Statistics indicate the most common reasons for students not completing their degree are the course did not deliver in line with expectations or they did not settle in the environment. Many year 12 students will currently be preparing for making their UCAS application in 2013 by visiting universities. If used wisely, these visits will put you ahead of the game by ensuring you are ready to submit an early application in the autumn.

Research courses and universities which have a proven track record in delivering post-graduate internships or employment in jobs which both appeal to you, and suit your character and skills. As long as the resulting report is interpreted correctly, an online psychometric assessment exploring interests and personality traits can provide useful guidance on potential courses and careers.

Once you have short-listed, plan thoroughly for visits. Prepare questions in advance by reading the website and literature and make notes for reference. Ask questions about the specific course structure and syllabus. Some universities offer trial lectures so you can experience the course. Is it what you expected? How many modules are taken annually? How full is the lecture timetable? How much is delivered through smaller tutorials or independent study, project work or assignments? Satisfaction surveys indicate courses with more ‘teaching’ time, particularly when delivered in small groups, have the happiest students.

With courses lasting 3 years minimum, will you enjoy living in the environment? Does the accommodation in halls or student houses appeal or if you plan to live at home, will you cope with the commute long-term? How will you settle and make new friends? Do the clubs and activities provide for your interests or the opportunity to try interesting new things? Does the town or city offer r & r to meet your expectations?

For advice on choosing the right university course and career please contact us. You will find details by visiting our website: