Deciding which university to go to and what to study is a big decision. If your child is currently researching campuses and courses then it’s natural to want to do as much as you can to help them.
But it’s important to approach helping your child in the right way – you don’t want to risk making the decision for them or steering them towards the wrong thing. Here are 6 ways to help your child find the best university courses for them.
1. Be positive and constructive
One of the best things you can do is be positive and constructive. Trying to find the best university courses can be quite a stressful process and your child will need your support, even if they don’t admit it. You might not agree with everything they say, but try to avoid being negative and instead offer constructive advice.
2. Don’t give advice based on your own experience
When you’re discussing university courses with your child, try to avoid giving them advice based on your experience. That’s not to say that your experiences don’t matter or that you haven’t got anything helpful to say. But you need to remember that education and the jobs market are always changing, and what suited you may not suit your child.
3. Be patient if they change their mind
University is a big financial investment and will have a major effect on your child’s future. So it can be pretty alarming and frustrating if your child is changing their mind about where to go and what to study every 5 minutes. But try to be patient. Remember that making life-changing decisions at any time in your life can be tough, let alone when you’re young and have limited life experience.
If you want to help, encourage them to make a list of their future goals and aspirations, or what they’re looking for in a university. Anything you can do to help them to consider what they want calmly and methodically will get your child one step closer to picking the best university course for them.
4. Help them research
It’s important for your child to make key decisions themselves, and researching can help them do this.
It’s important for your child to make key decisions themselves, and researching can help them do this. So when it comes to comparing courses and campuses, it might be best to leave this to them.
However, there are lots of things that you can do to help them on the way. Order prospectuses for the universities that you both think are worth looking at or help them keep a record of which courses ask for which grades. You can also help them to shortlist their options by talking it through with them – this can help them to work out what is most important to them.
5. Encourage them to look into careers
If your child has one or a couple of careers in mind, this can make finding the best university courses for them a lot easier. But it’s important not to assume that certain qualifications will get them the job they want. Employer requirements are constantly changing, so encourage your child to do some thorough career research before they settle on a course.
6. Be upfront about how you can support them
Doubtless you’ll want to support your child while they’re at university. But there are lots of ways of doing this. It might be helping them out financially, driving to pick them up at the end of term or simply giving them a call once a week.
Be upfront with your child about the kind of support you can give them. This way they’ll know what they can rely on you for and what they’ll need to do for themselves.
It can be hard to know how best to help your child when they’re searching for Higher Education courses. But doing these 6 things should help you give your child a hand with finding the best university courses for them.