STEP 2: SIGNING UP You should sign up to UCAS in plenty of time to allow you to go through all the sections and get them as you want before it is sent off. Ideally you want to do this pretty soon after you go back to college for your second year as it can take a little while to get to grips with the whole system and you will have a good amount of time to decide your university choices and suchlike before the deadline.  The website can be found at: www.ucas.com.  

To register fully you will need to ask your college for their UCAS number and password, this is needed so you can access the different sections that need filling in on the site. To find it out ask somebody like your form tutor or your student support leader and they should be able to let you know. You can fill in all of your personal details too such as: your name, your address and date of birth and you will be provided with a personal username and the password of your choice. It is worthwhile storing this password somewhere safe as you will need it every time you want to access your personal part of the site. Once you have filled in the registration then you will be sent a letter through the post confirming this. Enclosed should be a booklet that will help you understand UCAS and what exactly it provides for you: it also helps you to know what happens stage by stage during your application. Keep this letter safe as you may want to refer back to it in the future.  

Have a good look through the different sections of the website upon signing up so you can see exactly what information you will need during the process and also so you familiarise yourself with it. It might benefit you to fill in as much as you can right at the beginning to give you more time to work on parts such as your personal statement. Bear in mind what still remains to be done and start working on it in advance if you have time. The earlier you finish the application the earlier it can be sent off so you are rid of the stress of it.  

If there is anything that you are unsure of then make a note of it as you see it. You can then send an enquiry to UCAS or ask one of the staff at college so you can get an explanation. Don’t worry about seeming unintelligent as it is something new to you and it is good to make sure that you understand exactly what you are doing as it is something that is a big part of your future. Most people will be in the same boat as you so discuss the process with your peers and maybe arrange to help each other out by having a look over each other’s applications so you can see if there are any things you have done differently or something that may be wrong; it is always useful to have a critical eye as you may miss silly little mistakes on your own application that others will spot. This will be particularly useful at later stages such as your personal application as advice from others can help you review how your application is seen by others and so, potentially, how the university might view you as a person from what you are saying about yourself.

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