First and insurance choice. Which university goes where?
I look at the date and I remember that this time last year, I was finally breathing calmly knowing that I had successfully went through with my personal statement and my university choices. I know it wasn’t easy, nor relaxing to decide upon that scary thing that mature people call your future. But hey, be optimistic, the tough part has gone. Now that you’ve applied, and hopefully the responses are going to be the ones you’ve expected, all you need to do is….to decide between all your choices which two are the most likely to subsume all your university hopes and dreams, and then, hierarchically, select one as the first choice in terms of your preference, and one as your insurance. See, I’ve told you, the tough part has gone. However, because I know that one year ago this decision required a lot of time and thoughts, I will try to give you a hint of how I’ve made up my mind.
Make a list
This should look like a brain storming. Write down everything that comes to your mind and implies the university. Mine looked something like this: , and the list can go on. Now you have a rough idea about what you’d like to be comprised in your next 3, 4-year experience. However, even if every university wants for you to make the most out of your experience, there will always be strengths and weaknesses to every one of them. Therefore, the next step you need to take is order your points ascending according to your priorities.
Put your priorities in order
This can be quite tricky as you may say to yourself: “but I can’t choose.” However, when you had applied to each course, there was something in your head that clicked to that particular university. You hence need to put that ‘something’ on the top of your list. My main priority was my course so this was the decisive factor in establishing my first choice. I knew that I want to follow a degree in linguistics, but also to combine it with the understanding of the society and of the way individuals perform communication. Besides that, I loved how in Language, Culture and Communication, the understanding of the language also came through studying a language at your choice, beginner’s level or advanced level. Therefore, the course with its modules was what primarily driven me towards Warwick and convinced me to make it my first choice.
Do some research
Even though university experience is subjective, there will always be patterns emerging, so look at what former and actual students have to say about it. Take into consideration the services provided by the university for employment, both during your academic years and after. Of course, the opportunities you’ll have will very much depend on the effort you put in it, but it’s important to have that in mind. Open days are also your friend in this case as you can get an insight of the actual student life, so take advantage of it.
In the end, a little bit of instinct, a friend, a place, can always make some room into your final decision, but what matters the most is for you to make up your mind without later questioning: “Have I made the right decision?”.