How to choose your Bachelor degree: a guide for prospective students
Choosing an undergraduate programme can be a difficult task. Here we would like to provide several important factors you should consider when choosing the one that suits you.
1) A respected and reputable institution. Even if the program and offered courses look cool, make sure to check the university rankings! The employer will definitely consider top -ranked schools and universities first when interviewing the candidate. You might want to double check the school or university delivering your future degree is ranked highly in established league tables, and is renowned in your chosen area of study. But be aware that even the most prestigious universities have strong and weak areas of specialisation, so make sure that the school or university you have in mind in reputed in the field in which you want to study.
2) You will be joining an alumni network after you graduate! For young high-school graduates, a three or four year degree can sound like an eternity. But the school or university you will join for your Bachelor degree will stay with you for life! When choosing a university consider the spread of its alumni network. What are alumni doing 10, 20, even 30 years after they graduated? Are they in top managerial positions, leading multinational companies? Not all alumni networks are the same. If you join a small or medium-sized institution, the alumni network tends to be more efficient as the sense of community and belonging is often stronger.
3) Will the course you study prepare you well for your future business career? Companies these days are expecting recent grads not only to be academically knowledgeable but adaptable and immediately operational. They expect you to be able to grasp the complexity of the business world, and to be able to adapt to changes within the company, understand and incorporate new tech advances, etc. When choosing the program, ask yourself the following questions. How if your future Bachelor’s degree going to help you prepare for your future career? Can you do an internship program as part of the course which will enable you to secure a job after graduation? These factors can make a real difference for your future career.
4) Don’t choose too «narrow' programs. Some subjects can sound cool, but studying a really specific and narrow topic during 3 or 4 years of a BA course will limit your employment opportunities. Employers are increasingly concerned when they see a lack of relevance between a graduate's qualifications and the jobs for which they apply. So before choosing the program do some research on how companies look at your degree before starting one!
5) Any international life? Learning is greatly influences by multicultural settings and international experiences. Joining an international university will not only mean friends for life from all around the world, but also more reflection on the meaning of what you learn, new perspectives and points of view. You can check how many international student study on campus and are there any opportunities to spend a semester abroad. These experiences will greatly enhance your capacity to adapt to different contexts.
6) What is your learning environment? Students often underestimate the importance of looking at the teaching style of different institutions. Some universities and schools are have a proven record of research work, others are focusing on coursework and classroom teaching. Many high-school students experience a cultural shock when starting university. Some of you are used to small classrooms, others will feel better in large, 300+ students auditoriums, mixing with lots of students from other groups and courses. Feeling not left alone for some students is a blessing, while for others who tend to work independently this is a disaster. Make sure you understand the type of teaching environment you will be joining!
Of course, choosing an undergraduate/Bachelor programme also includes a series of more personal choices, such as studying in an attractive and cosmopolitan city, or being offered a scholarship. At the end of the day, a good choice is one that combines rational and personal elements. But remember that a well-chosen undergraduate degree could well be the best investment you will ever make!