Your UCAS Number & Status Code Explained

If you plan on applying to university this year from a state, grammar or private school, then you’ll need to get familiar with the application process. At fist it can seem pretty daunting, especially if you’re not used to some of the terminology used throughout the process.

Some key terms that will emerge during your application are your UCAS number and your UCAS status code. Here, we will explain what these terms are, how they relate to your application and where to find them.

Where and how do you find your UCAS number?

Your UCAS number is generated as part of your application and is only created once you register and begin the process. It is a ten-digit code and is unique to you and does not change throughout your application from registering to accepted placement from your future university.

When you log into your UCAS account at https://ucas.com you UCAS number will be displayed on the homepage for you. It will also be present when you track your application progress or review any settings for your user account.

Once you have this number keep it confidential, it does not need to be shared with anyone externally outside of UCAS or your supervisor, as doing so could be a security risk. If and when you do need to reference your UCAS number it is best to do this by logging into your account each time.

Is UCAS ID and UCAS number the same thing?

Although they are very similar, your UCAS ID and UCAS number are not the same thing. Many people will refer to them interchangeably, but knowing the difference is important as it can stop you referencing the wrong information.

Your UCAS ID is your ‘user’ that you use to login to the service online, whereas the UCAS number is the ten-digit unique tracking ID that is paired with your application.

If you ever have a query and a UCAS agent asks for your UCAS application number then you know to look for your 10-digit reference, and not your user ID.

How do you find your UCAS status code?

Similarly, your UCAS status code is separate to your UCAS application number. The status code is generated when you receive a successful offer of placement from a university.

There are two parts to your UCAS status code – a four-digit and sixteen digit code, both of which have separate purposes.

Your 4-digit status code can be used to set up a student bank account, it is used to prove to the bank that you are actually at or enrolling at university. This is important as banks offer special perks for student bank accounts such as an interest free overdraft and dedicated discounts.

Your 16-digit status code is also used for financial purposes, this time to apply for your student loan. Without a 16-digit UCAS status code you won’t be eligible for a student loan.

This measure is in place to stop people applying for easy/low-cost credit without actually being at university.

It should go without saying that as these codes allow you to open bank accounts and take out loans they should NEVER be shared with anyone except reputable banks and the government backed student loan providers.

What is the point of a UCAS number?

You UCAS number is essential as a unique identifier for you throughout your application process. Without it you would have no reference when querying anything with UCAS staff or support, therefore it’s important to have to hand.

It is also very useful for the administrators at UCAS and admissions staff at universities to help process your application quickly and efficiently. If you tried to apply without a UCAS number things would be significantly delayed and have issues.

How to keep your UCAS number safe?

Your UCAS number is confidential, and you should not share it with anyone. It is a unique identifier that ensures that your application is processed accurately and efficiently. To keep your UCAS number safe, you should follow these simple steps:

  • Do not share your UCAS number with anyone, including friends and family.

  • Do not write down your UCAS number in a public place.

  • Keep your UCAS number secure, such as in a password-protected document or folder.

  • If you suspect that your UCAS number has been compromised, contact UCAS immediately.

What to do if you can’t find your UCAS number?

It might happen that you are locked out of your account (which you would use your UCAS ID and password to get into), and don’t have a record of your UCAS number either. In this situation you’re going to have to try and retrieve some or all of these details.

If you find yourself in this unfortunate situation here are some steps you can take to resolve the issue:

  • Check your emails for correspondence from UCAS, some of this may contain your UCAS ID or application number which would allow you to start the recovery process.

  • Contact UCAS directly, probably via telephone is the best way as they will have to take you through certain security questions to send you out a way to reset or regain access to your application and account.

  • Alternatively your supervisor at school may be able to help retrieve the data you need without you having to contact UCAS directly yourself.

Final Words

You UCAS number and UCAS status code are both vital pieces of information that you will need throughout your journey of finding and applying to a university. They are unique to you and should be kept safe at all times.

If you ever have any difficulty retrieving them or find yourself locked out of your account then talking to UCAS directly is the best course of action. Be sure to never give away this information to anyone who reaches out to you, and only ever provide it if you are sure you are dealing with UCAS themselves, a reputable bank or student loan company.