Researching degree choices and universities can take time, and we encourage our students to start this process in the AS year. The Spring term is a good time for AS students to take a closer look at a small selection of the incredible 44,000 different degree courses available in the UK. It is wise to avoid making a rushed decision in the Autumn term of the A2 year when UCAS forms have to be completed, so we ask our students to take these suggestions on board.
Careers Appointments for AS students
There are many ways that students can find out about their options, and we strongly recommend that all AS students book an appointment with one of the Brampton College careers advisers who are experienced in guiding students through this sometimes difficult decision making process. We urge all students to research their degree choices carefully, and it is extremely important that they apply for degrees that they will both enjoy and excel at. There are certain crucial steps to take before arriving at the final decision.
University Websites – degree content and modules
Detailed information about degrees is available on all university websites. As well as looking at the overall content, it is important to inspect the modules on offer. Some courses at different universities have the same name, but may have a different content. For example ‘History’ could have modules on specific periods which may or may not be of interest to the student.
Students can make the most of any gaps in their schedules to attend taster days at The University of London. These are specifically organised for AS students, and there are at least 15 London institutions offering taster days: UCL, King’s, Queen Mary, SOAS, LSE and Royal Holloway are but a few of the universities opening their doors to prospective undergraduates. Many take place at half term and the Easter & Summer holidays.
A taster day usually takes place from 10am-3pm and students can attend subject-specific talks given by university lecturers, as well as going on a campus tour. These are often good decision makers or breakers for degree choices at university. Students need to apply for these via the website: www.tasters.gradsintocareers.co.uk These taster days have fairly limited places and get booked up
During the academic year, universities across the UK also hold open days. These are also for year 12 students who want to take a closer look at university departments and facilities. There will be undergraduates to talk to who can give the inside story on what to expect from a particular degree course. Crucially, heads of departments are available to talk to about the details of a particular degree course and the modules. Students need to register for these on www.opendays.com. Many are organised at weekends, during the Easter and Summer holidays, right through to and during the Autumn term.
Finding work experience of any kind can improve transferable skills, which are highly desirable for employers. If students can find work experience that is relevant to the degree they wish to study, then of course this is a good opportunity. However, if this is not possible then students can draw upon the skills that they are able to acquire. Two weeks in the summer may not seem like much, however when students finally make it to university, any previous experience can go a long way towards applying for the highly competitive undergraduate internships, often the recruiting ground for graduate employers.
Extra Curricular Reading
Reading around a subject is always a good indicator to any university admissions tutor that a student is motivated to study a particular degree. It shows enthusiasm and depth of knowledge, as well as a broadened understanding of the subject. It will also impress at interview, and is useful to write about in the UCAS personal statement.
Careers appointments can be booked at reception with Sarah Galea and Bina Mervana: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday