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Catching up after Clearing: How to get up to speed at short notice

Joining a course through Clearing might feel like you’re a small step behind in the university application process, but that doesn’t have to be the case. With these tips from our dedicated Student Information team, you can be sure to get yourself sorted and caught up for when you start your studies.

By Cara Fielder. Published 25 August 2023. Last updated 25 August 2023.

Get online

Once you accept your place, you’ll receive an email with the link to our online system, ELITE. From here, you can activate and access your student email and take a look at your class timetable. Syncing these with your phone is a great idea so that you get notifications of any last-minute changes.

When you start with us you will also get a Student Journey Advisor (SJA). Your SJA is your dedicated, named point of contact for advice and guidance before and during your course. They will guide and support you through your time with us, ensuring that you have the best possible experience.

You can also join your campus Facebook group to start talking to people on your course or follow us on our other social media platforms to keep up with what’s going on at the university.

Find accommodation

If you’re moving into student accommodation, you will need to determine your budget and start looking for a place to stay immediately. Our Studentpad webpage is a great place to start because you can find approved accommodation near each of our campuses, as well as accessing plenty of advice on things like council tax and TV licensing.


If you’re taking out a student loan to pay for your course, you’ll need to apply as soon as you can. As every situation is different, it’s best to email our Student Finance team if you have any questions or queries. If you’ve already made arrangements for a student loan but you’ve changed course or university, you’ll need to inform your loan provider as soon as possible. Give them a call as soon as you receive confirmation of your new course details.

As a university student, you’re entitled to an NUS TOTUM card, which offers discounts at over 250 shops, restaurants, bars, hotels, gyms and tons of other places. TOTUM offers three membership levels. TOTUM Digital app is completely free and available to verified UK students and includes loads of top brand discounts and offers. TOTUM includes a complete list of student discounts and offers, a free 12-month International Student Identity Card (ISIC) bolt-on and the option to include PASS-accredited Proof of age ID too. TOTUM PRO is for professional learners and members of some professional organisations. It includes access to loads of fantastic discounts and offers from a huge range of high street and online brands. Prices for TOTUM and TOTUM PRO start at £14.99.

If you’re a full-time student living in London, you can save 30% off your travel with a student Oyster card, so it’s worth the investment right from the start.

Prep your paperwork

There are a bunch of documents you’ll need to have organised for your first day. Be sure to bring your passport or driving licence, your birth certificate and your eligibility documents to your induction date. You’ll also be sent a few pre-enrolment tasks to complete, including uploading your photo so we can have your student ID card ready for when you arrive.

Get stuck in

Employers will value engagement in activities outside of your course, which is why we offer a variety of clubs & societies for you to join when you start. Sign up to as many as you can, give them a try, then stick with your favourites. The Students' Union will be available at the Fresher’s Fair to tell you what’s available and talk about what you might be interested in setting up.


If you’re interested in applying through Clearing, give us a call and speak to one of our friendly Clearing team on 0808 3019834 or find out more by visiting our Clearing Hub.