Which University Is The Right Fit For You?

Once you’ve decided that university is right for you, the next step is to determine where you are going to spend the next three or four years of your life.

For most of you, choosing a university isn’t going to be a quick process as there are lots of factors to consider. When starting to look at the different options, it’s better to consider the course you want to study first before looking at where it’s offered.

There is one thing that you should try to remember when choosing a subject – it should be something you enjoy and that you would be happy to study in-depth for the next few years.

Consider the subjects you enjoy the most at school and then research similar courses that you can study at university. If you really don’t have a clue, then start by discounting the subjects you have absolutely no interest in to narrow down the search field.

You also need to think about whether you want a course offering a clear career path or does your interest lie in one of the more traditional academic subjects? It may be that you have a dream job in mind, making your choice obvious. For example, if you want to be a vet, then a veterinary medicine/science degree course is a must.

Be aware that the same title of course will not be taught in the same way or cover the same material at every university offering it. Make sure you pay attention to the detail because even the way in which courses are assessed can differ.

Another consideration, if you go for a more vocational course, is whether it is approved by a professional body, because this can give you a head start when you apply for a job in your chosen industry.

The next step is to think about the location – there are more than 395 providers of undergraduate courses in the UK. Take time to consider carefully whether you want to move away from home or study nearby. Do you want a university in the middle of a city or town or a single-site campus? Look at the facilities provided by the university and what will be on the doorstep for leisure and nightlife activities.

Once you have narrowed your options down, then attend an open day as this is one of the best ways to find out if it’s the right fit for you. A glossy prospectus can sometimes be deceiving, showing only the best bits, and when you get there you could find the reality is rather different.

But remember that it’s not the end of the world if, after all your careful research, you end up beginning your studies and realising you’ve made a mistake. Universities have guidance staff on hand to help first year students who discover their course wasn’t what they were expecting and there will still be plenty of options available to you.


There are a wide range of subjects to choose from. If you think you want to study certain subjects at university, or if you have a career area in mind, it’s important to check if they have any particular A-level entry requirements. You may not yet know what you want to do after A-levels, so here’s a quick guide to making choices.

The most important criteria for choosing A-levels subjects are:

  • What you are likely to enjoy and be good at?
  • Are there any particular subjects and grades you may need? If you have a particular career, job or further study in mind you may need to choose certain A-levels in order to meet entry requirements.
  • How open you want to keep your future study and career choices?
  • Ability and enjoyment–Think about the subjects you are good at and like. If you enjoy what you’re studying you are likely to be more motivated. If you have ability in your chosen subjects you can increase your chances of success.
  • New subjects–Schools and colleges may offer A-levels in subjects that you have not studied before – it’s really worth taking some time to find out what’s
    involved in new subjects.
  • Subject combinations –

  • Some subjects cover common
    ground – such as geography and
    environmental studies. You need
    to check they’re not too similar as
    some colleges and universities
    may not accept the combination for
    entry to higher level courses.
    Some subject combinations
    are complimentary and fit well
    together. This can help you meet
    entry requirements for higher level
    Some schools and colleges may
    have restrictions on subject
    combinations, so check your

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