Applicant days: what you can expect

Once you’ve made your way through the confusing business of choosing universities to apply for and writing a personal statement, you might be invited to an applicant or offer holder day. But these will differ a little bit from the open days you went to back when you were deciding on where to apply. So, let me guide you through what to expect.


It will be more course-specific

Although you might have had a chance to chat with a lecturer on the course you were thinking of applying to, open days tend to be more focused on the university itself, including things like accommodation and facilities. Whereas on an applicant day, you are normally grouped with people who have applied to the same or similar courses and will get a taste of what studying the course will be like.

There may be lectures or seminars

As they will be trying to give you a little snapshot of what studying will be like, there may be a lecture or a group activity that is related to your course. Don’t worry, you won’t need to study (unless they tell you otherwise), and it will probably be very informal and friendly in nature. This is all done to give you an idea of what your course will be like and get you to start thinking about your chosen subject in some depth.

You will get to meet more lecturers and future course mates

There is a good chance you will spend the majority of the day with someone who may be teaching you in September, and you may get to meet a selection of your potential future lecturers. This can be a great chance to start to get to know them and start asking questions about course content or contact hours.

Since you are likely to be grouped by course, you will also have a chance to meet the people who may end up being your course mates. This is a great chance to make friends and find out other people’s opinions about the university and the course. Make sure to add them on social media so you can stay in touch!

There might be an interview

Try not to panic! This isn’t true for all universities or courses, and if you’re going to have an interview, they will warn you. It is likely to be fairly informal and related to your passion and knowledge of the subject you have applied for. If you have an interview, it won’t hurt to brush up on some of the recent news or developments in your subject area and have a good answer prepared for why you want to study your course.

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