A short guide on how to apply for college in the UK for life after High School. In this guide we’ll give you some advice on what should do before you apply, how to apply and what happens after.
Before applying it is worth doing a bit of research to give you some direction for the future or speak to a careers advisor. Do you have a career in mind? What qualifications do you need to achieve this career? Which colleges offer the qualifications you need? Are there any open days you could visit? Make a list of the colleges you want to apply for and visit their website to see how to apply.
College application forms are usually found online and they tend to ask for similar information. The best place to start would be to gather all the bits and pieces of information you need and have easy access to them. Here are a few things that you can be asked to provide when you apply for college:
The hard work is essentially done by the time you are ready to apply for college. You have everything you need to start. A couple of things to remember at this stage:
• Give yourself time! Don’t try and rush your applications through on your phone, while you wait for the bus with unreliable Wi-Fi. Set some time aside to complete each application form one at a time. Consider using a desktop or laptop rather than a phone or tablet with access to the information you have collated.
• Check your details carefully. After you apply for college, the College will usually invite you to an interview and they will need a reliable contact method for arrangements. So make sure you put in your details correctly otherwise you won’t hear anything!
Once you have submitted your application you should receive an email confirmation as well as an on screen message. You can expect the College to process your application and send you further communications by email, post or phone regarding your application and an interview date.
It can be a long time from submitting your application to starting college, here are some thing to look out for and forward to:
Remember if you change your mind about the course you have applied for – you can! If you change your mind get in touch with the college admissions team to make a change to your application – this shouldn’t affect your offer of place. There are lots of opportunities for you to learn more about your course choice which can help you decide if it is the one for you. Colleges have careers advisors and tutors who can provide you with some guidance, so book into to see them or visit a College Open Day to learn more. Check out our guide to getting the most out of college open events here
Dave has been working in the Education sector for over twenty years. During that time he has visited 100s of schools in the Lancashire region and helped thousands of students take their next steps after school providing support and careers advice and guidance. Dave is currently undertaking a Level 6 in Information Advice and Guidance to further his knowledge and skills in the sector. On a day to day basis Dave is working at Preston College as the Recruitment and Progression Manager for 14-19 year olds organising the College events such as Open Days, Tasters and Welcome Evenings. When he’s not on campus he will be visiting schools in the local area, delivering presentations, attending careers fairs and hosting workshops.