There are all sorts of myths and misconceptions about higher education in the UK, from those that are on specific institutions to others which relate to the university experience as a whole.
Here we take a look at some of the most popular myths about the university experience and try to work out whether they are true or false.
You’ll need lots of money to survive university
FALSE Yes, we all know that university can be expensive. On top of tuition fees, you have accommodation and all sorts of other living costs to consider. It’s not all doom and gloom though. The good news is the Welsh Government believes money shouldn’t be a barrier to going to university, so it recently launched a new student support package for students starting a first-time undergraduate course in 2018/19. The package, which is the most generous in the UK, means you could be eligible for up to £11,250 in grants and loans to help with living costs. For more information read our blog on student finance.
Your first year doesn’t count
FALSE This has to be one of the biggest misconceptions that exists about university life. Yes, it’s true that on most courses your first-year marks don’t count towards your final grade, but it is really important to remember that you still have to pass that all important first year. This means that skipping lectures and seminars, not handing in assignments on time and failing to do all the required reading is simply not an option. Your first year will also give you the foundation for the rest of your degree, so it is really important that you make a good start. Read our blog from Cardiff University History graduate Christian to get his top tips for starting at university.
Going to university is just an excuse for constant clubbing/partying/drinking
FALSE Many people believe that university life is just a constant stream of pubs, clubs and parties, occasionally interrupted by short bouts of study. It’s true that university life does offer a much greater degree of freedom than you’ll currently have, particularly if you move away from home, but it’s not all about the social life! The truth is, while there’s plenty of fun to be had at university you don’t have to do any of these things if you don’t want to. In fact, a recent survey by the University of Cambridge found that 30 per cent of students do not drink alcohol at all. The important thing is to get the balance right. Yes, have fun but you’ll soon find that if you do spend all your time partying and drinking, you probably won’t get very far on your course.
More information and resources
For more myths about the university experience busted, check out these pieces: