Choosing the right university for you might seem an impossible task. With so many options out there you might be wondering where to start! Hopefully by this point, you’ve been to a UCAS fair and picked up a whole library of prospectuses to start your research, but if not, don’t worry! Most Universities will let you order one online.
The prospectus is full of useful information relating to the University; its campuses, the city they are based in, the Students Union’ and obviously the courses.
On the Subject of Courses…
Even though two or more universities might offer the same course, they may well be taught in a different style. Some institutions will follow a traditional theory-based teaching style while others might encourage a more hands-on, practical approach. The chances of finding the perfect match can be quite challenging. You’ll need to decide what is most important to you, it’s all a matter of priorities that you feel are important. Ask yourself some questions like: how many exams are on the course? What work placements are offered? How many contact hours are there in a week?
Once you have a good idea of the sort of course you want to study, you’ll need to research what Universities offer it, use a reliable website such as the UCAS ‘search’ page.
This stage of your research should really start to narrow down your number of possibilities. Course choice is one of the top reasons why students drop out of University in their first year, so it’s important to get it right.
If you’re still struggling to decide on a course, working backwards can also be very effective. Research your ideal career, and find out what qualifications and experience is necessary. This will not only give you more information about your future, but might make you aware of a wider range of degree options.
Whereabouts do you want to study?
Now you’ve managed to whittle down your options based on the course, it’s time to start thinking about location. Universities are scattered all over the UK. From quaint towns to lively cities, each one offers their own unique experience, so it’s important you find the right one for you.
Not only will you want to consider distance from home, but also what the location has to offer to keep you entertained outside of lectures. Because what you do outside of lectures can be just as important as what you do in them when it comes to your overall university experience.
Having a good Students’ Union is essential. Not only will it support you throughout your university journey, but it’ll also provide you with lots of fun social activities where you can meet new people, discover new interests, and make life long memories. Make sure to research all the different sports clubs and societies on offer for you to get involved in; at the University of Chester we have over 100, so you’re bound to find something that interests you.
Once you have a short list, how do you apply?
If you are applying for an undergraduate degree, it will be processed by UCAS. It’s worthwhile registering with UCAS as soon as you start thinking about university, even before you have made a decision about where to go. Once registered, save your ID number and Password in a safe place!
Whilst your school, college or employer will support you in making your UCAS application, it’s essential that you familiarise yourself with the key dates, deadlines and structure of the UCAS process. UCAS provide a range of step-by-step guides and videos for each stage of the process which can be accessed on their website.
Finally, during the decision-making process, it’s easy to feel like you’re being bombarded with information. The most effective way to take control of the situation is to work out what you want, which universities can offer it to you, and most importantly of all: get out there and visit as many of the universities as you can.
All universities offer Open Days, designed specifically to give you a taste of what life is like at that university, and to make sure you have all the information you need to make the right decision.
If you want to find out more about studying and living at the University of Chester, why not book on to one of our Open Days. You can book your place now!
Want to know more?
In the meantime, if you have any questions regarding the application process, feel free to contact our Undergraduate Admissions Team.
T: 01244 511000
Or, for more general enquiries contact us, we’d be more than happy to help.
T: 01244 511000