The Ridgeway School & Sixth Form College R6 Sixth Form

R6 Post 18 Opportunities

What is UCAS?

UCAS is a charity that processes applications to study full-time courses at universities and colleges in the UK. Their aim is to help students make informed choices that are right for them by guiding them through the entire higher education application process and beyond. To support this, they provide a wide range of valuable information and services for applicants, their parents, and teachers.

Students can use to find out how to get started, research options, make an application, and track its progress. There is information for parents at, including details of the application process and a host of helpful video guides.

UCAS Terms Explained

Throughout the application process, students and parents find that they come across a number of terms that they may not be familiar with. Go to to find out what they mean.

How The Ridgeway Sixth Form Team Supports Students with the UCAS Process

All students in Year 12 have the opportunity to attend the UCAS convention, which is usually held in March or April and is run as a school trip. At the convention, students get the opportunity to talk to representatives from higher education establishments as well as ask questions and attend seminars on topics such as student finance. They prepare for the convention during mentoring so they always arrive with plenty of questions and a clear idea of who they want to speak to. We also hold a progression evening in school for parents and students which takes place towards the end of April.

Sixth form mentors and the rest of the sixth form team assist with each step of the UCAS application process. Please see the timeline below for more information on how this goes. There is plenty of support available to students — we encourage them to hand in drafts of their personal statement for comments — and they also let us know about upcoming interviews so that we can set up subject-specific mock interviews.

We can assist former students with applications on UCAS. Please contact us with any queries.

Example UCAS Application Timeline

Summer term of Year 12

  • Register with UCAS and begin online application (usually done in school with mentor group).
  • Choose course and up to five universities. Use UniFrog to research and to help create shortlists.
  • Write the first draft of your personal statement.

Term 1 -3 Year 13

  • Applications open in September.
  • Assistance with setting up admissions tests if required.
  • Mentor will write final reference with input from subject teachers. Student and Head of Year 13 sit down together to send off application.
  • Support for students applying for any course at the universities of Oxford and Cambridge, or for most courses in medicine, veterinary medicine/science, and dentistry with the early deadline of 15th October.
  • Internal school deadline for all UCAS applications is set in November. This is to ensure students get the best chance of university offers.
  • Interviews - Students inform the sixth form team if they have an interview and we arrange mock interviews.
  • Hear back from the universities: conditional, unconditional, or unsuccessful.
  • Student finance applications open in Term 3 and some students require help with this


  • Results day.
  • Clearing or adjustment.


  • University or gap year begins.

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