Choosing the right university for you is extremely important. The university or college that you choose needs to cover all your individual needs. So, consider the following:
There is no point in going to a great university in a cool area and choosing a course that doesn’t really interest you. This may sound obvious but many students get seduced by the thought of going to university and the social aspects of the city. So, make sure you thoroughly research the programme on offer.
Firstly, find out if the course is accredited. This establishes the quality of the programme. You should also consider your strengths as a student – is the course more theoretical or practical for example? Finally, look out for added benefits such as work placement schemes and industry contacts that will develop your experience and skills and offer you a head start when you graduate.
There is no doubt that a good degree from a Russell Group UK university will be highly respected by employers. However, there are many great courses at good universities and colleges throughout the UK. League tables can also be considered a great way to gauge a university's reputation. However, it is important to note that they do not evaluate the individual departments so, it may be difficult to gather a specific perspective.
You are probably better considering your long-term goals and weighing up the balance between what the course offers and the reputation of your degree. Think long term about the industry you will be entering and make your decision from there.
What you study is very important but where you study will have a direct impact on your experience. Would you prefer to study in the city or the country? Also, consider the size of the university campus – would you prefer to be part of a large university campus or perhaps a smaller college? Consider your needs and what you really want out of the 'student experience'.
Finance plays a major part in choosing where to study. Firstly you need to consider if you can afford the course fees. You then need to consider the expense of where you will be studying. City students for example will expect to pay significantly more for their living costs. Do your research on not just how much it will cost to study but also how much it will cost you to live. This should give you your overall costs and allow you to make an informed decision. The NUS offer some great advice on living costs.