“Don’t rush the call”
My first advice is don’t rush that call! I wish I hadn’t as I must’ve sounded like a mad woman harping on to Ed (Edward Tolhurst, my course leader). Remember you can only make one first impression. You need to be prepared and try to pre-empt what you are about to be asked (see below for tips). Get your Clearing number ready too, this will make it easier for us to find you.
“Write down your grades and qualifications”
If you’re older like me, I’d advise you to write down all your grades and qualifications! They could be from decades ago so it’s good to make sure you’re clear. Also some may have changed, or not even be on offer. One of the college courses I did has now gone off the curriculum – now I am showing my age. Also write down any other ‘non-academic’ courses that could be relevant. Perhaps you’ve done a first aid course, or a moving and handling course, are up-to-date in data protection or money laundering and have a certificate in this from your workplace. All of this can help if needed, and having it in one place will make your life easier when on the call.
“Make the call yourself”
It sounds daft, but it is essential that you make the call. Don’t ask your parents, friends or anyone else to do it on your behalf. Remember it is you that’s going to be doing the course, and the passion in your voice will come across. Staffordshire University’s Clearing lines do get very busy, so don’t worry if there is a short delay in getting through or being called back. The worst thing you can do is panic and upset yourself. The wait is normal.
“Show your passion for the course”
The chat itself won’t be too formal. Yes, the question of grades and experience – or what you have been doing since leaving education – needs to be asked and, more importantly, needs to be answered honestly. You need to explain why you want to be on the course, why you’re right for the course and why you want to be here at Staffordshire. My advice is to show your passion for the course, regardless of why you are going through the Clearing process. I saw the ad and went for it, but maybe you’re in Clearing for a different reason. If your grades weren’t the best, show you are! We want to know you personally.
“Ask questions and find out about Staffordshire University”
This is also a chance for you to ask any questions. Maybe you want to know about the accommodation, or about the facilities around campus. At the end of the conversation you may be offered a place straightaway, or the advisor may have to come back to you. At Staffs, we’ll email you to confirm your place.
I hope this short blog helps you when you are preparing to make your Clearing call to Staffs.