Choosing the right university is a tough decision and it took me so long. Pages and spreadsheets of notes and comparisons. Hundreds of brochures from EVERY SINGLE university. It’s so overwhelming and finding where to start feels impossible so here is some advice on how I managed to organise myself and choose the right university. (These tips aren’t really in any specific order but are just the things I found vital to help me narrow down my choices).
– Make sure you know what course you want to do (or at least in general, for example- I knew I wanted to do business but wasn’t sure which area of business).
– Decide how far or close you want to be to home– This will help you to at least narrow it down a little. (I decided I wanted to be far from home but still within England, this meant I could get rid of all the prospectuses from uni’s in Kent, Sussex and Surrey).
– Have a look around the local town– is there lots to do? Can you see yourself living here? Would you feel safe here? Is the accommodation good for you?
– Don’t just apply for the same uni’s as your friends– This is my biggest piece of advice! Uni is a fresh start- of course you’ll still have your friends from home so try to go somewhere different where you can make new friends. I know the thought of moving away on your own is scary and a familiar face would be nice but being on your own will really help you grow as a person. You’re likely to grow apart if you spend every day at uni with them when you’ve already spent your school time with them so spread your wings and move away from them.It’s not like you’ll never see them again haha!!
– Don’t just pick up every uni prospectus at the UCAS fair– ask about the subject you’re interested in and if they appeal to you then grab one. Then you can narrow it down easier.
– Read up on the courses– see if they offer anything extra like a placement year or any extra opportunities. You’ll be paying a lot of money for uni so make sure you’re getting more out of it than just the basic course.
– Be ruthless– when you’re going through the prospectuses, throw away the ones that don’t draw you in completely. There’s so many to go through the you need to know how to get rid of lots of them. It sounds silly but personally for me- I would throw out any prospectuses that are small with little detail (more leaflet-like ones). For me personally- I found that if a uni didn’t make the effort to wow me with their prospectus then I had no interest going there- but that was just me!
– Keep notes– I made a spreadsheet to keep track of the ones I was visiting. I would list the course(s) I was interested in at that specific uni, the date of the open day(s), the grades I required to get in etc.
– Research– once I found the uni’s I was interested in, I would find the course online and read up on them, make notes and even print off pages
– Ask people you know– I’m sure you’ll know at least one person who’s gone to uni (if you don’t then get in contact with your sixth-form/college and ask if you can chat with someone who went off to uni from the year above). Ask their advice, how they chose their uni, specific things they looked out for when choosing. Getting advice from them can be really useful and they can help to point you in the right direction.
– Be organised– I kept lots of information for each uni in a big folder so I could always refer back to things. It helps so much especially as you’ll have exams piling up too! There’s lots to do!!
So here’s just some of my advice for choosing the right uni! If you want some more tips then be sure to ask me over on my instagram, twitter or facebook!!
Featured image taken from UCAS website