The law application
No matter what stage of decision you are regarding your future law degree, everyone who is planning to go to university is required to apply via UCAS. The sooner you start filling in the forms, the more time you have to think over each decision and seek advice. Now if you're on AllAboutLaw.co.uk, you've probably decided that a law degree is right for you – which is great! You're already ahead of some students, and you can begin your UCAS application whenever you're ready. You can start your application early on in the year, but you won't be able to submit it until early September – check the UCAS website for specific deadlines for this year.
The UCAS application forms for law
Knowing which course you want to do is great, but you don't actually need this information to start your application. The first thing you have to do is sign up for an account – just like everything on the Internet, you'll need a valid email address. You'll then be required to provide personal details like your name, address and date of birth (hopefully you know these answers off the top of your head). If you're at school, college or sixth form, then your institution will you give you a buzzword so that your application gets linked to them properly.
Choosing your courses and universities for law
This is the part where you make it clear that you're applying for law – hurray! However you'll also need to know which universities and the specific courses you want to apply to – whether you're doing the traditional LLB, or a BA in Law, or a joint honours. Luckily, you can come back to this section later if you haven't fully made your mind up.
You get five choices, but you don't have to add them in any order and the universities you apply to won't know your other four choices. You'll notice that you add courses by 'course code' – make sure you get this correct! Although a lot of law degrees at different universities will share the same code (usually 0M100 for the LLB), there can be slight differences. We have a lot of helpful information to help you choose a university for law if you're still struggling.
After you've done this (or skipped it to come back later) you'll have to fill out your education information. You'll need to crack those GCSE certificates out and find out which exam boards you're doing your A Levels with. Don't worry – you don't need your grades yet, you can just saying they're pending.
Writing your law personal statement
Your personal statement is probably the most important (and, sadly, the hardest) part of your UCAS application. This is approximately 500 words in which you have to prove why you're a good candidate for the university's law course. Yeah, pretty scary. We have lots of information on writing the perfect personal statement for law, but we'd recommend you get guidance from a teacher, or at least have someone on hand to read through your drafts.
Your teachers will then write you a reference – essentially another personal statement, but from their point of view. You won't be able to read this, but it's highly unlikely they're going to say anything mean. It might be worth being as well-behaved as possible though.
Now obviously you're starting your application very far in advance, because you're just that organised. But it's worth having the deadlines in mind, which as mentioned you can find on the UCAS website.
The general deadline for law applications is mid-January – for applications to courses beginning in 2017, it's 15 January.
If you're applying to do law at Oxford or Cambridge, the deadline is earlier – usually the second week of October. For application to courses beginning in 2017, it's 15 October. You need to submit your whole application at this point – so even though you're applying to four non-Oxbridge universities, your personal statement and references need to be ready.
There is a way around this though – you can send your full application off but leave some blank spaces in your course choices, and then add them later. That means if you know you want to apply to Oxbridge, you can put this choice in, but add your other four after October.
Universities will start sending out offers as soon as they have applications, but they must have responded to your application by early May (5 May this year). If you receive all of your offers by the end of March however, you'll need to have selected your firm and insurance choice by this date.
Is that all there is to my UCAS application for law?
There are a few more things – sorry.
You do have to pay to use UCAS – it's around £23 for a full application or £12 if you are only applying for one course.
When your offers start coming in, you'll receive an email from UCAS telling you that your application has updated. You'll need to log into your UCAS account to find out if this is an offer or a rejection though, so keep your login details to hand.
Well, we've tried to make this sound as easy as possible, but there's always a chance you'll have questions we haven't answered. We have more information about the UCAS process over at AllAboutCareers.com, and the UCAS website should be able to provide anything else you need.