Student, Sarah Loftus and Mum, Paula Loftus, share their experiences of the clearing process at Loughborough University.
I missed out on the grades for my firm choice and did not want to go to my insurance choice, so searched for the same course at different universities in order to find new offers.
Where to get support
My school had a computer room set up to access UCAS where I could get university contact details, and the night before results day I got course details in order to prepare. The teachers and my family were my main help and support. They helped me to call the multiple universities that I was considering to get information about the course and living accommodation.
Why I chose Loughborough
I came down to visit the next day with the thought that I was already going to accept the offer, as I was really interested in the Social Psychology course. I met with the course leader who I had spoken to on the phone, and he made the course and department both very appealing. I also met the Rag Exec who showed me round the union and introduced me to the other Unions Execs, which made it seem a very welcoming and friendly university. The key reason I chose Loughborough was for the sport, as this is a main aspect of my life and ultimately that attracted me to the university.
Amazing student life
The student life is amazing. I have a high standard of living in my halls and people always on hand to answer any problems, and easy to settle into. The social scene is so much fun! There are tonnes of really nice people who make it easy to make friends. Facilities at the University are great. Amazing sports facilities, great lecture theatres and seminar classrooms, student support is extremely helpful and welcoming, the accommodation centre do a great job, medical centre answers all your needs, and the Students' Union has everything and anything you need at university!
Loughborough Town centre is small, but if you venture into it, there is a lot available and more than enough to suit your needs. It also provides a fun alternative night out!
How to get in touch
I called them over the phone after finding a slightly different course on their application website. I was able to speak directly to the course leader who asked me some questions about my interest in the subject, AS and A Level grades, and informed me about course content.
About my course
After meeting with the course leader who told me all about the course and opportunities within the department, I chose Social Psychology because I didn't like the science aspect of psychology! Loughborough is only one of three UK universities where Social Psychology is BPS accredited, so it really appealed to me. Along with this, the opportunity to have a sandwich year made it very attractive as that was one thing I’ve always wanted with my course.
What I enjoy most about my course are the people! I like being assigned groups for coursework as it makes it easier to meet people. I also think the lecturers and moderators are very helpful as they are always willing to give advice, feedback or support on anything you ask about.
Tips for clearing
Take your time and think about it. I easily got caught up in the thought of not going to university if I didn't make my final decision ASAP, therefore stressing myself out and not fully researching my options. Take the day to look into the new options; use the website, student forums, advice and experiences from past students, student satisfaction and league tables. Fully consider and make your final decision based on where you see yourself for three years or more.
What happened after clearing
I had a few weeks to get used to the fact I was actually going to university and research more about Loughborough. I was later able to apply for accommodation which took a few days to organise. After a few phone calls and emails this was all sorted and I got exactly what I need and wanted. I then had to organise extra support for dyslexia and mental health, which only required emails to the heads of these offices. After that I was on my own to prepare myself for a big step in my life, but regularly received helpful emails from different University departments in order to help me get organised for September.