Teachers and supporters

Explore MAP resources and case studies for teachers or supporter of students who live or study in Greater Manchester.

MAP timeline 2020-21

November 2020

Applications open.

MAP online recruitment talks take place. You can access a pre-recorded MAP webinar or email us to request a webinar and live Q and A session for your school or college.

December Applications close on Sunday, 13 December at 11.59pm
January–March 2021 Applications reviewed and places confirmed
April–October  Compulsory and optional events take place

Decision Manchester takes place. Students will have the opportunity to get an early decision on their application to The University of Manchester.

Link Coordinators will be contacted regarding students' predicted grades.
October MAP completed

MAP talks

Due to the ongoing situation with COVID-19, the MAP Team will not be visiting schools and colleges in person this year to deliver MAP talks, however we will be providing a range of online resources for schools and colleges including:

  • live and pre-recorded MAP webinars and videos;
  • downloadable resources – MAP Presentations (PDF versions) and information for your school / college newsletter or bulletin are also available on request.

Please email map@manchester.ac.uk if would like any other information about the programme for your pupils.

Case study

Joanne Boyes – Careers Manager at Oldham Sixth Form College 

Background information

I am the Careers Manager at Oldham Sixth Form College and I advise and support students at the college with their UCAS applications. I have been the MAP Link Coordinator at the college for several years and I’ve seen hundreds of students progress through and benefit from the scheme.

Can you tell us a little more about your role as a MAP Link Coordinator?

I’m the person who promotes the scheme to students each year. I advertise on the screens around college, send electronic information to students and I also tell parents about it at information evenings. There are a lot of students who hear about MAP from others who have previously participated in the programme and I think everybody who’s ever done MAP recommends it to the next group of students, so there is a lot of word of mouth publicity!

What are the advantages of MAP for your students?

For many students the flexibility with grades makes a big difference to them, and the reduced admissions offer is very appealing. The advantage that all students benefit from is having visited the University as they become so much more independent in terms of travelling on their own, talking to people and generally finding their feet. I often talk to students when they are just thinking about applying to join the Manchester Access Programme and they sometimes feel quite daunted by the idea, however,  when they do  take that step to actually apply and get on to the programme I think they really grow and become ready to make the most of university. They definitely, as a result of participating in MAP, are in a stronger position to hit the ground running when they start their undergraduate studies compared to students who haven’t completed MAP.

Particular memories

It’s really nice when I see students who get their ‘Decision Manchester’ answers through MAP and are able to find out in advance of applying to Manchester whether they will be invited to interview or be made an offer for their chosen course. Applying to university can be a difficult time and when students come to tell me that they have received an offer and just need to get the grades it’s great. Receiving this early decision helps them to focus fully on their studies and achieving the grades they need.


Teachers and supporters are advised to read the eligibility criteria for students.

A student doesn’t meet the GCSE requirements but is resitting, can they still apply?

Students should meet all of the essential criteria at point of application in order to be eligible to apply. However, in order to recognise the disruption to exams this year we will consider applications from students who are taking GCSE exams in the autumn exam series and who receive their results by Thursday, 11 February 2021. If results are delayed beyond this point we may prioritise those applicants who already meet the essential criteria.

Autumn exams refers to GCSE examinations undertaken before the end of 2020 by students who are unhappy with their Centre Assessed Grades. These are considered as a first attempt rather than a resit.

Centre Assessed Grades must be provided on the application form. Registration for an autumn exam must also be indicated for each subject attempted by the applicant in order for us to consider them for MAP.

A student doesn’t meet the essential criteria but has extenuating circumstances, can they apply?

If students do not meet all of the essential criteria, but have experienced difficult family or individual circumstances that they believe may affect their performance in exams or the likelihood of going to university, we can still consider their application to MAP on an individual basis. The student should give some brief details in the appropriate section of the application form.

Do you consider the impact of COVID-19 as part of extenuating circumstances?

We are unable to consider the general disruption caused by COVID-19 as personal extenuating circumstances. This is recognising that all students across the country have been affected by this. However, if you consider the impact of the pandemic on a student’s personal circumstances to be extreme then we may be able to make an exception. Circumstances we would consider extreme include:

  • they have experienced serious illness and spent a prolonged period in hospital as a result of COVID-19;
  • they have suffered a close family bereavement due to COVID-19;
  • they have significant caring responsibilities as a result of COVID-19 (e.g. caring for someone extremely clinically vulnerable/shielding);
  • it has created or exacerbated a very difficult or dangerous living situation;
  • it has created or exacerbated a mental health condition as diagnosed by a healthcare professional.

If the above circumstances apply to one of your students, please encourage them to indicate this on their application form and provide details as requested. We will consider circumstances on a case by case basis. Please note, students must be willing to detail their circumstances and may be asked to provide supporting evidence to determine their eligibility.

Can students with alternative/foreign qualifications apply?

Students with appropriate equivalent qualifications to GCSEs should be encouraged to make an application and these qualifications will be considered during the assessment of their application.

How do I request a MAP talk at my school or college?

MAP recruitment talks run from October to early December. If you would like a member of the team to deliver an online talk to you school or college, you will be able to book this from November 2020 by emailing map@manchester.ac.uk. If you would like to receive email updates with more information about this, then you can join our MAP teacher mailing list.


Further information

If you want to find out more about the Manchester Access Programme, please email map@manchester.ac.uk.

You can also read our general information about the University for teachers.