Tips for choosing your firm and insurance choices

Deciding which of your university offers to accept as your firm and insurance choice can be a big decision! Considering what is right for you is the most important thing. Continue reading for tips for choosing your firm and insurance choice.

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The difference between firm and insurance choice

Firm choice is your first choice university, the university you would most like to study at. If you meet the conditions of the offer (such as the grade requirements) you have a place to study there.

Insurance choice is the university you could study at if you don’t meet the conditions of your firm choice. For this reason, students will typically choose an insurance choice where a university has a lower offer.

Look over all your offers

You may have applied to a maximum of five different universities, and every university varies, even if they offer the same course. Take some time to look at all your offers, here are some aspects you could consider:

  • Location
  • Campus or city based
  • Modules within the course
  • Support services
  • Living costs
  • Employability
  • Course accreditation
  • Student life
  • Accommodation

Visit the universities

Try to visit the universities you choose as your firm and insurance choice, as you may end up studying there! Universities have Open Days and Applicant Days where you can see the facilities, accommodation when speak with Academics and current students. Click here to find out more about upcoming events at the University of Surrey.

Is the offer achievable?

It is important to aim high when choosing your firm choice, but be realistic. Talking with your tutors and teachers is a good way to consider how achievable the offer is for you.

Trust your gut instinct 

Choose the universities that are right for you. It is important to listen to your family and peers on where they can see you studying, but trust your gut instinct as you will be studying there.

Do your research

Find out as much as you can about the universities before selecting your firm and insurance choice. This could be online, visiting the universities on Open Days and Applicant Days, or even contacting the university by phone or email. 

Be aware of any deadlines

Make sure you’re aware of any upcoming application deadlines.


Don’t forget about clearing! If you don’t meet the offers of your firm and insurance choice, you can also go through clearing. Before results day, do some additional research on other courses and universities that you may be interested in. It’s important that you try not to choose a university and course out of panic and it not be right for you.

Student moving in

This blog has gone through some tips for selecting your firm and insurance choice within your UCAS application. Talk to your family, friends, tutors and teachers, but make sure you choose the Universities that are right for you! To read other blogs by current students at the University of Surrey, click here