for all of our courses on a case by case basis and will aim to be as flexible as possible.

Factors which will be taken into account when deciding if an applicant can take place include:

  1. The timing of the request; transfers will not normally be considered after week two of term one to ensure that students have sufficient time to catch up on any work missed. It is not normally possible to change your course part way through the year and after week two of term one you may have to wait until the start of the next academic year to start your new course.
     
  2. Availability of spaces on the Programme
     
  3. Whether the student’s previous qualifications meet the entry requirements of the Programme they wish to transfer onto

Find out more about the arrangements that Aston has in place for course transfers.

If you are already an enrolled Aston student please consult our arrangements for course transfers.

If you have not yet confirmed your place on UCAS Track, please check our clearing page if there are places available for the new course that you are interested in and if so please call the Clearing hotline and ask them if it is possible to make you an offer for the alternative course.

I have applied in Clearing but would like to defer, what should I do?

If you have been made a Clearing offer and now wish to defer to 2021, please follow the steps below to request a deferral:

  • Login to MAP (My Aston Portal)
     
  • Go to the ‘My Application(s)’ section and then click on request a deferral
     
  • Submit your deferral request in MAP
     
  • The Admissions Team will review your application and confirm if your deferral can be accepted as soon as possible.

Please note that we are not always able to consider deferrals for our most competitive programmes. We will consider requests for deferral for all of our courses on a case by case basis and will aim to be as flexible as possible.

You can find out more about what it means to defer your entry to University on the UCAS website.

I am retaking my GCSEs can you hold a Clearing place for me until I receive them?

Unfortunately we are unable to hold Clearing places while applicants wait for GCSE results. Once you have received your results, please check our clearing page and if there are still vacancies for the course you are interested in please contact us via our Clearing hotline or apply for a Clearing place online.

Will Aston use the UCAS tariff to make decisions?

No, Aston's admissions policy is that offers are made on the basis of grades rather than UCAS tariff.

Can I visit campus and have a tour?

Unfortunately we are unable to offer campus tours this year. Find out further information about student life and the campus.

Calculated grades and Autumn Exams

I have been rejected but I am planning to take the Autumn Exams. I would like to be considered for entry in 2021 instead. What should I do?

We appreciate that the awarding of calculated grades this year is an unprecedented situation. We welcome re-applications for September 2021 from applicants who have been rejected from Aston based on receiving calculated grades in 2020, if students are taking the Autumn Exam series. If a student applied to Aston in 2020 and was rejected based on calculated grades and is taking the Autumn exams, we are pleased to confirm that we will make an automatic offer at the same level as we did in 2020 if they decide to reapply for September 2021 entry. In order to be eligible for an offer for 2021 re-applicants must submit a 2021 application by the following dates:

  • UCAS deadline for Medicine is 15th October 2020.
  • UCAS deadline for all other courses is 15th January 2021

Re-applicants for Medicine will not need to take the UCAT test for a second time or do the MMI again. However, new criminal and occupational health checks will be required. Pharmacy and Optometry applicants will not need to interview again.

All offers will be conditional on applicants achieving their 2020 offer conditions in the Autumn exam series.

Have you considered contextual information when making decisions on Firm and Insurance choice applicants?

The University operates a contextual offer scheme called Aston Ready throughout the year. We are also able to confirm that contextual data has been made available to all Schools/Departments within the University as part of our process for confirming results.

I have been rejected but my School are planning to appeal my grades. What should I do?

Once you have received the outcome of your appeal, please contact our admissions team. Wherever possible, we will admit students who have met the original conditions of their offer following an appeal. For our most competitive courses or those programmes with lab restrictions we may not always be able to accommodate applicants who have successfully appealed if all of our places are full. Where an applicant has successfully appealed and there are no vacancies on the course, we will normally make an offer for deferred entry in 2021.

If I meet your conditions and start my degree but still want to take the exam option can I do so?

If you meet our offer conditions and would like to begin your degree with us but would also like to take the exam option to improve your grades, we would be happy for you to do so. We would encourage you to consider carefully how many of your A Level subjects you take the exam option for, as you will need to balance this extra workload with your first year degree. You may wish to discuss this with your teachers at School/College or with your Personal Tutor at Aston.

If I enrol at Aston and then take the Autumn exam and improve my grades, can I transfer course?

Aston’s standard arrangements for course transfers will apply. These arrangements are outlined on our student transfer page.

Information for international applicants

How do I pay my deposit?

All international students will be required to pay a deposit to secure a place on their chosen course. This information is provided in your offer letter, along with the details of your payment, including the amount to be paid and the date it will need to be paid by. This deposit amount will then be deducted from your first year’s tuition fees.

How do I get my CAS (Confirmation of Acceptance of Studies)

Once you have accepted your offer please complete the Pre-CAS questionnaire on MAP (My Aston Portal.) Details of how to access the Pre-CAS questionnaire can be found in your offer letter.

Applicants holding Aston as their Insurance Choice

My firm choice have accepted me but I would rather come to Aston, which is my insurance choice. Can I swap?

You are not able to swap your firm and insurance choices if you have been made an unconditional firm offer by your firm choice. If Aston is your insurance choice and you would now like to study with us, you need to apply through Clearing. Before releasing yourself into Clearing we recommend that you check our clearing page to ensure there are places on your chosen course and if so contact either our Clearing hotline or apply via our online self apply form to discuss your eligibility for an offer.

Starting University

We want you to feel comfortable and confident about studying at Aston during these uncertain times. Our number one priority is the health, safety and wellbeing of our students and staff, ensuring that you have a high quality learning experience whilst undertaking your degree course safely. That’s why we’ve made the Aston Student Pledge to reassure you that we will maintain standards in teaching, support and openness.

Where will my course start?

All our new students will start their studies as planned on 21 September 2020, through a blended learning approach that combines both online and on-campus teaching. Freshers/induction week will begin on the 21st September 2020, with teaching starting on the 28th September.

What will my learning experience be like in September?

We know an inspirational learning experience is important to you, so we have been working on an integrated offering which blends online and on campus sessions. As well as the traditional set-piece lectures which will be delivered online, there will be interactive practical lab-based work, clinics and discussion groups, sessions with your tutors and with the Learning Development Centre and the Centre for English Language and Communication at Aston. Our lecturers are busy planning sessions so that you can develop the skills employers value so highly, as well as getting enjoyment from your studies. Many of the sessions will be run on campus, provided it is safe to do so whilst adhering to social distancing guidelines, and the rest will be delivered in an engaging and interactive way online.

Lectures will be delivered online for the first term until at least January 2021. There are interactive sessions where there will be opportunities for you to ask questions and engage with lecturers and other students. As part of Aston’s commitment to a blended learning approach, you will also be invited to attend a number of on-campus small group learning sessions and activities as part of your course. Academic staff are keen to support you with your learning, through regular office hours where you can ask specific questions, or via a Personal Tutor allocated to all students.

Our intention is to gradually phase in more on-campus teaching and support as social distancing rules are relaxed/removed and it is safe to do so.

Will I be able to access student services?

You will also have access to a mix of online and on-campus student support and Library Services. We will expand this section and provide more details about these as we take account of the latest health advice.

Our Student Advice Team, Enabling Team and Student Counselling and Mental Wellbeing Service have moved to offering our current students guidance, advice and appointments over email, phone and Skype and will also be offering advice on campus.

Will the Students' Union be active from September?

Aston Students' Union (SU) is looking forward to welcoming new students in September. New students are automatically members of the SU and this is the place where you can join a variety of clubs and societies and start making some amazing friendships. Of course, things will be a bit different this September, but as restrictions change so do the SU’s plans for getting students together. We understand you want to have a great time and meet loads of new people when you arrive, and we will do all we can to make that happen.

The Aston Students’ Union (SU) operates a variety of services to support your wellbeing and help you settle into university life, and will offer a mix of both virtual and on campus activities during the academic year.

Earlier this year the SU set up a ‘virtual campus’ where students can connect and participate in a variety of online activities and events. Additionally, our Aston Auntie Scheme will partner new students with a current student who can act as a friend to introduce you to life at Aston.

As soon as it is safe to do so, we will start to introduce on-campus events and activities to give you more opportunities to engage with clubs, societies and meet other students. Whether via the website, social media, or if you visit their amazing building, the SU is the go to place to enjoy the fun side of university and get the most from your student experience

What measures are in place to keep us safe on the Aston Campus?

We have carried out a comprehensive COVID-19 risk assessment and we have established cleaning, handwashing and hygiene procedures in line with guidance. We are installing additional signage around campus to remind everyone of the need for social distancing and establishing one-way systems in some areas to control the flow of people around our buildings where necessary.

Additionally, in areas where staff and students are likely to form queues, rails or tape will be used to encourage proper spacing and social distancing. Some areas may also have Perspex shields installed to minimise the risks of face-to-face contact.

Hand sanitiser stations will be made available at access points and everyone is advised to use these when entering or leaving buildings. Additional signs reminding staff and students to wash their hands will also be posted around campus. We are strongly advising that students and staff wear face coverings when moving around the campus buildings.

See the latest updates on our response to the challenges of COVID-19.

Accommodation

Find out more information about Accommodation at Aston.

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