University myth busting
Whether it’s the media cross-examining the value of higher education, or TV shows portraying student life as one big party, there are plenty of myths surrounding the modern day university experience. So, it’s only natural that if your child is considering going to uni, you might have a few questions or concerns. We're here to dispel the rumours and help put your mind at ease.
1. 'My child will need lots of money to get them through university'
When it comes to applying to uni, money matters are one of the biggest concerns amongst parents and students alike. However, you don't need to single-handedly support your child's student lifestyle, as Student Finance are on hand to provide loans for tuition fees and living costs. Going to university can be a budgeting baptism by fire, but if your child is willing to get a part time job to top up their bank balance, they're sure to make their pennies go further.
2. 'The cost of university will leave my child in debt'
With recent headlines about rising tuition fees and increasing living expenses, it’s easy to see why some might feel apprehensive about the cost. In practical terms however, the price tag is less about the total sum, and more about how much your child will actually repay. As an example, if a graduate is earning £27,000 a year, they only repay £38.25 of their loan a month, making it less of a deduction from their monthly wage than tax or national insurance. Repayments stop if the graduate stops earning, and after 30 years any remaining balance is wiped. Simple as that. Looking for more information? We've put together a parents' guide to student finance for anyone looking to swot up.
Parent and guardian guide to university
Find out all you need to know to understand the ins and outs of university for your child.
3. 'My child can't go to university because they aren't studying A Levels'
Most universities now accept a range of level 3 qualifications as part of their formal entry requirements - including A Levels, BTECs, International Baccalaureate (IB), Scottish Highers and the Welsh Baccalaureate - making it more widely accessible to students with a range of academic experiences. There may also be GCSE (level 2) stipulations, so do check all the requirements and contact the university if you are still unsure. You can find entry requirements for each of our courses on our course pages or through the course search function on UCAS.
4. 'Some university students are never there!'
Timetables will vary from course to course, and some will have more 'free time' than others, but the reality is that university study is far more student-led than at school or college. Typically, each week will hold a certain number of lectures and seminars, and around that students are expected to conduct independent study and complete assignments. Taking responsibility of their workload and learning to manage their time is a valuable skill for your child to take forward into their career, so don't panic, they're not wasting their time (at least, not always).
5.'Won't my child struggle to get a job when they graduate?'
While it's true the job market is as competitive as ever, it's proven that having a degree can help give you a leg up with securing your first grown-up job. Studying at university provides tonnes of transferable skills, and more often than not, students are gaining real world experience from live projects and placements before they even graduate; an employer's dream! Not only that, but we've got plenty of support on offer, with our Employability Team to help students turn their passion into a career. We're also pretty proud to say that 97% of our students were in employment or further study within six months of graduating (Destination of Leavers from HE survey 2016/17), which makes our graduates the most employable students in Birmingham!