Step 1. At least one year before: start planning and choose a course
Discuss your aspiration to go to university with family, friends, and teachers at least a year before making that decision. Family will play a big role in helping you with your application. A parent will now start to question you about what you want to do at university, after all they will be helping with this adventure (and maybe contributing some funding). Is it to study and get a degree or is to party and socialise, your answer will probably be a bit of both – work hard and play hard! Consider what support you will need and whether you would prefer to study at home, or move away and live independently.
You should also get advice from your school or college. Deciding what course to take can be a dilemma, for example you may have your heart set on doing accountancy, but even this subject alone has many variations. Its best to keep you options open, look at all the courses and establish those that may be suitable. Go online and look at all the courses, do not be afraid to change courses and remember this is your life, your choice. Subject teachers can help you choose between different courses and discuss your predicted grades. Some courses, and unis including Oxbridge have more requirements for applications, like specialist exams and earlier UCAS deadlines, so take this into account.
Your school or college careers advisor can help with the application process, writing a personal statement, and discuss which careers your chosen course can lead to.
- Research into courses and careers that interest you
- Take note of entry requirements and early deadlines
- Discuss your aspirations with family, friends, and teachers