Higher education exhibitions are a great way to support your students with their next steps, as they’ll find university representatives, apprenticeship information and career support all under one roof.
Whether you’re looking for ideas to prepare your students for your own in-house careers fair, or would like tips on what to expect at a larger scale UCAS, UK Uni Search or WhatUniversity Live event, the following dos and don’ts will equip your students with the right mindset to attend.
✅ Research courses and universities beforehand
With so many options in one room, it can be overwhelming for students to decide which stand to visit first. If they can take some time before the fair to research courses and possible universities or employers that offer these, it can help them narrow down their choices on the day. Careers quizzes can be a great place to start if a student doesn’t know which path to go down – UCAS has an online tool for this, which they also offer at their in-person fairs.
✅ Ask questions about the course
We advise reminding your students that exhibitions are a great chance to ask more in depth questions about the course itself – preparing these can prevent them getting flustered when they’re in front of a stand. From grade boundaries to module choices and extra-curricular opportunities, university representatives will be able to provide all sorts of information that may end up swaying their choices.
✅ Find out what it would be like to live at university
Looking at what a university can offer a student outside of the course content should also be a top priority at exhibitions. The location and layout of the university should be important to students as they’ll be spending 3-5 years in the area. They should ask about first year accommodation choices, as well as the sports and societies on offer.
❌ Collect prospectuses from every stand
Students love freebies and we get it! There’s nothing better than a free pen. However, visiting every stand and filling up bags with every provider’s materials is probably going to be very heavy and give them too many choices when they get home. Researching universities and employers beforehand will help them narrow down their options.
❌ Grab a prospectus and run
Exhibition fairs are a great opportunity to speak to someone who spends the majority of their time in the universities or businesses students are looking at. They’ll be able to provide insider information on what the provider is like, so students should definitely use this to their advantage. Especially if universities have student ambassadors on their stands!
❌ Forget to follow up
Once students have collected information from a fair, it’s important to follow up on this when they get home. University prospectuses will often advertise social media accounts and have links to book open days online - students often say that they get the best view of a higher education option from an in-person visit.
If you would like to find out which fairs Swansea University will be attending, view our higher education events page.