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Study skills > Module 1 > Page 3


Applying to University

Adapted from S. Cottrell’s Study skills Handbook

Choosing your Subject

It is best to choose a third level degree which provides a logical progression from the subjects studied in your school leaving exams or which draws on personal preferences. This ensures that you have both the skills and the interest to do credit to your abilities.

Examine the Course Content

Request and examine course content carefully. Consider exactly what the course involves and what topics/ areas it covers. Does this sound interesting? Find out if a course is theoretical, practical or creative. This is very important to the level of success you can achieve given your personal preferences for learning. Remember that almost all courses require large amounts of reading and writing, and might also involve practical assignments.

Form a Coherent Programme

Some subjects in degree programmes match better than others. Speak to an advisor and consider your strengths and weaknesses when choosing your subjects.

Consider Career Opportunities

If you have a particular career in mind, ensure that your choice of course is suitable. Although not all courses are vocational (that is, lead directly to a particular job) some courses are more suited to certain careers than others. Consider issues such as whether a course is professionally accredited and speak to an advisor regarding career opportunities in the area. Perhaps your university has a mature students’ advisor you could visit or drop in to your university careers service.

Choosing a University

Each school, college or university is different and has a particular style or emphasis. Your choice may reflect geographical, financial or amenities considerations. Consider what is important to you and allow these factors to inform your choice.

Look at the prospectus, attend an open day or visit the University campus – these activities will help you to make the best decision for you.

Direct Entry

If you do not have the standard requirements on the CAO form i.e. do not have the required number of points for the particular course you wish to attend there is an alternative entry route known as Direct Entry or Non-standard Entry. Many colleges operate a direct entry or alternative admissions route which takes into account any disadvantages caused by the impact of your disability during primary or secondary education.

Legislation & Education

Under the Educational Act 1998 and Equal Status Act 2000 colleges are legally obliged to accommodate your educational needs.

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