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University plans – where should I begin?
Current year 12’s may be at that stage where you are now thinking about beginning your research for university (if not already, and of course – if you intend on going to university – there are so many options available!)
Some things to bear in mind:
– What should I study?
Is there a particular subject that you have enjoyed studying during your year 12/13 studies?
Is there something that you have found yourself to be really keen on studying, even if you haven’t already? Many subjects not offered at A levels are great options for university!
For me, I sort off always knew that I wanted to study Politics – it is something that I was interested in from a young age, but it is important to remember that you may only have found out about your degree choice recently – and as long as you are interested, that is okay!
If you still have no idea about what you want to study but know that you want to go there are three options:
1) Consider a gap year – this is a great way to get lots of experience, whilst giving you time to think about what your options are (and don’t think that taking a gap year is looked negatively – as long as you use it wisely, employers will be impressed!)
2) Use the resources available to help you! Have a look at university prospectuses which list every course that is offered, even if you do not intend on applying to it. You can usually ask for a prospectus to be mailed to you for free! Having a skim read of these will be useful in seeing whether you like a particular field. Speak to your school advisors, look through the UCAS website and do some research of your own – watching a documentary may be the start of you finding a new passion!
3) Look at the next point: career options.
Politics is a broad degree and will put you in a strong position to apply for most jobs. However, for those of you who do not want to study politics (you should), there may be certain degrees which you either need to study, or are highly recommended for certain careers.
Don’t forget that conversion courses exist too if this is something that you are interested in, such as with Law.
When thinking about this, you will find yourself focusing on looking at specific universities.
Whilst Politics overall tends to have relatively similar content across all universities, there are some institutions which may just not be for you. There was one university where this was the case for me: I just couldn’t see myself dedicating three years to its course!
Along with bearing in mind what you may not like, it is important to consider what you do like: Warwick’s focus on International Political Economy really stood out for me.
And remember – interests do change!
Campus? Non-campus? Close to home? Far away? Sporty? Musical? Society opportunities? Academic opportunities? Options to study abroad? Options to work for a year?
Just like with course content, some universities may just not be for you, and that is okay. You may find this when researching, or when you visit during an open day. It is better to know sooner than later!
Similarly, you may feel completely at home at a particular university *Shout out to Warwick* in which case you should definitely consider firming!
WRITING THE DREADED PERSONAL STATEMENT
I have previously written about this and my advice doesn’t change so I suggest having a read through that!
Remember: it is a PERSONAL statement, make it personal!
Shanita 🙂 xo