So, for those of you planning on going off to university in 2020 (or 2021 if you take a Gap Year), from now to September is when you choose….’Where am I going?’.
This is a really personal decision and it is one that should be taken as a family. The Sixth Form Team are specialists and are here to help, guide and support you. We cannot decide for you, nor will we ever ‘stop’ someone applying to a specific institution or course (although it may go against our professional judgment and advice). This is your application. Please don’t be swayed by your friends and their choices.
You need to think about: What matters to me? What do I want to get out of university? What do I want to invest £50k in?
This is an incredibly big decision and of course it is daunting, it is also an incredibly exciting time in your lives. Please ask for help when you need it.
- Every student can apply to up to 5 universities in one UCAS application; we suggest you create a short list over the summer of 7-8 to make a final choice from when you have your UCAS predictions.
- Most students will then pick 2-3 universities at the upper end of their predicted grades/points (aspirational) and 1-2 from the lower or middle range (realistic), this will depend on your confidence in your grades/points.
- The universities DO NOT know where else you have applied, your choices are not in order of preference.
- When creating a short list it is the course that matters, not whether the nightlife is good or whether the buildings are pretty! Once you have identified courses that are good for you…..THEN look at the wider facilities, city v campus, transport links, music, drama, sports and social activities.
- Ask….How many hours of actual teaching do I get? What sort of teaching is it (lecture, workshop, lab practical, tutorial? What are the facilities like? What is the graduate employment rate? What placement or internship opportunities are there? Will I enjoy it? Look out for the TEF Awards.
- Look at the Fees/Scholarships/ Bursaries – you are going to be paying for your course so you don’t want to miss out on ‘free’ financial support!
- Art and Design: You can apply for some courses directly from A Levels, some students will apply to college for ‘Foundation Diploma: Art and Design’ first and some will apply to both. Both of these options require a portfolio and/or sketch book.
- Medicine/Dentistry/Veterinary: EARLY DEADLINE. You have 4 choices for your main subject and your 5th choice must be for another subject, or nothing at all. You are likely to need to sit UCAT and/or BMAT.
- Music and Performing Arts: Some courses are through Universities, some are at Conservatoires (UCAS Conservatoires, previously CUKAS), and some may be at Drama schools that have a direct application. In theory you may apply through ALL these options at the same time. Speak to a member of staff though as you may end up missing lots of school for auditions and fees and travel costs can mount up.
- Law: Whilst you don’t have to submit for the Early Deadline we recommend that you do try and apply early, due to the competitiveness of the course. You may need to sit LNAT.
- Oxbridge: EARLY DEADLINE. You may only apply to Cambridge or Oxford NOT both. Please see staff about choosing Open applications or colleges. Cambridge will require a second application form known as SAQs, work may be requested and entrance exams may be required. Entrance exams are usually sat in November. https://www.admissionstesting.org/
- Primary Education: You can apply to up to 5 courses, but should have completed some work experience before your interview (institutions may have differing requirements). You will HAVE to sit the Professional Skills Tests http://sta.education.gov.uk/
NB: Many other courses have very specific requirements and many institutions and courses are competitive. Students are responsible for meeting deadlines and making themselves aware of requirements.