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Higher Education Q&A

Public Services students attended a talk provided by the Student Information Centre who told them about Higher Education (HE), one of the main pathways college students take after finishing a Level 3 course.

Of the students in attendance, they said they were interested in a wide range of degrees, including Criminology, Professional Policing, Paramedic Science, and Business & Economics. They have even considered the universities that they will apply for, including Brighton, Kent, Canterbury Christchurch and even right here, at Canterbury College.

These talks are delivered by the Student Information Centre (SIC) take place throughout the year and prepare Level 3 students for applying to university, as well as allowing them to ask our careers experts questions not only about the process but about the general university experience. Taking part in the talks doesn’t mean that you are tied in to applying for university, so if you realise that a degree isn’t for you, there are so many other options available!

Read on for a few highlights from the talk, but if you are interested, don’t hesitate to contact the SIC, situated on the ground floor of P Block, during their opening hours.

Funding is a big concern for most, but it doesn’t have to be

There are other options you can choose from instead of uni, including Higher National Diplomas (HNDs) or higher NVQs. You can also take up Foundation Degrees, which usually involve a year of intense study that prepares you to follow on to study a degree.

For more information on Higher Education Apprenticeships, click here.

What to do next

UCAS - which is the website where you can find almost every HE course available in the UK – opens its applications in September every year, with a closing date for ‘guaranteed consideration’ closing on 15th January, every year. Guaranteed consideration means that, if you apply for university during this time, universities will consider your application before accepting or rejecting it. After this date, you may still apply for universities, but they have no obligation to look over your application, meaning that you may get rejected, even if you get the right grades, so it’s best that you get your applications in nice and early!

Book an Open Day (or 5!)

Open Days, much like the ones you may have been to for College or school, are an opportunity for you to see, first-hand, what the university you are interested in is like. These are very important, as something as simple as the first-year accommodation (called Halls of Residence) could mean the difference between you accepting or rejecting an offer at a university. Not only will you get an appreciation of the university facilities and staff, but you also get a more general view of the town or city that you may live in, and also how far from home it is – all important considerations; the university experience is not just a classroom but a life-changing event and everything inside and outside of the university campus should be researched.

One student in the class had been on an open day and said that they “learned a lot about the course, as we went through modules and saw some examples of work done by current students at the uni, but I’m not sure that that university itself was for me.”

Can’t make it to an Open Day? Not to worry

UCAS Fairs are a great way to interact with universities all in one go – you may find universities you hadn’t considered that may do courses you are interested in, and also gives you the chance to meet university representatives from places you might not be able to travel to. The next one in Kent will be held on 27th March 2020 (however, this may be a little late for those considering entering university on 2020/21 year).

However you decide to progress after college, it's always a good idea to keep your options open. Mel from the SIC was sure to remind everyone in attendance that "Just because you have come to this talk, doesn't mean that you're locked into going to university if you decide you don't want to!" So with that in mind, be sure to keep a look out for your chance to have your questions ansewers about Higher Education.

UCAS applications for 2020/21 entry are being accepted now and close on the 15th January 2020.