What to do if you don't get into your dream university?

A-level results day is on the horizon so you may be wondering what you can do if you don’t get into your firm choice university, or in other words, your dream university. We’re here to tell you ways you can deal with this outcome and discuss the options that are available to you if you find yourself in this position.  

Stick with us and we’ll make all your worries disappear.  

Rejection from dream university

1. Stay Positive 

First of all, what university you go to doesn’t determine your success or how happy you will be. Try not to get to upset or stressed out if you find yourself being rejected from your first-choice university. 

Don’t beat yourself up if you didn’t get in, speak to yourself the same way you would speak to a friend in your position, with positivity and compassion – “It’s okay you tried your best; everything will work out”. 

You’ll no doubt still have an amazing student experience no matter which school you go to as university is largely what you make of it. Keep your chin up and don’t let yourself get too worked up about things. We will have positive vibes only, please!

Positive vibes

2. Face Your Feelings 

Okay we know we just said you should stay positive, and you should, but you should also face your feelings head on and give yourself time to process everything. It’s important to let out how you feel sometimes, allow yourself to feel upset and get it out into the open. 

Remember that how you’re feeling is valid, it’s a hard thing to face and come to terms with as it impacts your future and journey. These feelings of rejection will be like that of a breakup or getting declined from a job offer that you really hoped for, so take time to grieve and accept that how you’re feeling is normal.   

Face your feelings

3. Find Out Why You Were Rejected 

Failing to meet entry requirements is a common reason for being rejected from your top university choice. However, there are other reasons you may be declined an offer which you can keep track on through using UCAS.

Such as, if there are too many applicants and a course ends up being full you may not receive a conditional offer at all. Other reasons may be due to your personal statement or missing the deadline for applications.  

Universities don’t have to give you a reason when they reject students, but you can ask them for feedback if you’re curious about why this has happened. Knowing why you have been rejected may mean you have a better chance at trying again and re-applying next year, if that’s what you want to do.  

Sometimes taking time away is the best thing you can do to focus on yourself and work on any mistakes you encountered with your application for uni.  

Ucas application

4. Talk To People 

It’s good to have a support network when you’re facing things like this. So, you don’t have to deal with everything by yourself and can receive support and advice from those closest to you. Whether its chatting with your friends, family or partner about things, it will make you feel a whole lot better.  

You should also speak with your career’s advisor or teachers at college or sixth form about what you can do and what other options are available. Chances are, they may be able to offer you alternatives that you didn’t think of. They’re experienced with this sort of thing, so speak to them about it!  

Talking to people

5. Don’t Take It Personal 

If you do end up facing the unfortunate option of not getting into your dream university, then don’t take it personally as you won’t be the only one. In 2021 there were over 750 thousand applications for university made within the UK, but only 562 thousand were accepted. 

It’s hard not to take it personally as it’s something that really impacts on your life, but as we mentioned earlier, there are many reasons why an application can be rejected. So, don’t blame yourself.  

Dont take things personally

6. Think About Other Options 

There’s always a silver lining and in this case, if you don’t get into your dream university you may still get accepted by your insurance choice or be able to apply to a different university through UCAS clearing.  

There are other options available to you, like re-sitting exams the following year if you’re set on getting into a specific university and getting certain grades. If you don’t have the required entry requirements for a course, you may be able to do a foundation year.  

Not every course or university will offer a foundation year though, but its best searching to have a look. Unlike undergraduate degrees, you don’t need set entry requirements for foundation degrees so it may be something to look into. 

University options

7. Treat It As A Lesson  

Rejection is something you’ll experience again and again, especially when applying for jobs once you’re a post grad. It’s important to experience being rejected early on to prepare you for setbacks that will occur in later life. You’ll be better equipped with how to deal with obstacles like this, and how best to react.  

You may also find that being rejected from your dream university or course ends up being a good thing for you, as you will experience a whole new place and meet new people than what you originally had planned. 

University experience

8. Enjoy Yourself  

Regardless of your results and whether or not you got into your dream university, you still deserve to have a good summer and make memories. After all, you completed your higher education course and during a global pandemic too, hats off to you!  

Take some time to go out with friends or family or do things that you love, you can’t let this result take over your life. Not getting into your dream uni is something that is partly out of your control, so be in control of your life and how you feel instead. 

Like we said earlier, you’ll most likely enjoy yourself wherever you end up studying for your undergraduate degree or whatever course you end up studying. Keep calm and carry-on guys.  

Enjoying summer

So, that’s it from us for now. We hope you’re feeling prepared for all and any outcomes on a-level results day, but we’re sure you’ll do great. After all, you’ve worked so hard completing your studies!  

Struggling with the current heatwave? Check out our blog on Tips To Beat The Summer Heat In The UK to help you out.  

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