How to Choose University: Tips to Make a Smart Choice
You are about to finish school. You are at the crossroads trying to choose a perfect university. You have to put a lot of thinking into this matter as this should be a place to suit all your needs. It is important to take into account not only course, but also things like location, size, scholarship, as well as type of an institution. Think of the best environment for yourself, a place that will inspire and motivate a freshman to reach out for the stars.
Where to Begin?
We live in a world of great opportunities. If you dream big and want to make a difference, then just go for it. A good beginning is half a battle, so you should start your journey from the right place. Prioritize all criteria and start searching for that right place.
Make a list of colleges and universities you like and choose those that attract you the most, then carry out small research on each of them. Make notes on every aspect and weigh up all pros and cons. Next year you are going to leave home and start a new chapter of your life, so a university should satisfy all your needs.
What Do I Want to Study?
The research should begin with a main question: “Who do I want to be?” Students have to choose a subject they find interesting and want to be professionals in it. Once you make up your mind whether you are interested in Math, English, Medicine, etc., the number of possible colleges/universities will go down, for instance, from 30 to 10 or even less.
Leave your hometown for college or not to leave? That is a question every student should find an answer to. College is not just about education and getting a degree. It is about exploring things, traveling, meeting new people, etc. You should decide whether you want to get a degree in your country or abroad. Both options have pros and cons, so you have to choose what will be the best for you. While studying abroad, you get a chance to discover a new culture, learn a new language, etc. In case you don’t want to move to another country, you will stay closer to home, so it would be great to see parents more often, etc. What is more, think of the climate. What weather is the most suitable for you? When you have exact answers to all these questions, choosing a university will be much easier.
Next point in your list of university features should be size. Take a look at small universities that enroll only 50 students a year, and big ones, like Harvard, whose students’ body varies from 19,000 to 21,000. Going to university is a turning point in your life, so make the right choice and take into account the following things:
- Is your hometown big or small?
- Was it a city or countryside?
- Would you prefer to live in a place where no one knows you, or are you an outgoing person who cannot imagine their life without communication?
All these aspect really matter. What is more, bigger colleges have more facilities for students, as well as bigger campuses. But small ones are more individualized. Here you can get more personalized attention and experience. And remember, it should be a comfortable place for you.
Nowadays there is a great variety of colleges and universities, and all of them are different in their nature. You might consider adding the following points to your list:
- Is it a public or private school?
- Is it single sex or coed?
- Does it have a narrow area of study, or does it provide broad education?
- Research vs teaching and learning, what are you looking for?
Study several college guides, or even visit the universities you like to see a full picture. Once you have the answers, you will narrow down the list of universities and get one step closer to school of your dreams.
Cost and Perks of Studying
Cost of study at university is also an important feature that will help you choose a suitable one. The price varies from university to university, but there is a number of ways how to cut down the expenses. For instance, you can apply for scholarship, or if you are a good football player, you can make grades while playing. Don’t forget to take into account that public universities might have different fees for in-state and out-of-state students. While private colleges have equal prices for everyone, but may have privately-funded scholarships.
It is hard to choose a university, but with a little of thinking and some research, you will make a good choice and find your perfect place to study.