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Post-COVID: Overview of UK University Admissions



For school leavers considering UK undergraduate degree admissions, there is a plethora of information available. The reality is that a Post COVID recession will cause many to seek higher education as protection from underemployment and unemployment and a long-term investment. However, the entrance process to secure a university place has never been less clear.

  1. UK University admission application focuses on the passion to study a particular subject with emphasis on the academic achievements.

  2. There is intense competition for undergraduate places, particularly because admissions numbers are capped at present. The pressure is on students to differentiate their skill set.

  3. ClassRx prepares students with a highly effective bespoke and flexible online tutoring system assisting their transition from school to university.


If you’re a 20/21 student, what’s your Uni thinking/doing?



The 20/21 cycle was set to be tough for universities with a projected demographic trough in numbers of UK school leavers. Then came COVID. The undergraduate application process descended into unprecedented flux with greater uncertainty for UK universities in securing their next UK cohort. Additionally, the sharp decline in high-fee-paying foreign students (typically 120,000) will leave them facing a financial ‘black hole’.

In response, universities swiftly offer reassurance to applicants with up-to-date info on Uni portals for students experiencing COVID course disruption. In May 2020, Cambridge University announced it would honour offers providing conditions are met. Most confirmed flexibility in the admission process with conditional offers converted to unconditional offers in some cases. There are virtual open days available, and interviews can take place online.

On the UCAS website, there is crucial advice on aptitude tests such as MAT or UCAT and checking which are required and how these may be affected by COVID. Some universities have cancelled English tests such as TOEFL/IELTS and accept tests from private app/tech businesses such as Duolingo English Test. Oxford University is open for the 2020/2021 academic year, emphasising small group teaching, supervised research and quality online activities

The clearing process needs to be explored for late applications. For late applications submitted from 6 July – 20 October filling empty course places, UCAS announced a new Clearing system – Clearing Plus available from July to help students with no existing university offer.

The scramble for students led universities to increase unconditional offers causing a strong reaction to this skewed access. The UK Government banned the move from 23 March, but only for two weeks, redirecting their focus to student capping as a longer-term move to ensure fairer distribution, a measure not implemented since 2015. The government plans to limit the numbers of English students applying to universities in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, which, in turn, will limit future applications for these countries within the UK to avoid less preferred establishments facing empty lecture halls. Furthermore, some universities such as Oxford and Edinburgh announced deferring to 2021 is not available for every course and students can lose their places if they take this step.

If you’re a 21/22 or 22/23 applicant, what does it mean for you?



Capping may be implemented over the long term making it more potentially more difficult to secure a place at your university of choice.

In the UK, schools remain effectively shut, and the normal schedule severely disrupted. A long and for many, empty summer lies ahead: an ideal opportunity to not waste time and learn lifelong skills with ClassRx. The effects of COVID 19 make it essential for prospective undergraduates building applications for 21/22 to make their statements stand out in the admission process. (And even if you’re a 20/21 applicant, top-up your skills for uni readiness.)

Undergraduates face unique challenges from higher education institutions expecting them to be technologically advanced enough to navigate and engage with these new platforms. Make sure to stand out from the crowd by learning new exciting skills such as programming aka coding with ClassRx. Such skills helps you to prepare not only for UK university admissions but also for USA college/university admissions.

ClassRx specialises in STEM subjects and encourages curiosity in every child. We provide an exceptional online learning experience in STEM subjects. Enrol now for an online course; differentiate and distinguish your skillset; maximise your university entrance success and prospects in the UK University admissions.


Interested in finding out more about our online tutoring options? Get in touch and we will respond within 24 hours.