If your child decides university is the right path for them, there’s still a lot of research to do, with approximately 35,000 undergraduate courses to choose from.

Step 1. Online research

  • Use the UCAS search tool to find and shortlist undergraduate courses at universities, colleges, and conservatoires (collectively referred to as course providers). Each search result lists a summary of the course, how and when to apply, fees and finances associated with the course, and information on the entry requirements the course provider is looking for.
  • Get your child to register for their UCAS Hub to start exploring their options, favouriting subjects, and using our handy tools – all in one place.
  • From their Hub your child can also access subject spotlights, which give them a chance to try a university course before applying. Delivered by the lecturers themselves, students can gain insight into what it’s like to study the course and give their personal statement a boost. 
  • Point them to online step-by-step guidance to choosing a course, which covers choosing a subject, the right type of degree, how to study, and where to study.
  • Take a look at university, college, or conservatoire websites for in-depth details about their facilities and courses, and explore the campus with their virtual tours.
  • Chat to current undergraduates to ask questions and gain valuable insight into what life at uni is really like.

Step 2. Attend UCAS Discovery events and open days

  • University and college open days give you the chance to look around, meet staff and students, and see if your child would be happy living and studying there. They’re great for giving you peace of mind that wherever they end up studying, you know they will be in a familiar place they’re comfortable with. Use the open days search tool to find out when the university they’re interested in is holding its next open day.
  • Taster courses are tailored to specific courses or subjects, and often include lectures and hands-on workshops to give your child a feel for what it would be like to study that particular course. 

UCAS Discovery events

UCAS Discovery events are a chance to meet hundreds of unis, colleges, and employers, and chat face-to-face with current students and apprentices – all in one place.

There are also live Q&A talks with subject and industry experts, and a chance to get the latest advice and info on applications and career choices to help narrow down their options.

Step 3. Get informed

Entry requirements

  • It’s really important your child understands the entry requirements for courses they’re interested in, so they can make fully informed choices about courses that are right for them. They're set by course providers, as a guideline of the academic ability students need, and are usually a mix of qualifications, subjects, and/or exam grades.
  • To help students make informed decisions about their future when narrowing down their application choices, course details pages in our search tool show profiles of students accepted onto courses, alongside offer rates. Find out more about entry grades data
  • Some uni and college entry requirements will be based on Tariff points. The UCAS Tariff is used by universities and colleges to make broad comparisons between qualifications used for entry to higher education. Tariff points are allocated to a wide range of qualifications, and can be added together (within certain rules) to give an overall Tariff score.