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Choosing a University It’s not as simple as you think…


n order to get the most out of your university experience, you need to make the right decision about which university is right for you. This sounds simple enough, but don’t forget it’s not just the course that matters. For the next three or four years, you could be living in a city far away from your friends and family. To help make that daunting decision, there are many things that you should consider first.

The course… There are three main things to consider when choosing your course. Firstly, will you enjoy the course that you plan to study? Secondly, does the university you want to go to offer that course? Thirdly, will the course allow you to break into the career that you’re interested in? If you are planning a career in a specific area, then do your research. Make sure that the relevant subject is taught by your first choice university. Furthermore, some universities allow their students more freedom than others when deciding which modules they want to take; so again, make sure you do your research.

The reputation… For many employers, the reputation and quality of the university that you choose to go to can influence their decision to offer you an interview or not; especially if you want to compete for the most

desirable graduate jobs in the most competitive industries, such as law, banking, accountancy, media and engineering. Consequently, it’s important to consider the various factors that can have an impact on an institution’s status.

A degree from one of these universities may put you in a more

advantageous position when it comes to applying for your dream job

University league tables can be a good start. These are released annually by publications such as The Times,Guardian and The Independent. They rank universities based on a range of criteria, including: teaching excellence, graduate employment rates and student satisfaction. However, the tradition and long-standing reputation of certain universities can often eclipse the impact of current university tables.

You may have heard of the ‘Russell Group’ universities. If you haven’t, they are “20 leading UK universities which are committed to maintaining the very best research, an outstanding teaching and learning experience and unrivalled links with business and the public sector.”* A degree from one of these universities may put you in a more advantageous position when it comes to applying for your dream job. We’re not saying that you have to go to one of these universities in order to get a top graduate job. Indeed, there are many exceptions to the rule. Indeed, people that choose not to go to one of these institutions can, and will, secure the best and most competitive jobs. However, a degree from a Russell Group university can certainly improve your chances of success. Another thing to consider is that general university league tables

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