Exams – Check!
End of term – Check!
Summer plans – Check!
University research – Pending…?!
If University is on the horizon, you may already know which subject (or subjects!) you’d like to study, and hopefully, you’ve started to think about how to use this summer to make your application stand out. The next big question is where do you want to study? Perhaps you’ve narrowed it down by country, or maybe even region, but how can you be sure about choosing the right institution for you? This is where University Open Days come in very handy!
What is an Open Day?
Quite simply, it is a day when Universities open their doors to prospective students. It is the best opportunity you’ll get to peek inside what your future may hold. You can visit the University first hand, speak to real students and real professors, and gain valuable insight into not only student life at that institution, but also advice on the application process and the course you want to study. An Open Day also gives you the opportunity to discover the campus and the local area. Open Days offer you and your parents or guardians the chance to get a feel for an institution and, therefore, make a more informed decision when applying to Universities.
Visiting a University can be quite a daunting experience. There is so much to see and do, how can you be sure to make the most out of one day? We’ve compiled our Top 5 Tips from our University Experts to help you make the most of your Open Day!
1. Speak to a Current Student
Open Days will be led, mainly, by Student Ambassadors. These are students employed for the day to make your experience is as informative and enjoyable as possible. Use these Student Ambassadors to learn what student life is really like. Make a list of questions you want to know about the University before you attend, and be sure to grab (not literally) a Student Ambassador on the day to get your answers. Even better, find a Student from the department you’re interested in!
2. Take a Campus Tour
Campus Tours will run pretty frequently over the course of the Open Day, and it’s definitely a good idea to take one. This is the perfect opportunity to see the campus in all its glory. Most likely you will see the libraries, a sample of the halls of residence, the Students’ Union, sports facilities and more. You may even learn some of the history or myths of the college. Don’t forget to take photos!
3. Attend an Information Session
This one is a must. This will cover the fundamentals of the college and key information on application deadlines, financial aid, student life, halls of residence and more. Be sure to attend one of these and write down any questions that come to mind during the session. After the session, the present will most likely invite anyone with questions to find them at the end.
4. Speak to a Professor
Another must! Speaking to a Professor is a fantastic opportunity to show you are interested in your subject field. It’s also the perfect chance to ask about the details of the course, or specific modules, or what graduates of the course go on to do. Again, have a listen of questions to ask beforehand and make a note of their answers. You could even be really smart and ask what materials you could read over summer to get ahead.
5. Eat the Food & Live the Life
Open Days are your opportunity to fully experience the area you’re visiting. Why not live a little? Have fun! You’re going to spend the next several years of your life out and about as a student. Enjoy a bite at some of the local spots every student knows and loves. After all, it’s summer, and University is all about learning how to balance the academic and social.