A Levels: The next steps to University

Before applying to University

Making the most out of your University Open Day


With a lot of universities to choose from, it’s very important that you really consider and research what University you want to attend.

Verity Law, our Senior Marketing Officer for UK recruitment at the University of Northampton said:

“It’s really important to make your university choice based on the big picture. The average undergraduate degree means you will spend three years studying and living in and around the university you choose.”


Preparation is key!

Make sure you are well prepared – take a note pad with you, and jot down the questions you and your family think are important. You can split this ‘tick list’ up between you all, so that way, you have plenty of time to get lots of information about everything you’re interested in finding out. It’s important to think about more than just the campus lifestyle; it’s unlikely that you’ll be living in halls in your second and third year, so find out whether there’s accommodation that’s close to campus, if it’s on a bus route, and how much it’ll cost. Think about which facilities you’re more likely to use during your time here and take a good look around – you can also take pictures if you’d like! It’s really important to look at buildings like the Library, as you’re likely to use them for long periods of time!

Your Course…

A university open day will primarily help you determine if your chosen course is right for you. Lecturers from the course will be on hand to talk you through the course, and you will be able to find out exactly what the course involves. Make sure you ask questions about each of the modules you will study, what the assignments will be like, and if there will be any exams.

It’s also worth finding out if your course has trips and placements you can take part in, and also, if there’s the opportunity to meet industry experts. Meeting experts will give you the chance to get your name out there, and you can get an idea of the kind of job you might want when you graduate.

Your new home?

If it’s your first time visiting the town you’re University is in, make sure you explore. It is really important to find out where the university is in relation to the rest of the town, and from there, work out where you will do your grocery shopping, and find out what the night life is like.

Try and find out as much as possible about the town as this will give you a realistic idea of what living there is like.

Ask us…

Ask lots of questions! No question asked is a silly one, and you can guarantee that someone else in the room will be glad to hear the answer! It’s true when people say – everyone is in the same boat, and you’ll be helping both yourself and others by asking first. At each Open Day, there will be staff on hand in the Student Centres where you can ask about things such as Finance, and additional support, but we also have a fantastic team of Student Ambassadors. These are current students, so can tell you what studying at the University is really like!


Don’t leave an open day straight away – grab a drink and chat over your experience before you head home. That way if you still have any questions, you can get an answer before you leave. Sitting and experiencing the vibe in the campus coffee shop will give you a taste of student life.

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