What is an HE convention and what's it like?
Most HE conventions take place in large venues like arenas and are a bit like an indoor market. Each university has it's own "stall" where you can collect prospectuses and ask the people staffing the stall questions. Some stalls only have students who will be able to answer generic questions, some will have admissions tutors who you can ask for more academic advice, and some will have both.
There may also be short lectures presented by certain universities about specific courses are giving general advice such as how to decide which course to take, etc. You may have to acquire a ticket for these at the front desk. There will probably also be some larger stalls run by people from organisations like Connexions and UCAS Card.
Where can I find a convention near me?
Most conventions are run by UCAS. See here.
How do I get the most out of an HE Convention?
- If the arena is large, pick up a leaflet - it will usually tell you which university's stall is located where.
- If you haven't already narrowed down your choices, pick up as many prospectuses as you can carry. It's probably best to be systematic e.g. row-by-row.
- Stands like those run by Connexions are good if you need free pens, plastic bags, yo-yos and suchlike.
- Don't take a heavy backpack full of books: you'll have enough to carry as it is.
- Obviously, check out the venue's website if you'll be needing parking, and don't bank on there being any catering. Especially not if you want good, reasonably priced catering.
- Don't expect to be there all day. If there aren't any talks you're interested in and you're pretty quick, you can be in and out in half an hour.
- Don't expect every university in the country to be there, don't expect them all to have tutors there, and even if they do have tutors you may well have to fight through some crowds to get to them.