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What should I be doing this month?


What to think about this month - January 2015

In this month's newsletter we discuss the future - oohh, aahh...

As your New Years resolutions slowly start to become non-existent, Push is here to make you feel practically virtuous by providing you with some things you can do right now to shape your future for the better. Without getting too sweaty... Or hungry.

If you're in year 12

If you're in year 13

In the news

If you're in Year 12

Okay, so you've got nearly a year until your UCAS deadline. But if you're smart, you'll want to get your application at the front of the queue, which means getting it in sometime after the applications for 2016 open in the summer, but well before  next Christmas. Still think you've got all the time in the world? Just think about all the lessons, summer exams, Saturday jobs, parties, holidays and procrastination that you've got to fit in. A year's gone like that.

Researching uni options can be a lot of legwork, but the Push Uni Chooser is here to save your shoe-leather. Just whack in the subjects you're interested in studying, then follow the step-by-step process to track down which unis might be best for you. Whether you're making a short-list or just playing around, it is time well spent.

If you're still not sure whether you'd like to study History, Politics or Agriculture with Dairy Herd Management, then it's worth taking a sneak peek at bestCourse4me. It'll tell you what courses are needed for what careers. Or you could do it in reverse and see what prospects your favourite subject will offer you after university.

The earlier you do your research, the easier it'll be when it comes to crunch time.

If you're in Year 13

The UCAS deadline has now passed. Hopefully you can breathe a sigh of relief, sound in the knowledge that yours was submitted ages ago (breathe out). If that's the case, here's some of the lingo that will be heading your way in the next few months. There are four possible responses:
  • An unconditional offer: This means they'll take you no matter what. You can do no wrong. Being realistic - with the exception of a few unis - this is pretty unlikely, unless you've already got your grades.
  • A conditional offer: This means they'll take you if you meet their 'conditions'. Which usually means getting the right grades at A Level (or whatever qualifications you're doing). They might say what grade you need in what subject and there might be other conditions like language tests, for instance.
  • A rejection: Don't take it personally. The greatest revenge is a life well lived.
  • Maybe, but first... They might want to invite you for an interview or some kind of assessment. This isn't that common and it tends to be only the more traditional universities or certain courses that require interviews.
For more help with offers, take a look at our guide, here.

If you missed the boat for any reason and still want to apply, you can. However it'll mean your application will be marked as late, meaning that universities don't have to bother with it. It's worth making excuses in your personal statement if they're worth hearing. Or, you could just wait till next year and get your application in early.

AARRRGGGHH EXPENSIVE!!!

Yes we know, uni is expensive. Very expensive. But all is not lost. Take a look at our new article for top tips on getting your head around everything student finance. If you've been scratching your head wondering exactly what you're going to end up spending all your money on, we've got the answer for you in our dosh drains section. Has all this talk about money got you in a flap? Why don't you start planning your budget with the help of the Student Money Calculator.

In the news

A degree: a license to l-earn.

If you're still unsure of whether or not you want to go to uni, Push has something for you to consider. The Government has recently reported that people with a degree earn, on average, £9,000 a year more, than those who have gone directly into employment. That works out at an average graduate salary of £31,000 compared with a salary of £22,000 for employed school leavers. 

While that’s all well and good, graduates have to get that graduate job in the first place. That appears to be easier said than done. 

To improve your chances of getting a uni place and set yourself up for the future, you may want to take a look at what the Sutton Trust's summer school has to offer.


£16,000... A pound of flesh... Potato, po-tah-to. The saga continues.

Push reported last month that Oxbridge are considering charging £16,000 for their undergraduate courses (click here for the full story), but recent statistics have shown that paying the extra might be worth it in the long run. According to the Sutton Trust, a degree from either Oxford or Cambridge generally guarantees graduates £7,600 more on their starting salary than graduates from all other universities on average. It can't be proved though, whether it's going to Oxbridge that adds the extra value, or whether Oxbridge is just picking high-fliers anyway. A whole basket of chickens and egg and who knows which comes first.

Dial 0 for Careers Advice?

The fact you're reading this, mean you're probably facing some kind of careers decision at the minute – whether to go to university or maybe get a job, what to study at uni, or what to do afterwards — you have some choices to make and they’re all equally important. So what say you to new information that says 83% of schools do not employ a professional careers adviser, instead leaving the task to the likes of receptionists and teaching assistants? Unacceptable, we hear you say? We think so too. So don’t let it lie, get your teacher on the case here.

Last updated on: 21 January 2015

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