Tag Archives: university

New Year, New Opportunities?

With the advent of a New Year, people often take time to reflect and start thinking about future aspirations. Maybe:

  • There’s something you’ve always been interested in – like learning a new skill or hobby, for example.
  • You’re considering a change of direction in terms of your career or professional development.
  • You want to do something to because you’re motivated by improving your knowledge in a particular area.

There are a whole host of ways you could go about making these changes – there may be local workshops, adult education classes or short courses provided by education providers in the area. For more significant changes, you could be looking at retraining through a degree or professional qualification.

Careers advice:

If you’d like to explore avenues for developing yourself or doing something different but you’re unsure about what you’d like to do, perhaps talking to a careers advisor could help. Visit http://careersadvice.direct.gov.uk/  for more information about contacting a qualified careers advisor.

Study options:

If you do decide to take up study; it doesn’t have to mean studying on a full-time course; there are a multitude of part-time or short course options that might be appropriate, depending on the subject you’re interested in. But, if you do want to consider more substantive study options, it’s important to be fully clued up on what’s available and what you’ll need to do. You’ll need to research courses, study commitment and costs for starters.

Finding a course to suit you:

Tools such as www.hotcourses.com can help you to find everything from short courses to postgraduate study in your area or further afield. Postgraduate study options can be researched at www.prospects.ac.uk. The UCAS website has a great course search function, allowing you to explore available full-time undergraduate courses. And, of course, university and college websites will tell you more about what’s on offer at particular institutions.

Money matters:

How much will the course you’re looking at cost? Is there any financial support available? Here are a few starting points you can use to find out more about possible sources of funding:

  • Information about financial help for adult learners can be found here
  • Want information about student financial support for University and Higher Education courses? Look here for more details.
  • Postgraduate funding is different to undergraduate funding and there is, generally, no financial support available through the government. However, there are exceptions to this, such as certain NHS-funded courses, Social Work courses and PGCE qualifications. Prospective postgraduate students often need to be resourceful in seeking out funding opportunities. If your proposed study is related to your current job role, is it feasible to talk to your employer about support for the course – either as study leave or in terms of paying for the course? Are there any relevant scholarships or bursaries available? The Prospects website has links to resources which can help you find any such schemes.

First steps:

Whatever spurs you on, you can start taking steps towards your goals and exploring options open to you. If you’d like to chat to a course adviser about any courses offered at Birmingham City University, please contact Choices on 0121 331 5595 or email us.

Forthcoming Subject Specific Open Days – January and February 2009

If you missed the chance to visit Birmingham City University at one of our main open days, a number of our faculties will be holding subject specific open days throughout the academic year. Information about confirmed dates is updated periodically on our website at http://www.bcu.ac.uk/opendays/faculty/.

Many courses also offer the opportunity for prospective students to attend a visit day once they have applied to us. Subjects such as Media and Communication and undergraduate Education courses don’t have specific subject open days but can offer these opportunities for applicants to visit at an appropriate point in the admissions process. Continue reading Forthcoming Subject Specific Open Days – January and February 2009

Graduate options: considering postgraduate study

Postgraduate study can provide a rewarding and exciting route to developing yourself personally, academically or professionally. There can be a whole host of reasons as to why those who decide to take up further study choose to do so at different stages of their lives.

However you arrive at a decision to study, it’s important that you are comfortable with any decision you reach, considering the full range of options available to you in terms of course selection, institution and funding.

Finding a suitable course

There are a myriad of course options available to prospective students. Think about what you want to get out of postgraduate study. Do you want to enhance your knowledge in a subject related to your bachelor’s degree? Are you seeking a course which will provide a professionally recognised qualification in a particular area? Do you want to change direction completely? You need to ask yourself as many questions as you need to in order to draw out relevant information on which you can base your decision. Continue reading Graduate options: considering postgraduate study

Still time to apply for a course beginning in January 2009

If you’re looking for a higher education course which starts before next September, there’s still a chance to apply for available courses commencing in January at Birmingham City University. With a range of courses on offer, from Business to IT-related subjects at both undergraduate and postgraduate level, you could be on your way to achieving a qualification in the new year. To find out more click here.

If you wish to be considered for one of these courses, you need to complete and submit an application form as soon as possible. Please see the individual course pages on the main website for further details.

Think about: studying for a career in health

When considering studying at university, many people think about the benefits of embarking on a course which will allow them to not only progress academically, but one which will prepare them for a specific profession. The healthcare field provides challenging, rewarding and fulfilling careers to many people who enter into a variety of different roles, from clinical or medical through to more general support services.

Here, we look at key information for a number of health-related courses which offer both professionally focused and more general routes for prospective students seeking out opportunities in healthcare. For links to further information about careers in these different areas, please visit here.

Nursing

Nursing is a highly rewarding career. Qualified nurses to work closely with patients to support then in the delivery of their care and administer treatment. Nurses work closely with members of the multi-disciplinary healthcare team and have a crucial role in the planning and delivery of client care. With options to initially train in one of four branch specialisms: Adult, Child, Mental Health and Learning Disabilities, qualified nurses may then progress to further specialise within their professional area.

Continue reading Think about: studying for a career in health

Applying for a Professionally-Focused Course: Researching Subject Areas

When prospective students are applying for courses which offer a particular professional focus, it’s often important to ensure that the application demonstrates clear justification as to why an applicant thinks they are suitable for the given subject. Supporting knowledge and practical skills may be things that university admissions tutors look for when considering applications. As a general rule, it’s advisable for prospective students to check with individual institutions to find out what constitutes a good personal statement in relation to the subject they’re applying for.

The following weblinks are useful sources of information for prospective students considering applying for specific professionally-orientated subject areas offered at Birmingham City University. Whilst not an exhaustive list by any means, it may be helpful in terms of providing a starting point to research particular professions or to refer to when considering relevant personal skills and/or experiences that might be discussed within a personal statement. Continue reading Applying for a Professionally-Focused Course: Researching Subject Areas

Tips for Writing your Personal Statement

When applying to university, a good personal statement can really help to differentiate your application from the potentially hundreds of others you’re competing with. It’s your opportunity to sell yourself to university admissions tutors and demonstrate to them that you’re focused and committed to the subject you’re applying for. 

Many applications are let down by poorly considered personal statements so it’s well worth spending some time carefully contemplating the impact of your statement in order to maximise your chances of making a successful application. Writing one can seem like a daunting task but with a little preparation and planning it need not be. Choices shares some tips to consider when compiling yours.

Have a plan

Before you begin, jot down some key points that need to be included in your personal statement.  These could include your motivation for choosing the subject, your career aspirations, details of relevant work experience (paid or voluntary), placements, evidence of your strengths and details of your personal qualities or skills. Continue reading Tips for Writing your Personal Statement

Autumn Links Round-up for Prospective Undergrad Students

The new academic year’s now underway, meaning that our first year students have reached the end of the application process and are at the beginning of their life at university! Many people will now be in the same position they were in this time last year, with the seemingly daunting task of applying to university ahead of them.

As prospective students start thinking about where to begin, here’s a quick round-up of some useful websites to get you started:

UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admissions Service):

Information about the admissions process, deadlines, available subjects and links to university websites. You can apply for full-time undergraduate courses at universities across the UK using their online application system.

Opendays.com

Searchable calendar of university open days. Open days are a must if you want to be in a good position to decide which universities end up on your UCAS form! Seeing the university first hand will help for you to get a feel for the place and decide whether it’s right for you.

Direct.gov.uk

A good site for general information about student finance, housing and student life. There are also links to online student finance application forms.

Additional resources for prospective students considering studying in Birmingham:

Birmingham Live and Learn

A new blog-based website written by university students in Birmingham for prospective or new students. Bloggers are students from Birmingham City University, Aston University and the University of Birmingham. A great way of getting a students-eye view of the city.

Visit Birmingham

General information about the city of Birmingham, and a good starting point for those travelling to Birmingham for an open day who may be looking for accommodation in the city during their visit.

 

Arriving at University

Starting university is an exciting time. Not only will you be embarking on a new course, but you’ll be meeting new people, possibly be living in a new city and adapting to university life – all at once! With so many things going on, here’s just a few essentials for new undergraduate students to think about when joining university.

Food shopping

Amidst all the excitement and upheaval, you’d be surprised the number of students who forget to sort out the essentials – like food! Think about the staple items you’ll need to tide you over for the first week and plan what you’ll need so you don’t have to make several trips to the supermarket. Stick within your budget – if you start out as you mean to go on, you stand a better chance of not running out of money by the end of term. Above all, make sure you eat properly.

Not sure of what to stock up on or stuck for ideas of what to cook? Get some ideas here http://www.studentrecipes.com/ and here http://www.bbc.co.uk/food/news_and_events/events_student1.shtml.

Register with a doctor and dentist

There’s only one thing that’s worse than feeling ill or having a raging toothache, and that’s feeling ill or having toothache and not being registered with a doctor or dentist. Hopefully, you’ll not need to see them too often, but it’s essential that you sign up with them when you arrive. Many universities have practices they have links with, so you should check with them to find out more.

Birmingham City University students can find out more about their local doctors and dentists practices at:

http://www.bcu.ac.uk/studentservices/healthcare/register_doctor.html  

http://www.bcu.ac.uk/studentservices/healthcare/register_dentist.html

Find out more about healthcare services at Birmingham City University here. Continue reading Arriving at University