24 Thursday, 20 August 2009 London Lite Clearing the way to a bright future Education2009 With A-level results released today, KAte ButlAnd, from ucas (universities And Colleges Admissions Service), gives us the lowdown on the clearing process. What is clearing? Clearing is used by applicants who havent secured a place at university or college. it helps students find suitable vacancies on higher education courses. Who can apply? anyone -- whether your results were worse or better than expected, you want to change path, or havent applied for a course at all. When does clearing open and hoW do you get started? For a-level students it starts today. on the Ucas website (ucas.com) there is a list of available courses. Pick out what interests you and contact them about applying through clearing. hoW many places are there? last year we helped 44,000 people find a place and we hope to help a similar number this year. What misconceptions are there about the clearing process? that its settling for second- best. Missing out on your grades isnt the end of the world. Dont panic -- call our free examination results helpline on 0808 100 8000. its important not to rush. Find something you really want to do because you could be at university for the next three to four years. can ucas help With alternatives to university, such as gap years? We helP people who want to go into higher education. But our helpline is staffed by trained career advisers who can discuss other options like taking a year out or acquiring other qualifications. are there any changes to this years process? anyone who exceeded their predicted grades can go through the adjustment process, which is open for five days. it gives them the chance to speak to institutions they didnt think they could get into. universities have tapped into social networking and iphone apps to help students. TwiTTer is being used to guide prospective students through the clearing process. The social networking phenomenon is helping those who have fallen short of their expected grades to find a university place. Thames Valley University (TVU) is just one institution with its own Twitter Clearing Guru, tweeting advice and tips for those needing to navigate clearing. Lynn Grimes, director of marketing and recruitment at TVU, says: Students tend to panic at this time of year and want answers fast, so this is an instantaneous way of communicating with them. weve been tweeting short, sharp answers to FAQs about clearing and you can also say you want to speak to someone and we tweet you. we have students and clearing experts manning the service. regular tweets also give updates on places still available at TVU campuses in west London and reading. Search for TVUclearingguru to find TVU on Twitter. And thats not all. TVU has landed a UK university first by launching an iPhone prospectus app. The application, iUni, pictured, is free to download from Apples app store and features details on TVUs portfolio of courses. The app also allows students to apply online, browse the TVU website, email a careers adviser or call TVU directly. Almost 500 people downloaded the app in the first month. Making the leap: as A-level students across the UK get their results today, 44,000 will find a university place through clearing wordsjamesday A-levelresultsworse-- orbetter--than expected?You canstillfind theidealuni placethrough clearing.Hereshow... index.html2.html3.html4.html5.html6.html7.html8.html9.html10.html11.html12.html13.html14.html15.html16.html17.html18.html19.html20.html21.html22.html23.html24.html25.html26.html27.html28.html29.html30.html31.html32.html33.html34.html35.html36.html37.html38.html39.html