Below is a list of commonly used words and phrases, together with a summary of their meanings.
Apply: the online application system for applying for higher education courses. Apply and its supporting information can be accessed here.
Adjustment: applicants who have met and exceeded the conditions of their firm choice are given an opportunity to look for an alternative place while holding their original confirmed place.
Clearing: a system used towards the end of the academic cycle. If you have not secured a place, it enables you to apply for course vacancies.
Conditional offer: an offer made by a university or college, whereby you must fulfil certain criteria before you can be accepted on the relevant course.
Confirmation: when conditional offers that you have accepted become unconditional or are declined. Confirmation is dependent on your qualification/exam results.
Entry Profiles: comprehensive information about individual courses and institutions, including statistics and entry requirements. Entry Profiles are found on Course Search.
Extra: the opportunity to apply for another course if you have used all five choices and not secured a place. Extra runs from the end of February until the end of June.
Firm offer: the offer that you have accepted as your first choice.
Institution: a university or college offering higher education courses.
Insurance offer: the offer that you have accepted as your second choice, in case you do not meet the requirements for your firm offer.
Invitation: an invitation from a university or college to attend for interview, audition, or provide a portfolio, essay, or other piece of work.
Personal ID: a 10-digit individual number assigned to you when you register to use Apply. It is printed on every letter we send you. You will be asked to provide this number if you contact our Customer Contact Centre.
Point of entry: your year of entry to the course, for example, 2 refers to the second year of the course.
Scheme Code: used in conjunction with your Personal ID to uniquely identify your application.
Track: a system where you can track the progress of your application online, reply to any offers received, and make certain amendments, for example, change of address or email.
Unconditional offer: an offer given to you by a university or college if you have satisfied the criteria and can attend the course.
Unistats: a website for students who want to research and compare subjects and universities before deciding where to apply. You can also look at student satisfaction ratings and explore the figures about getting a graduate job after completing a course. Visit the Unistats website
Unsuccessful: you have not been accepted by the university or college concerned.
Withdrawal: either you or a university/college cancels a choice before a decision has been made - a reason will be included if the withdrawal was issued by an institution.