Questions to ask at university open days

Questions to ask at university open days: Image of a university open day

There is indeed no doubt that the best way to learn more about prospective universities/colleges is by attending their open days. Once there, it is quite useless to simply walk around, checking out the place, without asking the proper questions. Sure it is important to look around to see if you like the campus, however, asking questions is the key to guiding your future decision regarding where you wish to study. In this posting, I shall be sharing with you some great questions you can ask at/during open days. These questions are by no means extensive, but should allow you to cover all the important bases.

Questions to ask at university open days: Image of a university campus

18 basic but great questions to ask at university open days:

Questions to ask at university open days: Image of a university building

  1. What types of degrees/courses are on offer?
  2. Are financial aid packages offered?
  3. Are tutoring programmes offered?
  4. How large are the average class sizes?
  5. How many students live on campus?
  6. What types of extra mural activities are made available/offered?
  7. Is there a student union?
  8. How safe are the dorms and campus? What security measures are in place?
  9. Are there opportunities for part time jobs in and around the campus?
  10. What teaching/instruction methods are in use at the university/college?
  11. What dorm choices are on offer?
  12. Are any types of pets allowed in the dorms?
  13. What are the basic dorm rules?
  14. Are students allowed to hang items in the dorm rooms (on the walls)?
  15. What assessment methods are in use at the college/university?
  16. Are graduate job placements offered by the university/college after graduation?
  17. Does the university/college run job fairs?
  18. What documents are needed in order to enrol and when do application registrations close?

Questions to ask at university open days: Image of a university building

Do some research regarding what other questions to ask during open days, and whatever you do, make sure you DO attend several open days before deciding on which college/varsity you will be attending. Three or four years is a very long time to spend at a university/college you despise, so be sure to make the right choice!

xxxxxx

Academics Can Kill Your Sanity 2017

(www.academicscankillyoursanity.com)

Edit: Be sure to ONLY apply at colleges you can afford to attend. It is always devastating when someone gets accepted into a school, and then cannot afford to pay the tuition. Also, remember to apply for scholarships/bursaries asap, if this is the route you wish to go in! Just keep in mind that bursaries and scholarships are not ever guaranteed, so don’t bank on these.

Good luck! Here’s hoping you get into your varsity/college of choice!

Sometimes our elders do know what’s best

elders do know what's best image : image of an old mans hands holding a cane

The title of this piece might sound terribly clichéd, but trust me; sometimes your elders do know what’s best. The main reason for this fact is simple; they have tons of life experience!

elders do know what's best image : image of the words, 'experience is the mother of wisdom'

When you study to become a teacher you are taught that the best way to learn anything is through experience. When I was younger (still in my twenties to be exact), I would be the first person disagreeing right now, if it was me reading this article. However, various research studies have shown that experience does indeed give us the edge, and make us wiser.

elders do know what's best image : image of the words 'research results'

I have found the above to be true as I got older (and wiser) myself. There is hardly a day that goes by that I don’t think to myself, “my mother was right”, when contemplating something; or simply seeing mistakes some others around me are making. Even now that I am older and through my own life (and career) experience, I can often see what some younger people are doing wrong. However, I rather choose to remain silent, since I know I would not have listened to anyone but myself when I was their age.

elders do know what's best image : image of an owl

According to anthropologists, in prehistoric times the collective knowledge of elders was the key to surviving. Yet in this day and age we rather shun the expertise of our elders and assume we know better; just because we studied or have our own so called “experience” in life and certain fields.

elders do know what's best image : 'prehistoric men knew the value of listening to their elders', image of a white beard

Many of the ‘now elders’, lived in/through the times and experiences we are now currently learning about in school and at varsity. Does this fact then not naturally make them (elders) a much better source of information than our textbooks or the internet? Since who can argue those that actually lived through and experienced something first hand?

elders do know what's best image: 'never argue an expert of life', image of an old lady

I hope after reading this piece you now have a more open mind when it comes to the whole ‘knowledge with age’ movement/belief. And, who knows, the next time you actually listen when an older person gives you some advice, you might just learn something useful, and if not, what would you stand to lose for taking the time to listen? That’s right, nothing.

xxxxxxx

Academics Can Kill Your Sanity 2017

(www.academicscankillyoursanity.com)

Edit: I was thinking about this a lot last night again, and just want to add a few things to this piece. Our elders were around before we were born (okay this sounds very ‘duh’ but just bear with me; I swear its part of the point I am trying to make). Let’s work on a 20 year age gap between us and the youngest ‘elder’ we might know. Even though a 20 year gap hardly makes someone an ‘elder’, it is a good minimum gap to work with for this example. Okay so we have an ‘elder’ that is trying to tell us something. She is a woman that is 20 years older than what we are; that is she was on this earth for 20 years longer than us. We have a four year B-degree and a one year post graduate qualification. So we have 5 years worth of study behind our names. However, we have no experience in the fields we studied in yet and as we all know, experience is the actual learning tool; not the information we get from textbooks. So we have 5 years ‘book knowledge’, and our elder has 20 years worth of physical learning experiences over us. We are visiting with our ‘elder’ over a meal. A debate over something random ensues; whether having children in your early 20’s is better than in your early 30’s. Your elder, with tons of experience in the matter; seeing her friends/sisters having children in both their early 20’s and 30’s, is pro early 30’s. In other words, she (your elder) has witnessed first hand all that raising a child entails. You on the other hand think having kids in your early 20’s is better. Why do you believe this? Well, because you read something about it in a textbook once (even though you cannot remember exactly what you read and in which book it was; because lets face it, 90% of what we learn from books we forget after exams are over). Who do you think would argue the best case and be the ‘most correct’ in this instance?

I say it again: Age = Experience. Experience = Wisdom. So maybe our elders do know what’s best after all.

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Need some more good advice? If so read ” How to tell your parents you plan on quitting college/varsity “.

How to curb your homesick blues

Leaving home and going to university/college can be quite a big adjustment and many new first year students find this transition an incredibly hard one to make; often leaving them homesick. However, you can make your move a little less daunting by following these tips:

  1. Arrange to have a Skype session with your family/friends at least once a week during your first four months of moving to college. This way the distance between you and your loved ones will not seem so huge
  2. Keep regular contact with your nearest and dearest on social platforms/apps such as WhatsApp. We are living in the age of technology so make use of it. You mom will in anyhow most probably harass you endlessly on Facebook and WhatsApp; just like you never left home!
  3. Try and make new friends ASAP. This is easier than it sounds if you just know how. Sign up for and get involved in various social clubs, go to every meet-and-greet you hear about and just be active in college live in general; you are guaranteed to meet new people this way.
  4. Make your room/surroundings more homey by bringing your own curtains and bedding from home, adding a plant or two, putting up posters, pinning photo’s of friends and loved ones to notice boards (or the wall); anything that makes the ‘living space’ feel like your own.

Good luck and remember, being ‘the new gal/guy’ is not something that lasts forever; neither do ‘the homesick blues’.

xxxxxxx

Academics Can Kill Your Sanity 2017

(www.academicscankillyoursanity.com)