How to apply for an undergraduate course

Person using an iPad

If you're a UK or EU student with settled/pre-settled status, you can apply for our full-time undergraduate degree courses through UCAS.

If you're an international student, please visit our international admissions page for information on how to apply.

Please note that EU students without settled or pre-settled status are now considered international students. See our information for EU students page for more details.

Quick guide to university applications

When you're applying to university, there are a few important things to do and dates to remember. Here's our quick guide:

Do your research

Take your time and so some research when it comes to choosing your university. Use the summer before you apply to strengthen your personal statement, by getting some work experience, whether it's paid or voluntary. It all counts, and it might even give you a taste of your future career. 

Checking out an open day is really helpful as you’ll meet current students and get to talk to the lecturers who teach the courses. You’ll get a real understanding of what you’ll be doing if you choose that course.

Visit one of our undergraduate Open Days to explore the courses on offer, campuses, accommodation and more.

Your application

Before you start, choose a professional-looking email address and dig out your exam certificates for details of grades and exam boards. Then go to UCAS Apply and fill out the application form, where you will be able to select up to five courses.

UCAS is the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service and their website is your portal to the world of higher education.

UCAS Apply

Using UCAS Apply is really simple. The main sections are:

  • Personal details
  • Support needs/requirements
  • Completed qualifications
  • Pending qualifications (including GCSEs if retaking)
  • Paid/voluntary employment
  • Personal statement
  • Payment – the UCAS website has details of application fees

Once you've filled out all the details, simply submit your application and UCAS will pass it on to the universities you're interested in.

If you're interested in transferring to ARU, you can also apply through UCAS. Just let us know which year you're applying for (for example, Year 2). We'll consider applications for advanced entry to most of our courses, though there are a few exceptions: see our transfer page for details.

In 2022 the initial application deadline for most degrees, except some art and design courses, is 26 January. However, it's still possible to apply through UCAS after this date.

Track your application

UCAS Track

Once you’ve hit submit and UCAS has acknowledged receipt of your application, you’ll have access to UCAS Track.

UCAS Track does what it says on the tin: it lets you keep track of your applications and amend some personal details (for example, if you move house or change email address).

Offers can be accepted or declined through UCAS Track, so don't forget to log in regularly and check the status of your applications.

You can also use UCAS Track to register for UCAS Extra. This is a way of making a further choice after you've applied, if you don’t quite find the right course or university at first. You may also apply for a university place through Clearing using UCAS Track, if you are still to receive any offers when Clearing opens.

Once you've applied for a course at ARU, we'll also send you an email inviting you to access our applicant portal. As a student, you can continue to use the portal for useful information such as course timetables.

Type of university offer

In common with other universities, there are three possible decisions we'll make about your application.

1. Conditional offer

You're offered a place if you meet certain conditions, which are usually based on your exams. If you're accepting a conditional offer, you’ll need to meet all the conditions before you start the course. Make sure you understand the requirements.

You may be asked to achieve specific UCAS tariff points (such as 260 points from two A levels), or grades in named subjects (for example, B in chemistry, C in physics). You might need to get specific grades in the individual units that make up these subjects.

2. Unconditional offer

You've met all the academic requirements; your university may contact you for proof of your qualifications.

Find out more about unconditional offers.

3. Unsuccessful

You've not been offered a place on your chose course. You may be eligible for UCAS Extra if your initial applications are unsuccessful, or you can consider applying through Clearing.

Making your final decision

Once you’ve got all your offers you’ll have to reply to each one on UCAS Track. Even if you've received five offers, you're only allowed to keep two. There are three ways that you can respond.

1. Firm acceptance

Your preferred choice. If you're accepting an unconditional offer this’ll be the only place you accept and will be where you’ll study. If you're accepting a conditional offer, this will be your first choice if you meet the conditions.

2. Insurance acceptance

Your back-up choice. This is where you’ll study if you don’t meet the conditions of your conditional firm acceptance but do meet the conditions of your insurance choice. We recommend accepting an insurance choice that's a grade or two below your firm choice. If you don't achieve your predicted grades you'll still have a university place waiting for you.

3. Decline

You can decline offers that you've decided aren't right for you.

Application timeline

Our timeline highlights the main dates and deadlines you'll need to be aware of when applying to university.

UCAS checklist

You might find it helpful to use our simple UCAS checklist. It covers the whole application process from registering with UCAS to getting your offer and confirmation letter.

Part-time and international students

If you're applying for a part-time undergraduate course at ARU, you can usually apply directly to us using the 'Apply online' button on your course page.

If you're an international student, you can find out how to apply by visiting our International admissions page.