You must ensure you understand the nature of the subject you are considering, especially if it is new to you.
- A course in ecology, for example, might deal with conservation and 'green' issues. In addition many ecology courses cover the scientific study of the interaction between living organisms and their environments. Conservation issues may only be peripheral.
- Language courses vary considerably, from those concerned largely with literature to those which concentrate on translation, culture and contemporary area studies.
- Psychology is another subject, which can vary depending on whether the course focuses on the social or the scientific end of the subject.
You must be interested in the subject.
- You will spend a large proportion of three to six years immersed in the subject and that will be hard work if you find it boring.
- You will probably be more motivated and perform better if you are excited about your subject.
- You are also likely to perform better if you have an aptitude for the subject. A course may be really interesting and lead to a guaranteed high-flying career, but if you are no good at it, you may end up performing badly or even failing altogether.
Do you have some aptitude for the subject?
- There are some tests you can do to help you identify subjects you are likely to be good at.
- UCAS launched a new course finder website in June 2012, which will enable you to find courses based on subject, provider and location.
A good place to start is by looking at your current studies.
- What is yor strongest A level or IB subject?
- Which part of your BTEC do you enjoy most?
- This 'subject fit' may offer good pointers to the types of degrees on offer because the first year of many University degrees is in part designed to fit into previous A level or other post-16 study.
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