My clearing experience – Emily Ferguson

Emily Ferguson and I’m from Scotland is currently studying for a Primary Education degree with a specialism in literacy at the University of Stirling, having just completed her first year.

Emily shares her experience of applying to study through clearing as well as some of her top tips of those who may find themselves in a similar situation.

Why did you choose to enter Clearing?

I didn’t get one of the grades I needed to go to Aberdeen so felt pretty disappointed on exam results day. I had a backup option of studying an Education degree at another university, but it meant I would have had to have done a postgraduate course after to become a teacher.

I had originally wanted to go to Stirling, so when I saw that they had places available through Clearing for primary education I got straight onto the phone and called their Clearing phoneline.

The person on the end of the phone was very friendly and reassuring. I just had to tell them what course I was interested in and what my grades were. They came back to me quickly with an offer of a place to do Primary Education with a specialism in Literacy. I couldn’t believe it! I was so excited that I had been accepted to do the course I really wanted to do. If felt like everything just fell into place.

Stirling guided me through what to do next on UCAS and within days my place at Stirling was confirmed!

What factors made you finally settle on the course you chose?

I really liked that Stirling let you have a specialism as not many other primary education courses offer that. I also knew students already studying the primary education degree at Stirling and they gave it great reviews.

Did you attend a Clearing open day?

I didn’t attend a Clearing open day but had previously gone to one of the open days. I really enjoyed the open day as it let me see everything Stirling has to offer in terms of accommodation, clubs and societies and facilities.

Did you find a place to live easily?

I applied for accommodation on the same day that I got my offer through Clearing. A couple of weeks later I was delighted to have got a place on campus in a flat in Alexander Court. The campus is stunning, and I loved living there. Some of my flatmates have now become great friends and we’re going to be living together in a house in town this year.

How would you describe your time at uni so far?

I have loved my first year at Stirling. The course has been really interesting, and I love that I’m now on my way to my dream job of becoming a primary school teacher. I enjoyed my placement in a nursery and am looking forward to my next placement in a school.

How did you find the Clearing process at the University of Stirling?

Really simple and easy. I checked the website to see what courses were available and the phone number was on that page so just called the clearing team at Stirling. They were really friendly and explained everything to me. I have dyslexia so wanted to know about the support available at Stirling and they put me in touch with the Accessibility and Inclusion team, so I knew what was possible. I was also able to speak to the Accommodation team to see what I had to do to apply for a room.

What tips do you have for students going through Clearing?

Stay calm. It’s not the end of the world if you don’t get the results you needed. There are other options so just do your research on each of the universities’ websites and see what’s out there. Then phone the university to speak to them. Make sure you’ve written down all your questions before phoning them, so you don’t forget anything!

What are you enjoying most about studying at Stirling?

I love the community atmosphere at Stirling. Everyone’s really friendly. You feel totally safe on campus and it’s a stunning place to study. I enjoy shopping in the city of Stirling and there’s good nightlife.

Did you find it easy to make friends at university?

I was lucky as I got some great flatmates and we’ve become good friends. I joined in lots of the activities at Freshers’ Week which was a fab way to meet new people. Also, because we do a lot of group work on my course, I’ve made friends that way too.

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