If you’re leaving college this year and plan to study for a degree at university, the hard part is choosing which university to attend.
There are hundreds of different universities around the country to choose from, all of which have their own strengths and weaknesses.
Choosing the right university for you depends on a number of factors. Firstly, you’ve got to think about the entry requirements for the programme that you wish to study and determine your likelihood of getting accepted. And of course, it’s worth considering the university itself, the campus culture, location, and the extracurricular activities on offer, since you’ll be spending the next 3-4 years of your life here and even longer if you decide to stay on and study for a master’s degree.
The first thing you should think about when applying to university is whether the course that you want is available. And if it is, how reputable is the university in question for teaching it? Most universities will specialise more heavily in certain subjects, so it’s worth taking this into consideration. Going to a university where the arts or humanities subjects are heavily invested in, to study science, might not be ideal, for example.
Once you’ve chosen your degree subject and selected some universities that look like they might be a good option for you, it’s worth checking out the entry requirements. If you don’t yet have your grades, it’s worth speaking to your current tutors to see where they would put you in terms of grades and what they predict you are likely to achieve in terms of your past performance and ongoing work. This will help you make an informed decision as to the best course and university for you and improve your chances of being accepted into your first choice.
Another factor definitely worth considering when going to university is your living arrangements. You will need to decide whether you want to continue living at home with your parents or family, or whether you’ll move into student halls for your first year. Many students find that moving away to university and living in halls is the best choice because it means that they get to have the full experience of university, and it’s great for learning new skills, living independently and preparing for adult life.
If you want to know what to expect from living in student halls, consider visiting on open days. For example, the University of Winchester open days allow you to meet and talk with staff and students and tour the campus. You can find out more at University Compare this open day and others. It is a university comparison site where you can get more information on all the universities you are considering attending.
Cost of Living
While there are loans and grants that you can get to help you out financially while studying, do some calculations before you apply to make sure that you can afford the cost of living in your chosen university town or city. You may need to consider the possibility of getting a part-time job or asking your parents to support you if the cost of living is likely to be higher than the loans and grants you are eligible for.
Choosing the right university is a big responsibility, so take your time to find the best fit for you.