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Unconditional Offers

There is currently a trend for some higher education institutions and universities to make unconditional offers to applicants who are yet to complete their Level 3 qualifications (A-levels, BTECs etc).

However, Central College Nottingham we are only make unconditional offers to applicants who have already met our entry requirements due to the strength of the applications we receive.  We believe strongly that a student should be enrolled on the right course for them, and meeting the entry criteria is a key factor in ensuring you have the right knowledge and skills that will allow you to be successful in higher education.  We appreciate some of you may have received unconditional offers elsewhere, so this is information is designed to help and answer any questions you may have.

Why do some universities and higher education institutions make unconditional offers?

Universities and higher education institutions typically indicate that they are making an unconditional offer because they have been favourably impressed with the candidate’s application and that the unconditional offer is a result of their belief in the applicant’s potential for future success.

While it can be reassuring for applicants to know that one of their UCAS choices is willing to give them an unconditional offer, it is important to fully consider the implications of accepting an unconditional offer in these circumstances.

When deciding which offer(s) to accept we would encourage students to base their decision primarily on the course and institution that they feel represents the best long term opportunity for them to be successful on their course, rather than on whether their place would be automatically guaranteed.

What to consider before accepting an unconditional offer

Students can be tempted to accept an unconditional offer as doing so can help to reduce the pressure in A-Level examinations, as their place on the degree will not be dependent on exam performance.

However, it is important to remember that there may be longer-term consequences if you do not obtain the Level 3 examination results that reflect your aptitude and ability- the final few months of Level 3 study may be essential in preparing you for your degree course, and many graduate employers will consider Level 3 qualifications when shortlisting applicants for graduate schemes.

Finally, you should not feel pressured into making any decisions until you have heard back from all five of your UCAS choices. An unconditional offer should not be time-limited by a university until there is a published UCAS deadline for a decision by the applicant.

What if I accept my conditional offer at Central but don’t get the results to meet the offer?

At Central we only make offers to applicants where we feel their application demonstrates that they are capable of meeting our entry requirements and succeeding on their chosen course.

If you were to choose Central as your firm choice but narrowly miss the conditions of your offer, we may be able to consider whether we could still admit you during the Confirmation and Clearing period in August. This would be dependent on the number of spaces available once all offer holders who had met their offer conditions had been admitted, and as such there is no guarantee that spaces would be available.

If you accept an unconditional by another institution then your insurance choice will be automatically declined, and as such you would no longer hold an offer from Central. You would also be ineligible for Adjustment, and therefore the only route available to study with us would be via Clearing.

Further details on the Clearing process can be found on the UCAS website.

If you have any questions about the application process please email