1. What course is right for me
The first thing you should consider is what you actually want to study. What do you enjoy? Which industry do you see yourself in? What are you passionate about? If you’re considering a few different courses or are interested in something you may not have studied previously, then it’s a good idea to attend a taster day. You can find out more about our Business School Taster Days here and our Escape Studios Taster Days here.
2. Is this the right Uni for me (will I fit in?)
Moving away from home and living with a whole new group of people can be daunting, and you’re obviously going to want to find out about the University / College’s social aspects before making your application. To find out if you think your chosen institution will suit you, go and visit them at an Open Day! You can also use this opportunity to speak with current students and student ambassadors to find out more about the social aspects, clubs and societies, and the general culture of that University / College. You can chat to Pearson College London students on The Access Platform.
3. Distance from home
Although some students are happy to live far away from home to study a subject they’re passionate about, many people would rather study closer to home. At Pearson College London, around 50% of our students commute to London, meaning they can stay at home with their families while still enjoying London life at uni. If you’re thinking of commuting, it may be wise to invest in travel saving schemes such as a 16-25 Railcard. All full-time students can also get a TFL Student Oyster which allows you to save a third on off-peak travel within the Tube / Overground / DLR zones.
So you’ve found a course that suits you, at an ideal distance away from home, but what about the location of the University / College itself? What opportunities does that city have to offer? Depending on what you want to gain from your University experience, key factors you may look for could be a city with plentiful job opportunities, great nightlife, or opportunities for interesting days out. If you’re thinking of enrolling at Pearson College London, you will have access to Student Central, as well as a huge range of things to do / see as a result of studying in London.
5. Teaching styles
Standard courses will follow very similar structures in the way of modules etc. So to help narrow your choices down, consider the teaching values of your chosen University / College before applying. Pearson College London for example, focuses on connecting classroom to industry by having high contact hours and holding industry workshops and events. Pearson College London has also been awarded TEF Silver, demonstrating excellent teaching standards.
Another factor to consider before applying to uni is an institute’s alumni. What are the employability rates after graduation? What is their average salary? For example, the national average median salary for Business and administrative studies graduates is £21,000 (data taken from HESA). At Pearson Business School, the average median salary for our Business and administrative studies graduates is £25,000.
7. Career path
After looking at the course details and Alumni success stories, consider which career path you could take. If you know what industry you would like to get into, then make sure your chosen course will give you the qualifications you will need. If you’re unsure of what direction you would like to take in the future, then assess the opportunities offered by different Universities / Colleges before applying. Do they offer internships? Is the course broad enough to keep certain doors open? For example, studying Accounting at Pearson Business School will enable you to become fully exam qualified with ACCA and gain a masters qualification at the same time (so be sure to check what professional accreditations you could get as well).
8. Student loan
Investigate the cost of going to University. Use the Government website to calculate your estimated Maintenance loan (this will cover your living costs), and make sure you apply for your tuition loan in time (this will cover the course fees). Use our Access Platform to talk to current students and find out how they manage their finances, or find out more money saving tips here.
Calculate your estimated Maintenance Loan using the Government website, as this will give you an estimate for how much you will need to budget for accommodation. Take a look at different styles of accommodation and add this into the equation, as well as travel expenses (you can still apply for a maintenance loan if you’re living at home). You may need to look into getting a part time job, and some large chain stores also offer a transfer to different branches (so if you currently have a part time job, see if this could be a potential option). For more information about managing your living costs, click here.
10. Academic performance
When deciding on your firm and insurance choices, consider your predicted grades. Choose Universities / Colleges with realistic grade requirements, but also be aware of the clearing and adjustment procedures that may affect you in August. If you don't reach the entry requirements, Pearson College London also offers alternative entry routes, such as a Professional Workshop for Pearson Business School students, and aCreative Workshop for Escape Studio students.