Once you’ve decided which course you want to study, you can start digging into the details of the course content.
Look at the various modules, both core and optional, that you will be studying throughout your degree. Even though courses have the same or similar names they can be very different depending on the university you choose.
You should also check to see what courses have industry accreditation, this gives the degree you’re studying a mark of quality that employers understand and value.
Course entry requirements are an important factor when making your UCAS choices. You should consider choosing a university that offers your course with entry requirements you are likely to meet. However, don’t worry if your results are different than what you expected, there could be Clearing and Adjustment opportunities for you.
The wider opportunities on offer
Consider what extra opportunities are available to you at different universities. Do they offer a sandwich year with your course, so you can gain a year of industry experience before you graduate?
Is there the chance to study abroad? Having the opportunity to study outside of the UK can be an insightful experience, which may also help you improve your confidence and language skills.
What are the graduate prospects? Looking at the recent employment figures for a university is a good indication of the career support and industry links the institution has. For example, 93% of 2016 Bradford graduates went onto employment or further study within six months (HESA).
The campus community
The university’s community is an important factor to consider when you are narrowing down your options, after all this is somewhere you’ll be spending the next few years of your life.
You should feel confident that you will settle in easily and make new friends. Look at what the Students’ Union has to offer for extracurricular activities, are there any clubs or societies you are interested in joining?
What is the campus like? Are there lots of social spaces to hang out? Are there services and facilities to support you with your studies, such as a 24-hour library?
You can also narrow down your choices for university by geographical location. If you are going to do this, you should ask yourself:
- Do I want to live local to home to save on living costs?
- Do I want to move further away to experience independent living?
- Do I want to be in a big metropolitan city or a smaller university town?
- Do I want the university to be in a city centre or a secluded campus?
Another factor you may want to consider when narrowing down your locations is the cost of living. Universities located in the north of the UK often cheaper, Bradford, for example, is one of the least expensive cities for students to live in.
Take a look around
A great way to see a university in real life is to visit on an Open Day. You’ll have the opportunity to speak to course tutors and current students and ask them any questions you might have.
It’s also a chance for you see where you could be living and studying for the next few years and decide if its the right place for you.