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Which Uni? Your UCAS Application

Steph Williams Study

When it comes to making your decision about which universities to choose from, make sure you take everything into consideration. I have compiled a list with some of the main points you should consider.


Do your homework. Look at your top universities in detail, find which has the course(s) you want to apply for by looking at what modules each university course offers. You should be able to see what modules you’ll be studying and what modules are optional for your entire 3 (or 4 for sandwich courses) years at university. Find your perfect course, it could be quite expensive to move if you change your mind.


When you go to uni, will you prefer to live close to home or would you like to move away? Maybe you want to be close enough that you can go back home to visit every so often, but have enough distance between you that you can live independently. This is entirely up to you. If you want to visit home every few weeks, take a look at travel costs from the area to your hometown, this will give you an idea of how much you’re going to spend.

Another thing to consider is commuting. If you’re thinking about choosing a university close to home, would you prefer to live at home and commute? Would that be a lot cheaper? Or would you still like to be living in halls for your first year?

Size of University

Universities are so different in size, are you someone who would prefer to go to a small uni which might have a more personal feel to it (but due to its size it could lack the facilities larger universities offer), or would you prefer the hustle and bustle of a larger university where lectures are given to hundreds of students at a time? Larger universities tend to have more facilities available such as sports and student’s union etc. Have a good look into what’s available at your top universities.

League Tables

Maybe you’re interested in going to the best university for your chosen course. In which case, you can look at the university league tables. To get a sense of where would be best to apply, bare in mind that the better the university sometimes means the higher the entry requirements in terms of UCAS points. You need to judge which university is best for you depending on what grades you are likely to receive from the exams you are doing at school or college.

What the University Has to Offer

Accommodation that’s close to campus with the necessary facilities (washing machine, dishwasher etc) and top notch wifi might be something you’re looking for, or a great students union with societies you’re interested in joining might be more important. You should research what the university offers outside of lecture time, is there some great activities you could get involved in?

Additional Needs

Those individuals who require additional needs such as ramps for wheelchairs or audio induction facilities for those with reduced ranges of hearing should contact the universities they are thinking about studying at and ask all the relevant questions. Make sure the university you choose is best suited to your needs. This goes for accommodation too. Where possible, visit your chosen universities and get a feel of the different accommodation facilities. Newer universities might be better suited to those in a wheelchair for example, due to the modern accessible buildings.

You may be entitled to additional funding and extra time for exams and coursework where required. If possible, visit open days and ask lots of questions, you’ll get a better idea of the facilities available to you.

Cost and Funding

If you’re eligible for free university tuition (primarily those in Scotland) chances are you’re going to take that route. But if you’re looking at universities where you’ll (or rather, student finance will) be paying £9000 per year for tuition, it’s a good idea to see which universities offer scholarships and/or bursaries. This could entitle you to a considerable amount of money which could make it easier when buying materials or books needed for your chosen course. This could also come in handy in terms of a deposit when it comes to finding somewhere to live in second year.

Descision Time

For each university write a pros and cons list. Go through each of them in detail and think them through with your parents or friends, they might have thought of something you didn’t.

Remember, this is somewhere you’ll be studying for 3 or 4 years, so make sure you go to open days, ask questions and find the course and university that best suits you. Don’t choose to go to a specific university just because your friends are. This could be a consideration but don’t allow this to be a deciding factor. You’ll be surprised how quickly you make friends at uni, especially when you’re in halls.

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