Going to university is considered by many to be an essential stepping stone in the transition from school to adult life.
In addition to gaining valuable skills and qualifications for most young people, it offers the opportunity to live away from home in a safe, learning environment.
University is a great place to grow in confidence and learn skills in independence and self-reliance.
However, selecting the right university can be a difficult decision to make. With the enormous range of options available not to mention the cost involved, it is not surprising that many students feeling overwhelmed and anxious about which route to take.
A clear mind and focused plan are definitely required to sift through all the options.
Here are some of our top tips for choosing the best university:
Course content and learning styles
What kind of learner are you? Make sure the course reflects your preferred learning styles.
If you’re a practical learner and prefer coursework and modular exams as you go along, then go for a course that offers this approach rather than a more academic route that only has formal exams at the end.
Future career path
Do you have a future career all mapped out in your head? What will the course enable you to do afterward?
If you know what you want to do- that’s great- go for it. If, like most people, you are not sure yet, a more general route which allows you to specialize later on may be a wise decision.
Do your research
What do other students say about the university you are considering? This Russell Group university list has some useful statistics regarding student and employer satisfaction which you may find useful.
Look at starting salaries and jobs to see the opportunities available and how well-regarded people with your prospective qualifications are in the job market.
Attend the Open Days
Go to Open Days and use the time wisely to find out as much as you can about the course you’re interested in, student life, clubs and societies as well as accommodation.
Look at what other students say in order to get a measure of what life is like beyond the world of the glossy prospectus and open days.
If you know of anyone who has studied your course or gone to a university that you are considering then talk to them. Otherwise, look at online reviews.
Plan your finances
Make sure that you have a budget and plan in place for funding your higher education journey. If you need to get a job to help fund your journey, put a plan in place for finding work and make sure you can sustain this workload around your studies.
In short, the university offers the opportunity to gain friendships, experiences, and skills that will launch you on an amazing career path to future success. However, careful planning and thorough research are required to get the most out of this experience.