Preparing for university
Getting ready for University – time to prepare
While waiting for clarity over A level grades 2020, you can stay proactive. There are top qualities and attitudes that will make your next step to University a really positive one. How can you prepare?
1. Maintain a passion and interest in your chosen degree subject
Keep up your motivation and your study skills
You’ve made the choices and accepted the offers, now…
- Read around your degree subject – check if your chosen Uni has a suggested reading list online or simply read and research stuff around your subject that interests you.
- Try a free online course related to your degree subject (or simply of interest!). Take a look here: https://www.futurelearn.com/courses
- Sign up as a student to specialist and professional bodies and institutes linked to your subject for news, opportunities and advice eg: Royal Geographic Society, British Psychology Society, Institute of Physics, Royal Society of Chemistry.
Use a search engine to find plenty more…
2. Do your Student Budget Planning – how much money will you actually need for living costs?
Be organised and plan ahead
Depending on where you plan to study and what you like to spend your money on, the cost of living will have a big influence on how you actually live and the choices that you have.
- Great tools on Money Saving Expert: https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/students/
- Check Uni websites for their own budget and finance advice
3. How are you going to develop yourself and your skills as an Undergraduate?
Identify and build on your skills and experience now
This will help with study, settling in, deciding which clubs and societies to join, managing your workload and your social life, and getting part time work. It all adds to your CV for that graduate job and will give a boost to your self-confidence – you’ll be surprised at what you’ve already achieved!
- Plot your skills and identify gaps using the HE skills map
- Get some experience in your chosen field (if possible)
- Volunteer and help in your local community (really needed at the moment).
- Volunteer for the NHS. You could also try https://vinspired.com and www.do-it.org.uk
- Develop a professional profile on LinkedIn and other social media platforms
4. What do you need to know about your chosen University and the town or city you’ll be living in?
Do your research and build knowledge
Find out about…
- Support services at University including housing and student welfare.
- Student safety on campus and in the local area – check out travel and public transport
- Local employers for part time work and also access to larger employers if you want professional placements and internships
- The local cultural and social opportunities – it’s a time to have fun, too!
5. Remain positive and make the most of your extra time between now and University
Use your communication skills and build your network
- Stay in touch with developments regarding Uni offers through Sexey’s’ bulletins,
- Subscribe to live updates on BBC education news and UCAS
- Keep healthy and exercise
- Keep in touch with friends, family and school community
Good luck! Stay in touch.
By Wendy Watson, Independent Careers Advisor