First off, there is no one universally perfect or best university. Just like humans are great in some aspects and flawed in others, so are Universities. I am not here to tell you which Uni to choose (frankly an impossible task), I am here to guide you on how to choose a Uni whose features are tailored to best suit you and your chosen Msc course.
THINGS TO LOOK OUT FOR:
–Eligibility Requirements: Before you consider everything else, you should be able to meet the University’s eligibility requirements, the most important being the grade.
In my opinion though, it is worth giving a shot even with a lower grade as long as you have an SOP that bangs! But it doesn’t mean you should hold your breathe, cross your fingers and keep applying to Universities whose eligibility requirements you don’t meet.
–University Ranking For Your Course: There’s a difference between a generally high ranking UK Uni and a course specific high ranking UK Uni. While The University of Aberdeen ranks no 20 as a UK Uni, it’s Petrochemical Engineering and many petroleum courses rank No1 (same as many other Scottish Uni’s). Therefore it is your job to not just search for the best Uni and choose Oxford based on that, but for your search to be course specific too.
–Availability of Course: Again when you are taking a course that is not offered by all University’s your search needs to be more thorough.
I chose to study Psychology conversion in the University of Aberdeen because it is not just one of the top UK Universities that teach Psychology, it also has one of the earliest academic Psychology appointments and is one of the oldest.Donate
In addition to that it is among the top 5 when it comes to Psychology (CONVERSION). So it may not be top 5 for Psychology generally, but it is for conversion MSc. Basically, do your RESEARCH THOROUGHLY.
–Tuition Fees: UK Universities have the most diverse case of tuition fees. It all depends on the University and course. Some Universities require application fees from the get go, some will give discounts on fees for international students, some Universities tuition fees are generally high, and higher yet for some peculiar courses, while some are generally low. If you are self-funding, you may want to put that into account (pun intended).
–Location: Everyone’s preference for location differs. And that plays a very underestimated role in determining the seamlessness of your MSc year.
I am not a city, flashy, hustle and bustle person, so I steered clear of London. I have always loved the Scottish Highlands. From my research, the greenery and water will give me more clarity and it will be good for my mental health. Aberdeen is more remote and one of the cities farthest away from London, oddly, I prefer that.
–Cost of Living: Check your pocket!!!! With inflation, the UK is not smiling. Whether you are self-funding or on sponsorship, you may want to weigh your pocket in accordance with the cost of living in your chosen City. Check their rent, bills, expenses, feeding, everything!
–Weather: It is generally a country with intense weather conditions, but some might be less favorable than others. Going to the UK for the first time during the January intake (esp) will not be funny for a person used to warmer climes. Now top this with the fact that you are going to Scotland, and not just Scotland, but Aberdeen! It is freezing. If you are not a cold person, please search for warmer places. Like I said earlier, an environment plays a huge role in making your MSc year a success… or not!.
Bottomline, looking for just any University that offers your course based on the fact that you like the sound of the name or it seems posh or you have a higher chance of running into Daniel Kaluuya on the streets (doesn’t sound like such a bad idea though) or because of your football team might be one of the worse decisions you can make for your MSc.
Have you made these analyses? Which University have you decided on and why?
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From Hafsat, With Love.