For those planing on applying to university, tuition fees means students are committing themselves to significant investment in their future, through university study. As such, careful consideration must be made regarding the course of study, to gain the best possible return on this investment, when it comes to employment and a career.
June sees many universities holding Open Days, an important opportunity for sixth form students to review course options before submitting their UCAS application in the Autumn.
A website is a good way to start research, but a visit enables you to take in the atmosphere and ask specific questions. Most universities allow you to to book to visit their Open Days online.
Prepare a check list of questions, so you leave the day feeling fully informed about both the course and what it would be like to study at the university itself.
Here are some suggested questions below:
- For your chosen course, what is the weekly contact teaching time and how does the system of tutorials work?
- How is the course assessed – how much is project work as opposed to exams?
- How many places are offered on your chosen course each year?
- How are applicants evaluated, e.g. are interviews part of this process?
- Does the course include time in industry, work experience or opportunities overseas?
- Do current students recommend the course?
- What careers advice is available?
- What percentage of last year’s graduates from this course gained employment and what types of jobs have they secured?
- What clubs and societies are offered and are the facilities for sport, the Arts etc. likely to match your interests?
- What is the policy for accommodation in the first year? If this is your first time away from home living in a hall of residence will make it easier to meet new friends.
- Do you like the atmosphere? You will be living there for at least 3 years so need to feel at home in the environment you choose. Campus style universities or those that are located around a town have a different feel.
- Are there good bus routes or secure areas for bicycles for travel to lectures? Think twice about taking a car. Parking can often be difficult and cars are very expensive to run.