Should I Go To University?Posted: 23rd of January 2017 by
If you are wondering if university is the right choice for you it is worth taking some time to think about why you are thinking of going and what you hope to get out of it. It’s fine to feel unsure about what you are going to do with your life after A-levels, and the barrage of well-meaning advice from friends, family, teachers, and even sites like this can be confusing. While we can’t advise you what is best for you, with a few thoughtful questions you should be able to see what may be the best option for you and your future. So, if you are wondering whether you should go to university or not, perhaps you should ask yourself…
‘What career do I want?’
OK, so this is a bit of a big one to start with, but you need to think about it. It may seem like the easy option to just sign up to go to university after college – basically giving yourself three more years to work out what you want to do – but this could just be an expensive and potentially pointless exercise. Unless you know what you want to do, you can’t really know if higher education is the right thing for you. While some careers need a degree, many are now available via a professional qualification like an apprenticeship. It is worth looking to see if your chosen career can be accessed via a non-university route like an apprenticeship – just so you know your options. Once you know what you want to do, you will be able to work out what you need to do to get there – without that, you are just guessing.
If you aren’t really sure what career you are looking to get into from going to university, could it be that you are only going to university because your friends are?
While it is always nice to be part of the crowd, choosing to go to university without a career plan could leave you choosing a course that doesn’t suit you. Picking the wrong course could leave you struggling to keep going while you are away at uni, so you need to think carefully about what course you are choosing and why.
Going to university isn’t the only way to get a degree - have you looked at the alternatives?
If you feel that you definitely need to get a degree, there are other options which may save you quite a lot of money compared to going to university. Distance learning is an increasingly popular option, allowing you to manage your own time and even save on living costs and fees compared to the traditional university route. That said, you will need to be organised with your studies as you won’t have a tutor reminding you that you need to be doing your work! Alternatively, you might even be able to get someone to pay your uni fees for you with a sponsored degree!
That said, is university even the right choice for you at all?
If you want to start earning money it might be worth looking at going into an apprenticeship or full-time work right away. You might consider looking for job opportunities for school or college leavers so that you know you are entering the workplace at the right level to work your way up.
You could even decide to take this natural break in your studies to go on a Gap Year or work abroad in order to see the world.
University is an expensive option with fees of around £9,000 per year before you even think about living costs, so you really need to think about whether it is worth building up so much debt for something your heart may not be in – or even something that is unnecessary for your career goals.
Of course, ultimately, university is all about learning. If you want to go further in your studies, like education and love learning then of course university is great – especially if it ties in with getting your dream career. If not, you really need to think if you are going to university for the right reasons or not…
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