What is UCAS Extra? An essential guide

If you’re not holding any offers and have used up all your UCAS choices, then Extra could be for you.

UCAS Extra is a free service that allows you to apply for another higher education course even if you’ve used up your initial five choices. Essentially another opportunity for you to get a place at university or college, you’re eligible to use Extra if you originally applied through UCAS and are currently not holding an offer, or you're waiting to hear back on any of your first five applications.

You can apply for UCAS Extra between 25 February and 4 July, and if you don’t receive any offer after going through UCAS Extra, you will still be able to apply for a university place through Clearing.

How does Extra work?

Applying through Extra gives you the opportunity to gain a place at university before your results are available, and without waiting until Clearing.

There’s no need to apply to use UCAS Extra – instead, simply go to the Choices section of your UCAS tracking page and if you’re eligible the ‘Add Extra Choice’ option will automatically appear. From here, you can search for a course using the UCAS search tool and add your choice on UCAS Track.

Who can use Extra?

If you’ve used up your five regular UCAS choices and are not holding any offers because you have withdrawn from them, declined them or have not yet received an offer, you are eligible to go through UCAS Extra.

If you didn’t use all of your choices in your original application, as long as it’s before 30 June and you haven’t already accepted or declined any offers then you can simply sign in to your application and add another choice. However, be aware that if you only applied to one choice initially and want to add more then you’ll be expected to pay the extra £6 application fee.

If you don’t hold any offers after 5 July, you will also be able to add an additional choice through Clearing.

How do I access UCAS Extra?

From 25 February, log in to UCAS Track and if you're eligible the option to apply through Extra will become available to you.

In the Choices section of UCAS you should be able to see a button to ‘Add an Extra choice’. Simply follow this link and enter the details of your chosen course, then your application will be sent off. Be mindful that you can only apply for one course at a time, though if you wish to withdraw your choice or are unsuccessful you’re able to choose another.

How to add more choices in Extra

  • Use the UCAS search tool to find a course you want to apply to. Be sure to use the filter ‘Show courses with vacancies’ for this.
  • Contact the universities and colleges to check if they’ll consider your application.
  • Apply for your new chosen course and add the details for your application.

Tip: If you’re applying to a new subject, it’s well worth adding in a new personal statement to make sure your application is as specific and relevant as possible. Well considered, tailored applications always work best!

What happens after I've sent off my Extra application?

Once you’ve sent off your application it’s over to the university or college to review.  Your chosen university has 21 days to make a decision and get back to you.

When you receive an offer, you can firmly accept or decline it. You have until 20 July to do this, after which time the offer will be automatically withdrawn and you will be entered into Clearing.

  • If you receive an offer, respond back and subject to meeting your entry requirements you’ve got a place.
  • If you receive an offer but no longer want to accept it, you can simply decline.
  • If you’re not offered a place you can continue searching for a suitable course and add in another Extra choice.

How to make ARU your Extra choice

From 25 February, log in to UCAS Track and if you're eligible the option to apply through Extra will become available to you. You’ll then be able to search for one of our courses on the UCAS search tool and add your choice on UCAS Track.

If you need any help or guidance or would like to find out about any of our courses, please call us on 01245 686868 or take a look at our course pages. You can also read about UCAS Extra on the UCAS website.

UCAS Extra FAQs

Still unsure what UCAS Extra is all about? Worry not, we’ve answered some of the most commonly asked questions below.

How many courses can I apply to through Extra?
As many as you’d like! There’s no limit to the number of courses you can apply to through Extra.

Can I apply to multiple courses at once?
You’re only able to apply for one course at a time, though if you wish to withdraw your choice or are unsuccessful you can then choose another. This means you won’t be able to select a first choice and an insurance offer like you did in the first round of applications.

>What happens when I accept an offer through Extra?
If you accept an offer through Extra and meet your grade requirements then you’re expected to take your place there and will therefore be ineligible for Clearing.

What can I do if I haven’t heard back on my application?
Your chosen college or university has 21 days to get back to you on an application. While you’re able to withdraw your Extra application at any stage it’s always worth contacting your chosen university or college directly beforehand to check that an offer isn’t on its way to you.

Is there a deadline for responding to an offer received in Extra?
Yes – the date you need to respond by is shown in your application. If you don’t reply by this date your offer will automatically be declined.

Can I still go through Clearing if I have a UCAS Extra offer?
When you accept an offer through Extra you’ve committed to that university or college and, assuming you meet the conditions of their offer, you will be placed with them. If you don’t meet the conditions of their offer, you will then be automatically eligible for Clearing.

You're only able to apply through Clearing if you have no offers, so you would need to negotiate with your firm choice to see if you would be able to arrange a release instead before being able to enter the Clearing process. However, this process can take up to ten days and there’s no reversing it once your choice has been made, so it’s worth considering your options fully before making a final decision.




If you’re not able to find anything through Extra, don’t worry as there will likely be university places available during the Clearing process which opens in early July every year.

Our application experts are here Monday-Thursday 9am-5pm, and Friday 9am-4.30pm. You can reach us at answers@aru.ac.uk or on the phone through 01245 686868.