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Firm and Insurance Offer Holders 

As a Durham offer holder you’ll find important information here about what happens next and some of the things you need to do to make sure the next stage of your student journey with us goes smoothly. 

Keeping us updated

It’s really important that you let us know of any changes in your personal details after you’ve accepted your offer with us. This might be things like a change of residential address, or a change in email address. This is especially important if you’ve been using a school email address and will not have access to it when you leave. You’ll need to let UCAS know, and can contact Durham at Ask Us.

If you need to send us important documents and haven’t already done so, then please do so as soon as possible, including certificates and transcripts once you have these. If you already had relevant qualifications when you applied or have an English language condition, there are earlier deadlines you need to meet. Please check your offer guide for our deadlines.

It’s important to make sure that you’ve sent us everything we need.

If you’ve applied using Common App, your offer guide will tell you how to send us your documents.

If you feel something has negatively affected your exam performance then you need to make sure your school or college let your exam board know about this. If it hasn’t been possible to let your exam board know then you can tell us by completing our mitigating circumstances form.


Confirmation is the process of confirming your accepted (i.e. firm or insurance for UCAS applications) place if you have met the conditions of your offer. If you haven’t met the conditions of your offer then we still need to make a confirmation decision on your application, and we explain here what happens if you find yourself in that situation.

We receive a lot of exam results through UCAS, but we don’t receive all of them. If we don’t receive your exam results through UCAS you’ll need to send yours to us using our document upload facility

If we receive your results before you become firm or insurance with us, we may be able to reflect the change in our decision making:

  • If you send us your results before we make an initial decision on your application, we will consider your actual grades ahead of your predicted grades.
  • If you already have an offer with us, haven’t made your replies yet and now meet some or all of your offer conditions then we are able to update your offer to reflect this.

Unfortunately, if you were initially unsuccessful, we wouldn’t be able to reconsider your application unless the course was open at UCAS and you submit a new application to us.

We understand that examination boards may be unable to tell you what your exam results are on the day you expect them. If this happens, we will be able to hold your offer until 31 August 2021.

Normally when results are late, they are delayed only by a day or two. Once your results are confirmed, please contact us to let us know as we do not receive notification from UCAS. 

If your initial results are due to be released by your exam board between 1 and 8 September, we cannot guarantee 2021 entry and you might be offered a place for 2022. Beyond this date, we may not be able to accept your grades but will consider these on a case by case basis.

Met your conditions?

If you meet the conditions of your offer then your place will be confirmed and you will be able to see this at UCAS Hub (for Common App we will email you the outcome). For conditional firm offer holders this means that you’re on your way to Durham! 

If you’re holding an insurance place with us and are confirmed by your firm choice then we’d like to offer our congratulations and best wishes for a happy and successful undergraduate career at your chosen university. We hope you’ll consider postgraduate study with us at a later time.

If you’re an insurance offer holder and your firm choice doesn’t accept you, but you are accepted by Durham, then you’ll become unconditional firm with us. We know you’ll love studying at Durham.

Unconditional firm offer holder

For all unconditional firm offer holders (including if you used to be conditional firm or conditional insurance) there’s still some important things you need to do, including:

  • Completing your Offer Acceptance Form. You’ll need to do this within 7 days of receiving your confirmed decision. It’s important you do this as this is the step that creates your student record to allow you to enrol. 
  • Choosing your accommodation preferences. Look out for emails from your college and make sure you’ve completed everything you need to.
  • You'll need your User ID and Pin to access this portal, which was sent by email to offer-holders in early August. Please check your junk mail if you can't find it in your inbox. If you're unable to log into the Portal, please try a different browser - we've found that Chrome works best.

Note, if you were accepted after narrowly missing your grades or were originally insurance with us, then it can take some time for your college to be allocated whilst we identify where there are spaces available. This means that once you’ve submitted your Offer Acceptance Form you may not move onto Enrolment immediately whilst your college allocation is considered.

Haven't met your conditions?

Durham has been very popular as a firm choice this year and we have unprecedented numbers of offer holders who have met our conditions. We have therefore not been able to confirm places for offer holders who have not met all the conditions of their offer. We wish them every success in securing a place at another university.  

The best way to find out your status is by checking your UCAS application (for Common App we will email you the outcome).

If you haven’t received a decision then we’re still considering you. As long as we have received all of your results, we’ll make a decision within seven days of A level results day. If you think we haven’t received all of your results, then please upload them as soon as possible. If you don’t want to wait for our decision then you can complete the Clearing Release Form and we will process an unsuccessful decision on your application so you can take up another place.

Exam Board Appeals and Re-marks

If you’re unsuccessful at confirmation and decide you want the examination board to re-consider the results they have given you, you can request a Priority Re-mark. If you meet the conditions of your offer after a successful regrade then you should send evidence to, with the subject grade appeal outcome as soon as you receive it. 

We are not able to offer 2021 entry to any offer holders who do not meet the conditions of their offer at first issue of results but do so at a later date as a result of an appeal. If the successful appeal is confirmed to the University by 31 August 2021 we will offer 2022 entry. If it is after this date, we may be able to offer 2022 entry, but cannot guarantee this.

We know examination boards may be operating differently during the Covid-19 pandemic. Please check with your school/college and examination board for the correct way to request a re-mark or equivalent.

Important information for EU/international students

If you’re an EU/international student and need a Student Visa, Durham will issue you with a Certificate of Acceptance for Studies (CAS). We’ll contact you shortly after your offer is confirmed to tell you what you need to do. It’s really important that you follow the instructions in this email and reply to us quickly so your CAS is not delayed.

  • Further information on the CAS process and applying for a Student Visa.

College confirmation and deferral opportunities

As a first-year student, you will become a member of one of our 16 Colleges available to undergraduate students and will receive an offer of College-managed accommodation. To help you to make informed choices and to help us to understand demand for places, we would like to share some important information with you.

As you will be aware, there has been unprecedented student success this year. As a result of this we are currently over our total accommodation capacity in some Colleges and if this remains the case, to manage high levels of demand, we will need to move some students to a different College.

How will this affect me?

For most new students, your College will remain as we’ve previously indicated. This includes (as well as some others):

  • If you’re an international student (this is so you can make advance arrangements for travel).
  • If you deferred the start of your course from a previous year.
  • If you’ve already been offered a different College for medical reasons.
  • If you’ve been awarded a scholarship by your current College.

And, wherever possible, if your current indicated College was your first preference.

If this is you, we’ll write again to confirm your College by Tuesday 24 August (if we have not already done so).

If you’re not in one of those groups, we may need to change your membership to a different College (see below: How will this work...). This is due to unprecedented student success this year. Please be assured that each of our Colleges offers an inspiring and supportive community of staff and students from all our subject areas.

How this will work...

Step 1: students whose first preference College wasn’t previously available, but now is, will get their preferred College.

Step 2: we’ll identify an alternative College for some students who didn’t express a preference.

Step 3: we may need to identify an alternative College for students who did express a preference but weren’t allocated to their first choice.

Step 4: we may also need to identify an alternative College for some students currently allocated to their first choice.

If this affects you, we’ll be in touch by Wednesday 1 September. As a reminder, any first-year undergraduate student required to move College this year will be compensated with a £500 cash payment in Autumn term.

New College accommodation

For 2021/22 some Colleges will take up some high-quality, privately-owned accommodation, which will be part of the College.
If this is you, please be assured that:

  • You’ll still be a full member of your College community and have access to all College facilities.
  • Your accommodation agreement will still be with the University and be managed through your College.
  • Your accommodation fees will be the same as those for equivalent rooms in University-owned accommodation.

Where possible, we’ll keep students in privately-owned accommodation together with others from their College; and they’ll benefit from all the services available to students at their main College site.

What next?

However this affects you, you can expect to hear from us by Wednesday 1 September at the latest. In the meantime, we’ll be continuing to work really hard to give you the best possible start to your Durham experience.

If you do have other questions about starting with us, you can contact us by email at This will be monitored Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm (UK time).

Opportunity to defer

Finally, as a reminder, we’re offering you the opportunity to defer your place at Durham until the 2022/23 academic year. If you decide to do this, you will be guaranteed your first choice of College. The deadline for doing so has been extended to 23:59 (UK time) on Thursday 2 September.

How to defer...

If you have not yet received your University log-in details you will need your User ID and Pin to access the form on your Applicant Portal, using the details previously sent.

If you have already received your University IT log-in details then you will need to use these to access the form. Please follow the instructions and link to the form in this guide.