5 top tips to help you choose your uni (and course)
Studying a degree is a significant commitment and it’s a big decision, make sure you get all of the information to help you make the right decision.
The UCAS search goes live this week with universities’ 2019 courses. Students hoping to go to university next year can start to look at exactly what’s on offer, what the entry criteria is and lots more beside.
It can be daunting, whether students are applying straight from school or college, or if they’ve have been in work for a while or even on a gap year, so we asked Dr Lisette Johnston , Head of School at ScreenSpace, part of the MetFilm school to give us some top tips…
1. Research your subject. Who provides the course that will best suit you? For example, there is a difference between Film Studies and a Film Production, so you need to do your homework. league tables give some idea, but also look at prospectuses. Most courses give a module overview to give a sense of what topics you’ll cover across the degree. Are there similarities or differences in the courses you like?
2. Research your university. Just because a university offers your degree subject and ranks well doesn’t mean it’s a ‘shoo in’. Go to university open days to gain a sense of the student experience. You will spend three or four years there, and may have to move from home, so you want to make sure you will be happy.
· Checkout what the student union is like.
· Do they have clubs and societies you are interested in?
· How easy is it to get to class?
· Are you on a campus or in a city?
Knowing these things will make it easier to make a decision when t the offers start coming in.
3. Think about your future self: The decisions you make about where and what to study are only part of the story. Find out:
· If you get to do work experience
· Are there sandwich course options with year in industry?
· If possible talk to former students, many of whom attend open days.
Also look at employability rates for the university as a whole and your field of study. At my institution, 87% of our students are working within the creative industries within six months of graduating. This is very different to saying a high percentage of graduates are working – get the facts!
4. Know the process: We know how scary the UCAS application process can be, so every candidate who applies for our courses is assigned a dedicated Admissions Manager (other unis offer this too) who will help talk you through the process, from researching a course, to personal statements and student finance.
5. Know the dates: UCAS goes live this week but there are other key dates to keep in mind. You can start actually applying for your course on May 22nd, all applications for autumn 2019 need to be received by January 2019 and that includes your personal statement.
Even if you aren’t currently studying a “relevant” subject, don’t discount applying to a course that really interests you. We, like other institutions consider all applications where students have demonstrated a passion for the industry/subject.
To help you learn more about the course that you’re interested in, make sure you attend any open days, workshops and / or school visits.