Get the most out of university open days

Back view of two students with backpacks walking under trees outside a university building

If you’re thinking about going to university, it’s important to find out as much as you can about the course and university you’re applying for. Open days are a great way to get all the information you need.

Here are our top tips to make the most of your visit.

Ask the right questions

An open day is the best opportunity you’ll have to ask questions about the university, so think about the information that will help you make an informed decision. Talk to the course leaders and current students to make sure you get a fully rounded picture.

What will I learn on this course?

Remember that courses with similar titles can offer completely different approaches. Some universities may focus on theory, while others may have a more practical approach. This is a good time to find out exactly what you’ll learn and how you’ll be taught, so you can make sure you’ll make the most of your experience.

Are there opportunities to do work placements?

Doing work experience can put you ahead of the competition when it comes to applying for jobs in the future. Check out whether the university you’re going to has good links with employers and gives you the chance to enhance your CV.

What kind of jobs do graduates go on to do? 

You may have an idea of the job you want to do at the end of the course, but it’s worth finding out if this is likely. If you know what you want to do, ask if this is the right course or if there are certain papers you can take to help you get that role.

How’s the social life?

Having a work-life balance is important. Take some time to find out about the clubs and societies you could get involved with. Not only are these a great way to make new friends but they also offer you the opportunity to gain new skills and give your CV a boost.

Other things to consider

Logistics

Making the most of the open day means ensuring you have enough time to have a proper look around and ask all the questions you have. Plan your route to the campus and pick up a map so you know where you’re going when you arrive. If you can, get hold of a schedule in advance and book the information sessions you want to attend.

Key contacts

Work out in advance if there are any specific lecturers you want to meet, and try to book a time to speak with them. If you can, take the contact details of the people you speak to on the day so you can get in touch with any further questions.

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