University is the most enjoyable period of your life.
This is the phrase is often heard from our parents, teachers, and siblings when we are on the edge of finishing your A levels. Obviously, they are not at all lying when they say this as they also have experienced this phase in their lives.
For most of the students, the university is the place where they finally get the independence they have been craving for. They can go out anywhere, anytime, eat what they want, and make lots of new friends. They tend to have the amazing time in these years.
However, the triggering point comes when the pressure of how to choose a perfect university dominates you. Choosing a university is not an easy task, especially when you are too focused and concerned. You need to be a bit more strategic to narrow down your search and decide on a second and first choice. There are many elements on which your choice depends on – tuition fees, infrastructure, library, faculty, culture of the university, distance to the university from your home, ranking and etc.
Thus, it’s essential you make the right decision at the first time before you spend your money. But if that’s got you concerned and anxious, don’t be! Read on to find out how to intelligently choose your university where it’s worth studying.
First Get to Know Yourself
Even before searching for a university, get to know yourself. Think about what you want from the university and what you can give to the university. It is really essential to have a genuine view of yourself, your motivations and what actually you want to achieve as these are the things you will need to express and explain to the university admission department in your missions’ statements and even in the interviews. Consider the following when analyzing yourself:
What do you expect from your A level results? When choosing a University, keep this in mind as this will give you a realistic view of which university you can apply to. Thus, this will be a good starting point to narrow down your search options.
- What do you expect from the University?
There are ample of reasons and motivational factors on which your decision depends on, so question yourself to analyze what you expect from your potential university. For instance, you may prefer a high ranking university for prestige or you may have some other options to prioritize your choice.
- What do you aim for your future career?
You are the only one who knows about your career aims and not anyone else can decide about it. There are some people too who have no idea what do they want from their career even after graduating from the university. But if you prioritize your choices towards your particular aims and objectives, there are likely to be few universities with the better reputation of your chosen field than others. Make sure you do a preliminary research to find out what type of degrees are more respected in the profession you desire to enter.
- What’s your personality?
Contemplate about your personality characters and how they sparkle in your approach to your present school or college training. Are you that kind of student who is self-motivated enough to put in a huge volume of work in order to accomplish top grades? If so, you might prosper in an extremely hypothetical environment such as Oxford or Cambridge. If you realize that you are not so academic, but a more laid-back person then chooses accordingly.
Narrowing Down your Choice of Universities
Now that you have puzzle-out your picture and drafted your aims and motivations, it’s a high time to start narrowing down the lengthy list of universities. If you are aiming a sky, be ready for high fees and other expenses as well. If you desire to be super organized about the selection process, create a list of potential universities and give points to each of the criteria according to your priority.
Choose the Right Course
It might be the situation that for years you’ve been set on becoming a doctor, lawyer or may be an architect, etc. and you can identify exactly how you’re going to get there. However, for most of us, it’s slightly trickier than that. Determining what you desire to do for the rest of your life can be very frightening, even if you try your hardest to choose, it’s not usually something that you can decide overnight. If you are really focused towards your future goal then it will be very easy for you to choose a course among the others. Thus, choose your course accordingly.
When searching for a university, think carefully about how far you want to live from home and your family. If you are a sensitive kind of person who is prone to home sickness, you might be better off selecting a university that’s within the reach of your parents. But if you are adventurous and want to live independently then you have more options because you are not bound to choose a university near your home. Though you still need to do some investigations, such as transport links, nearby places and may be some convenience stores.
Cost of Living
If you are planning to live away from your home in a dorm, then the most important element you should consider is the cost of living. If you are planning to go abroad to study then this is the most important element you need to think about. Cost of living varies from country to country and even area to area, with the most expensive areas being London and Oxford in the United Kingdom.
Tuition fees vary from university to university and even from course to course within the same university, depending on the availability and nature of the course. In some universities, you are offered student loans, grants and student finance to cover your tuition fees. But if you are worried about the debt you’ll have to bear, it’s worth comparing tuition fees as a part of your university selection process.
The Final Shortlist
When you reach the final shortlist considering all the elements mentioned above, it’s time to shape those down still further by attending open days and some other visits to the universities. Try to connect to former and current students of that particular university to get to know more about it from their perspective. Once you are done with these elements and visits, you will reach one final university according to your mind set.