Making the best choice: how to pick your ideal university
09 October 2023
This piece was written by Graphic Design BA(Hons) student Daisy about how she chose to study at Falmouth University.
Deciding which universities to apply for can be overwhelming and stressful, so here's a few tips to help make the process easier!
I would say step one when deciding on universities, is to ask at your school/college or ask the people around you which university they would recommend. This narrows down the vast amount of content, which can leave you not knowing where to start. This also gives you a good starting point to then look further into the unis that interest you. University websites give a great overview of their courses and you can even see what the students themselves have to say. Usefully on the Falmouth website there is an ‘Ask a Student’ section, so you can ask any questions you have to someone who has been in the exact same place as you before. If you're not sure which course you specifically would like to do, I would advise looking at multiple courses at a large range of universities, keeping in mind what is important to you (e.g. Location? Facilities?). Remember, you can select 5 choices on your UCAS application.
In my opinion, one of the most important steps in deciding which university is right for you, is actually visiting on an Open Day (or even just going to the town and looking around if you can’t make an Open Day!). This allows you to really get a feel for the place and whether you can imagine yourself living there for the next few years of your life. An Open Day gives you the perfect opportunity to ask any questions you need to ask in-person, see where you could be studying and just get a first-hand view of the university, which was vital in my experience.
I felt completely lost when trying to decide where to go to university, so I booked some Open Days and they allowed me to clearly see the decision I wanted to make. Some of the places I visited had seemed perfect online, but when I went in-person, my opinion changed and I chose not to apply there. However, when I went to the Falmouth Open Day I had a great experience, which told me that was the university I should choose. The campus felt very homely & inviting and the students giving the tours had great things to say - it was just great to be able to picture where I could be going and this took away a lot of the anxiety I had about moving to a different place.
I would advise parents/guardians to come along if possible, as this will reduce any stress they have around where you’ll be going, as they can put a place to the name! Visit the town and beach as well, if you can! Remember, you’ll be living in whatever town/city you chose as well as studying, so this is super important. Falmouth has so much to offer in this respect. It’s such a creative community, which is constantly inspiring - and if you love the sea, it's the perfect choice for university!
If you can’t go to an Open Day, then don't stress. There are a large range of alternatives on the Falmouth website, including the Virtual Experience page, which has loads of virtual events, videos, images, virtual tours and student blogs, allowing you to experience Falmouth from wherever you are, so you don't have to miss a thing!
So, I hope you now feel like you have a better place to start and choosing your university seems a little less overwhelming! I want to reassure you everything will work out in the end and, although it can seem quite stressful, it is so worth it as you will gain amazing experiences. To summarise, my top tips are: have a look at courses online on university websites, go to Open Days, explore the local area and ask questions to students who are currently studying.