A Levels: The next steps to University

Before applying to University

Making the most out of a UCAS Fair

UCAS Fair

For many of you, attending a UCAS Fair may be the first time you are exposed to University and Higher Education information, so it can be a lot to take in all at once. Especially if you’re not prepared!

Knowing what to expect

UCAS Fairs are large events which often include over 100 exhibition stands from universities across the UK showcasing who they are and what they offer.  In addition to stall holders, UCAS Fairs also offer seminars and talks throughout the day, covering everything from student finance talks to subject specific sessions. Have a look at these before attending a fair so you know exactly what topics are being covered and can then attend ones of interest to you.

Throughout the day there will be many students from different schools attending, so there are always other students who are in the same position as you.

Making your way round

You may have an idea of which university stand you would like to visit. To help make sure you have time to visit everyone you would like to, have a look at the brochure given to you on the day or visit the UCAS website beforehand. This will detail which universities are attending as well as their stand number and a map of where each stand will be located – making it as easy as possible for you to find them.

If at any point you can’t find the university stand you are looking for, or can’t find your way back to your school or college meeting point, there will be student ambassadors around to help. Please feel free to stop them at any point, they will be able to give you advice or point you in the right direction to where you need to go.

Why should you go?

Going to university is a big decision and choosing the one which is right for you is even bigger. UCAS fairs provide you with all the universities in one place – the perfect opportunity to speak to universities which are of interest to you, or ones which you may not have heard of before. You can gather further information into interested courses, student life, university location and so much more – hopefully helping you to narrow down your choices, ready for you to complete your UCAS applications.

Ask questions – as many as you like!

The universities are there for you, so don’t be afraid to ask any questions you may have. It may be that you ask about the courses you are interested in – there may even be courses similar which you haven’t heard of before! Have a think about what it is important to you, i.e. work placements or assessment methods. Don’t forget entry requirements, cost of living and student accommodation as well as any other factors which will help you make the right choice. It may be worthwhile pulling together a list of questions before visiting the fair so you get the most out of attending.

After the event research

There’s always so much information to take in from a UCAS Fair, so make sure you continue your research after the event. Whether this be contacting the universities with further questions or researching into course modules, teaching modules or assessment methods for the courses you are interested in. Most universities will give you a prospectus to take away, this includes further information about the university – so you may find out something you didn’t know! As well as courses available, entry requirements and so much more.

We always recommend visiting the universities you are interested in, so have a look to see when their open days are. These normally run on a Saturday, and are a great opportunity to visit the university, meet the academics and go on a campus tour.  Learn more about open days here.

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