YOUNG VOICES

What's The Secret To Getting A Place At Uni?

19/01/2015 09:31 GMT | Updated 21/01/2015 10:59 GMT
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Budding students are now being asked to provide more examples of life experience and extra curricular activities when they are applying for universities to stand out from their fellow competitors.

So how can students who are already high achievers differentiate themselves from other applicants?

Russell Group universities, such as University College London, LSE, the University of Warwick and more, say they are beginning to emphasise the importance of applicants having a wide range of vocational skills and attributes to make them stand out.

The World Challenge Report recently showed that 58.5% of universities now believe it is more important for students to demonstrate experience beyond their academic subjects in their application forms.

The report also featured excerpts from various university admissions tutors who revealed a plethora of different reasons behind selecting students for certain degrees.

Many admissions tutors said that the amount of non-academic knowledge and experience depended on a student's chosen degree subject.

One example is medicine with one admissions tutor saying: "For the caring professions having experience like volunteering will be more relevant than say if you were studying maths. All we are looking for is that A or A* grade."

The trick is to get the right sort of work experience in their chosen degree's field and voluntary work. A schools advisor said: "Now it seems they want much more rounded individuals. They expect students to have had a lot of work experience."

The advisor added: "Students with lots of voluntary experience have an edge over those who have little or none, because they have a wider breadth of transferrable skills that are applicable to both the degree course and a future career in that field."

This development has been met with a mixed reaction from students as there is a word limit on their personal statements.

One said: "I feel I didn’t get across as much as I wanted to in my personal statement so I ended up grouping things together.

We've rounded up the qualities universities now expect from students who are thinking of applying.. Good luck!