With so much buzz online on the latest career trends and popular university courses, it can be a daunting task to find the right university options. Don't even know how or where to begin looking for a university? Here are five things to consider:
Many students find it difficult to identify the single subject that he or she would like to pursue.
Spend some time thinking of your interests, and the activities you have been involved in that may point you in the direction you have been subconsciously facing in. If you have chosen your subject, are there schools you already know of that offer the education you seek?
The academic strength of a university is often not the same across all subject areas. It is therefore important that the universities you have shortlisted are well recognised in your intended area of study. You should be looking at subject rankings of the universities - not just overall rankings.
Some campuses may be smaller but offer more diversity and international connections, while larger institutions have better resources and networks for specific industries after graduation.
Are they internationally diverse or reputable in their fields? An internationally diverse faculty means students can establish a more global mindset.
Are you thinking of studying in a university located in a quiet town with lots of nature, or a vibrant city with arts and culture at your doorstep? Are you focussed on learning within a cohesive and inclusive environment, or from a top-notch, intensive programme where you aim to become the best in your chosen field?
Studying overseas can be costly and you should certainly look at your finances. It helps to have an estimate of how much you would need (inclusive of tuition fees, accommodation, living expenses, and other ancillary expenses like textbooks and medical coverage) for the entire duration of the undergraduate programme overseas.
The currency exchange rate of the day should also be included in your considerations.
What are your plans upon graduation? Are you thinking of a career back home, or are you looking to be more internationally mobile?
An overseas education can open such doors for you right after graduation. Look for references or success stories from the university alumni: what have they achieved after graduation? Are they leaders of the world that you can aspire to be?
Look online or speak to those who have graduated from the university or city you are considering, but take these opinions with a pinch of salt, as opinions always differ.
It helps to cover all bases before you make a decision. Run your thoughts by family and friends, seek the advice of people you know who have graduated before you, or attend some university fairs or expos where you can speak directly with university representatives.