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How to Improve Your Chances of Getting into the Top Universities

Getting into any university can be tough. But getting into the top universities are tougher because there is so much more competition. So, how do you improve your chances of getting into a more prestigious university? In essence, you have to set yourself apart from the crowds of other applicants. Think “Why do I want to go to this university?”, “How can I add to the university community?” and “Why do they need me?”. Your job is to sell yourself.


Below are some areas to look at when trying to improve your application.


Get High Grades – The first thing universities look at is your grades. You need to get at least the entry requirement for your chosen course, preferably more. Also, if your chosen course requires you to have a certain qualification, such as an A in Maths at A-level, make sure you actually do it. This is where early research comes in handy.


Get Work Experience and Volunteer – Universities know that work experience is hard to get. If you have any, it will look good. The more you have, though, the better. Look into potential jobs in your chosen subject. For example, if you choose to do medicine, then get work experience at a hospice or care home. Hospitals are very busy, so are unlikely to offer any work experience or shadowing opportunities, but you can always try. Gather a list of companies and organisations you would want to work for and start calling asking for unpaid work experience. If any are interested, send them your CV with a short cover letter. You will get a lot of ‘no’s, a few ‘maybes’, and hopefully a ‘Yes’ or two. Also, when writing your personal statement, you should explain what you gained from the experience.


Read Around Your Subject – Knowing as much as you can about your chosen subject is never a bad thing. It shows you are passionate about your subject and enjoy learning more about it and it’ll tell the admissions team that you are an independent learner. After all, that is exactly what universities want from their students.


Submit Your Application as Early as Possible – Generally, early applicants get priority. Offers usually come on a first come first serve basis, so the earlier you submit your application, the more likely you are to receive an offer.


Attend Taster Sessions and Do Extra-Curricular Activities – Many universities offer taster sessions in certain subjects. It will be a good idea to attend a few in your chosen subject. Not only will it give you a better idea of what university is like, but it will also show the universities that you know what university is like and still want to go. Therefore, you’re less likely to drop out after a year or so. You also have to demonstrate that you do more than just go to class. Extra-curricular activities are important and if you do any, even if it’s only one or two, let the university know about it. Tell them what you gain or gained from it.


Contact the Admissions Office of Your Chosen University and Ask What They Look For – Don’t be shy when contacting universities. You can never ask too many questions and some universities will appreciate someone who has called and wants to know how they can improve their chances of getting an offer. It tells the universities that you are passionate and enthusiastic. Not only will you know what you can do, but the universities know about you too.


So, there are six tips on improving your chances of getting an offer to a university. Good luck in your university application and remember to sell yourself. If you don’t who else will?


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