2024 to See Traditional UCAS Personal Statements Replaced
The UK’s university application overseer, UCAS, revealed on January 12th, 2023, that the mandatory submission of Personal Statements would be replaced with a multi-tiered questionnaire. In this piece, we’re going to explore how this new system will operate, when it will be introduced, and what implications it may have on your application.
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On January 12th, 2023, UCAS announced that the current method of submitting Personal Statements during your university application is going to be swapped with a multi-part questionnaire.
Since 1993, UCAS has obligated university hopefuls in the UK to submit a 4,000-character Personal Statement, a document that the university admission panels would review and use as a critical factor in their selection process.
However, UCAS has confirmed that a change in this procedure is imminent, potentially taking effect as early as 2024.
Key Changes To UCAS Personal Statements
Traditional UCAS Personal Statements will be swapped out for a more segmented questionnaire, allowing applicants to delve into various aspects of their application.
This adjustment will take place in the 2024 admissions cycle for the 2025 academic year in the UK. This alteration will impact all prospective students, whether from the UK or abroad, who are planning to study in a UK university from 2025 onward.
Students will need to adapt to answering these specific questions as opposed to drafting traditional Personal Statements.
Educators will have to acquaint themselves with this new system and support their students to increase their chances of success.
At Britannia, we are diligently monitoring these developments and will revise this guide as new information emerges. We also ensure that our support mechanisms are current and efficient at guiding students through these adjustments.
What Will Substitute Personal Statements?
In contrast to the other significant changes to the 2024 admission process – such as the discontinuation of various admission tests like BMAT, UCAS has outlined their plan to replace traditional Personal Statements.
In summary, the current requirement of a 4,000-character essay will be supplanted by a series of particular questions that applicants must respond to. You’ll still write your answers, but the focus will be on answering targeted questions instead of having to outline and construct a comprehensive statement.
Details about this new system, like the number of questions and their character limits, have not yet been disclosed. The exact questions are also not confirmed, as they’re still under development. However, we do have some indication of the primary themes these questions will address (derived directly from the UCAS report):
- Motivation for Course – What’s your reason for choosing these courses?
- Preparedness for Course – How has your previous learning prepared you to excel in these courses?
- Preparation through Other Experiences – What additional activities have you undertaken to prepare, and why are these experiences beneficial?
- Extenuating Circumstances – Is there any context the universities should be aware of to better understand your achievements and experiences so far?
- Preparedness for Study – What measures have you taken to gear up for student life?
- Preferred Learning Styles – Which learning and assessment methods are best for you, and how do your course choices reflect that?
In a nutshell, UCAS is switching gears and making some major changes to how you apply to university. The traditional Personal Statements we’ve been used to are set to be replaced by a detailed questionnaire. These changes could be coming into play as early as the 2024 admissions cycle, meaning if you’re thinking of heading to university in 2025, it’s going to affect you. But no stress! We’re here to help navigate through these changes.
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