Ok so there comes time where certain students *cough,cough* end up changing their minds about what course they want to do. Now when I was at college I thought this was crazy, how hard is it to choose a course? Here’s the answer, very and a lot of people change their minds along the way. As we all know you don’t get that much time between finishing your first year at college and having to know what you want to study. Here are a few tips for you, yes you sitting there thinking you have all the time in the world. You don’t.
1. Do you have any idea what you want to do?
If you do that’s fantastic and you are one of the very few lucky ones who has a clear goal in mind, skip ahead. For those of you who are like me and have no idea what you want to be when you grow up here’s the plan. Ask yourself 3 questions..
– What do I like to do?
– Is there anything I’m interested in that I could study?
– Is Uni the only option for this? (I added this one as uni doesn’t suit everyone and for over £8000 you don’t want to be forced into going)
2. Why do I want to go to Uni?
There are so many reasons people go to Uni but let me put this simply it’s not all parties. We all hear tales of the freshers that come back in the summer months claiming to be drunk every night and asleep all day, I’ll tell you now that rarely happens. I’m sorry to burst your bubble but if that is why you’re coming to uni then you will have a rude awakening. You are encouraged to meet friends and have fun but at the end of the day you are at uni to work, that’s what you’re PAYING for! Make sure you’re applying with some motivation to actually do the work when you get there because no one wants to repeat first year.
3. Where do I want to be?
Location,location, location. When I started looking at Uni’s the most important thing was where I felt at home at my first open day at Kingston I didn’t think it would win at all. It felt busy and crowded and ugly, something I really didn’t want. My heart was set on the beach and I actually told someone at Kingston this on my first visit then I visited again…and again. I fell in love with it and now I’m here Kingston Hill is one of my favourite places (and I don’t even study there). My main advice for this is don’t just look at the Uni itself go and look at the surrounding areas, I’m sure I would have fallen in love with Kingston the first time had I done that.
4. Visit as many Open Days as possible…and try and see through the free sweets
Every University you visit are trying to pull you in, remember that. Some give away prizes, sweets,chocolate,pen etc. in order to try and persuade you but really think about what you want to know (plus you get all this in freshers week anyway). You’ll be paying off the debt for a very long time so you need to be sure of the University and what it stands for. One of the reasons I liked Kingston and decided to apply was because I really felt like there were no stupid questions ( I still feel like that now actually) and that I would be taken on as a person, not a statistic. Don’t be scared to talk about yourself and what you need either, if you have a worry or an issue be open with them, see what they say.
5. Talk to people who have studied your subject
My boyfriends cousin was so helpful with this. She was finishing her final year at Uni when I was applying so any questions I had she could tell me the truth. Don’t always trust forums though because some people will try to scare you, especially if you’re moving to London. Not everyone has a helpful family member so try talking to your subject teachers, ask your uni if they have any way you can talk to students (Kingston have a whole blog set up where current students can answer any questions you have).
6. If you make the wrong decision don’t panic!
So I’ve done the UCAS, the exams, freshers week, THE LOT. Guess what? I chose the wrong damn course. Although these are tips people get to uni and realise that they were wrong and that’s ok. It took me a while to admit that I didn’t like my Creative Writing course but now I have things are being sorted out. I can sleep knowing that next year I’ll be full field Literature and it wont make a difference to my overall degree. So if you get a bit stuck go and talk to someone, everyone can make a mistake the important part is to fix it.