What to ask on Open Day

Make sure you take full advantage of open days by having your questions ready in advance

 

Open days were seriously disrupted last year as a result of the pandemic. Third-level institutions were forced to invest heavily in virtual platforms to give prospective students a taste from afar of the lifestyle and study opportunities on offer.

Now that students are back in college open days are back and many institutions are offering a combined mix of virtual open days and in-person events. Regardless of which you opt for, your questions are likely to be the same for both.

If you are planning on going to third-level there are a lot of factors to consider before you make a decision. You should tailor your questions to suit your own specific interests and needs but as a rule of thumb, it is a good idea to ask the same questions during each open day visit to get as measured an understanding of each institution as is possible. Take note of the answers, take your time and don’t be afraid to go back with any questions you have - even after the event has ended. The following is a list of suggested questions that you might want to consider.

About the course

What areas does the course cover?

How is the course delivered - will some/all of it be online?

How is the course assessed?

How many hours a week will be required on campus?

What are the entry requirements?

Will there be an element of continuous assesment?

Will I be assessed at the end of each semester?

How big will the lectures be?

Will there be opportunities with one-on-one time with tutors?

Is studying abroad an option?

About your career prospects

How will the course make me more employable?

How have previous students performed after graduation?

Do you track students after they leave?

What information do you have on that?

Do many students continue their studies following graduation?

Tell me about the guidance counselling service.

About the college

What facilities do you have on campus?

What are the library opening hours?

What sporting facilities does the college have - is there a pool?

What types of resources are available for students with disabilities?

How accessible is the college - is it wheelchair-friendly?

How diverse is the campus?

About accommodation

What are my university accommodation options?

What is the cost of campus accommodation?

What are the application dates?

Does the students union have a list of approved private landlords?

Does the college offer specific advice to students about accommodation?

About costs

Does the college provide financial aid?

Does it offer scholarships?

What are the relevant requirements/deadlines?

Does the college have a full list of grants/bursaries that are available?

Who do I talk to about financial problems/issues

Student supports

What kind of student supports are available?

Who can I talk to about student counselling?

Does college have a health centre?

Where is the students’ union located?

Is there a list of societies I can look at?