Choosing a University: What You Need To Know

With our brains filled with thoughts of UCAS, exam results and open days, it can be a stressful time in our lives. Don’t panic just yet, as we have the lowdown on choosing the right university for you.

Home or away?

First of all, it’s important to decide whether you’d like to leave home or not. This can be a daunting prospect but bear in mind, everyone else is in the same boat as you. It’s important to decide, if you do want to move out, how you’re going to fund this.

Facilities first

When it comes to picking a university, there are several factors you should consider during the decision making process. Think facilities. Would you like to use a gym whilst on campus? Do you require car park access? Do you see yourself studying in the grounds of the university? Are you interested in finding out about social activities the university has to offer? It’s important to find out what facilities different universities offer so you can see which ones fulfil your needs.

Money matters

University in big cities can offer amazing night life and a real cultural experience, but living in the city means higher living costs. This is something you should consider before deciding what university is for you. Although the idea of studying in the heart of London might sound appealing, the high costs may make budgeting more difficult.

You, you, you!

‘But I’ll miss my friends!’ We all think it as we leave school to move onto further education, you’re not alone! Before you and your pals all head off to study in the same city, make sure you put on your adult thinking cap. Choose to study a course that YOU want to study where YOU want to study it and try not to be influenced by any other factors. The beauty of university is you’re with likeminded people who are interested in the same things you are, so making new friends is no problem at all. Making time for school friends is always important, but be sure to go down the path you want to, and not follow the herd!

Open days

Make the most of university open days. As well as being great fun (as well as the potential to nab some free pens!) the open days give you the opportunity to look around and get a feel for different universities before you come to a final decision. When you’re visiting, make sure you ask lots of questions, find out where the department you are interested in studying is located and if you’re going to stay in halls, find out what they’re like too. Make sure to ask yourself, can I see myself studying here? Normally one or two universities will jump out over the others.

Good rep?

League tables and the reputation a university has are also important factors you should consider before deciding where you’re heading off. Some specific university courses are renowned worldwide for their excellence whilst the university itself might not be a top ranking one, so don’t necessarily dismiss a university because it’s not top of the league, research the individual course first. Also, it’s important to check what percentage of university students go on to get jobs after leaving. You can check these stats at www.push.co.uk/Uni-chooser.

More information on choosing a university:

www.ucas.ac.uk

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