Student Ambassador talking to a parent at High Wycombe open day

101 On Open Days

101 On Open Days

Choosing which university to study at is a daunting process, there are so many universities to choose from and all of them want you to study with them. As you research which universities offer your perfect course, you’ll end up being in inundated with so much information that it is difficult to keep track of what information came from who and the choosing process can become overwhelming. This is when open days are useful.

So, where do you start when attending an open day? There are some obvious things to point out, but they’re very easy to forget.

Pre-book spaces

Firstly, make sure that you pre-book a spaces on the open day, that you wish to attend, for you and your guests. Many universities require you to book a space to know how many people to accommodate for, so it is important that you know who you’re bringing with you when you attend - if this is your first open day, I advise bringing a parent/guardian/friend because sometimes they know what to ask when you don’t!

Young female student on a laptop at desk
Plan logistics

Secondly, ensure you know how you’re getting there and the timings of the day before you go. Planning your day ahead of time takes a lot of stress out of the day and means you’re able to spend more time at the university and the local area. Most universities will offer some guidance around the day, this will be useful to you too as it means that you can plan when you need to be in certain places and when you will have free time to explore campus and the surrounding area.

train station - student railcard
There’s no such thing a stupid question

Open days can get very busy and overwhelming; however, it is important that you ask any questions that you feel may provide you with information that may aid your decision. So, ask anything about course content, student life, opportunities available to you. You may even want to ask where the best café is in town or even the places to get pancakes! There will be lots of information available during the day so it may be a good idea to take notes to help you remember.

Male student sitting with lecture getting help with work
Write down your thoughts

After you have attended an open day, it may be useful to write out a list of pros and cons of the university. This may include reviewing the location (and how easy it is for you to travel home), the local area, expenses (consider the local living costs too), the course, and the accommodation. It will help you to compare to another university that you visit.

Student writing
Reach out and talk with others

Lastly, it is important to remember that you are never alone when it comes to deciding the future of your education. Talk to friends, peers, teachers, parents or even current students and lecturers at the university, everyone is here to help you make the best decision for you!

Female graduand taking a selfie with friend