The Internet garnishes a beautiful platter of information about universities around the world, and the courses they offer. Everything in the spread is so tempting, that the prospective students are lost, when it comes to choosing one. All kinds of students (ones who want to do everything, and the ones who are excited by nothing!) struggle to choose their college list and finalise one course they want to pursue, or the one university they want to study in. It’s not your fault, choosing your college list is hard, but you could definitely use this blog for it.
However, choosing your college list does become easy because of the number of consultancies that have mushroomed around us. But what if you are not consulting anyone to choose your college list? You are exactly the person we are writing this for! Others, feel free to hop along. Anyone can follow this process, and at least get a good start towards picking out the right program, as well as the right colleges.
Internet is good with numbers and comparisons; hence students ought to use it to their advantage. Websites like topuniversities.com and The Guardian prove reliable, when it comes to ranking international universities, and a student can refer to the websites of MHRD and NIRF for the ranking of Indian universities.
The students are next advised to check the program they want to pursue and its curriculum. Different colleges offer a different set of subjects, and one needs to figure out which syllabus offers a better incentive.
The students should then compare the curriculum of different colleges, and decide which of them would best suit their needs. Many times some colleges offer a cross functional syllabus which can prove to be beneficial for honing multiple skills.
After steps 1, 2 and 3, the students should make a list of 10-15 colleges and courses they would like to apply to for their further studies; based on their priorities. These priorities could be your choice of weather, the environment of your college, campus requirements, housing requirements etc. This list will form the base for the rest of the exercise.
The next step would be to look up for the guidelines and admission criteria of these institutions. You need to know the eligibility, the tests you need to take (SAT, IELTS, GRE etc.), the minimum accepted scores, portfolio requirements, the kinds of portfolio needed, and other requisites, if there are any. This step would help you sort out your colleges in a much pragmatic way.
Post this, you should try and reach out to the alumni and the existing students of your desired institutions in order to have a detailed understanding of the course and the institution, the country, city and the standard of living. Remember, the alumni always come in handy for their experience.
At this point, you would have an in-depth view of every little detail about your shortlisted colleges. It is probably the right time to refine. Go through your list again, reshuffle the order in terms of preferences, and repeat the process up to this step if you have to.
An ideal college list – in our opinion – should have 2-3 dream colleges (which are harder to achieve, but you really wish to study there), 3-4 achievable colleges (which are in your reach and still amazing schools to study at), and 4-5 safety colleges (these are for your safety and assurance; you’d get into these for sure!). Make sure you balance optimism and realism, in the process of making this list.
Now, this might scare you a bit, and might also seem like too much work! Truth be told, you do need to have patience, but it is definitely not a lot. Your work out here can help you build your career which is extremely important. So put in the effort now, and live your dream! For any further counseling you can always get in touch with our team at ULA.