Year 12 and thinking about Uni? We want you to take advantage of every opportunity available so you can make an informed decision about what you do after sixth form and, at the same time, fill your CV and Personal Statement with plenty of great evidence of your enthusiasm. Here are just some of the many opportunities available right here on the doorstep…

Summer Schools

These are fantastic opportunities to live at a university for 3-5 days, experience student life, attend lectures, explore the student facilities and meet staff. There’s a good chance that you’ll also receive help with writing your Personal Statement and completing your UCAS application for next year. However, these residential schools are typically only on offer to certain students so make time to check the eligibility criteria carefully before starting your application.

The University of Bristol is offering one of the Sutton Trust summer schools in July. There’s a wide range of courses to choose from including Law, Medicine, science subjects and literature, but the deadline to apply is in early March so, if you are interested, why not take a look and check the eligibility criteria which include attending a state-funded secondary school/college and being in year 12. There’s more on Careersnearhere:

The University of Bath has three summer schools for 2017: Social Sciences (in June), Science (in July) and Engineering (also in July): the closing date for all three is late March and there’s a great video about the summer schools on the University website. As above, there are academic requirements such GCSE grades as well as other eligibility criteria; examples of which include being the first generation in the family to go to Uni (i.e. your parents didn’t go) and/or having experienced difficult family or individual circumstances that have affected your performance in exams or the likelihood of your going to university. As above, it is really important that you research this carefully before applying.

Specialist Days

UWE Bristol have Subject Taster Days for those in Year 12 (and 13). The idea is to give students an increased understanding of higher education, through subject-specific workshops, presentations and practical-related activities which are delivered by lecturers and Student Ambassadors. Examples include a Subject Taster Day for ‘Accounting, Banking and Finance’ and a ‘Nursing and Allied Health Professions Taster Day’. There’s a calendar of dates for other subjects during the year.

The University of Bath offer Enrichment Days for those in Year 12. Examples include one for Psychology and another for Sport. As before, there are eligibility criteria to consider, but assuming you meet that criteria, either your teacher may want to arrange a group visit or you can apply individually by downloading the form from the University website. These days cover different topics and are designed to complement the A-Level curriculum and improve your understanding of a subject by enabling you to spend a day on campus studying a particular topic and exploring it in-depth. You’ll get to see what university is like, including the learning, teaching and the campus environment. You’ll also get to meet and talk current students about their actual life at university and tour the campus.

Visiting the campus

All the Unis hold Open Days during the year – SGS College, for example. And we regularly promote these Open Events on as well as any alternatives such as Student-led Tours and even Self-Guided Tours; both of which we covered in a Blog here:

Specifically, for those in Year 12, UWE Bristol offer Campus Visits which deliver an awareness of the potential benefits of higher education, an experience of learning in a university setting, an understanding of the transition to higher education and student life and an awareness of the range of different courses and subjects available to study at higher education.

And Bath Spa University advertise school and college visits which include Year 12. The University tailor these visits to the specific requirements of your school and can, for example, focus on a subject, an aspect of the application process or of university life.


If you can’t make an advertised Open Day or Campus Tour for any reason, there are usually alternatives. The Universities and Colleges have excellent websites which include details about all the things you might see at an event: the sports and social facilities, accommodation, campus layout, the Department and equipment available. Many, such as the University of Bath, also have 360degree or Virtual tours of at least one of these online.

Specialist Support

Organisations such as IntoUniversity can support young people from disadvantaged backgrounds to attain either a university place or another chosen aspiration whether that is through academic support or through activities which offer learning experiences aiming to immerse young people in a single topic or subject area. IntoUniversity also run a Buddy Scheme where groups of secondary students work with university student volunteers to engage in hands-on activities focussing on a specific discipline for a full day at a university. We’ve details on Careersnearhere:

UCAS Higher Education Exhibition

The UCAS Higher Education Exhibition 2017 is being held in April at the University of Bath Sports Training Village. Designed for those thinking about their options after-A level, it’s a great way to meet over 300 providers from across the UK at their stands, united in their aim to inform you about your choices. Schools usually arrange day trips to the event and without doubt, this is a fantastic way to take a look at the different Unis you might be considering.

Careers Events in School

Your school or college will no doubt also hold at least one careers event during the year. This could be an assembly talk or careers fair where the Unis can explain more about their courses and facilities. Churchill Sixth Form, for example, are holding a free Open Event on creative subjects where department staff from the universities and colleges will be talking about their creative courses. Alternatively, there might be a Parents’ Evening where staff and visiting Unis explain about applying to higher education, student finance and accommodation. All of these are great ways to meet some of the Unis to ask questions and find out more about what they have to offer. It’s Your Future – Let’s Get It Started. Please always feel free to Share with parents/carers, teachers and 16-21s. Post Likes appreciated. Facebook Page Likes adored.