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    Hello, everyone! After driving both my parents and my tutors up the wall, I decided it'd probably be best to come here and see if any of you amazing people might be able to help prod me in the right direction! In short, I'm torn between two completely different courses, and am not entirely sure which path to follow.

    • To start with a bit of context, back in GCSE, I initially thought I'd be doing Computer Science at University. I spent hours toiling over my laptop, looking up different topics; isolated in my room, with a borderline obsessive love-hate relationship with the internet (which, arguably, has never really changed all that much).
    • Luckily, just prior to A-Level, I began to realise that, just because I spend a lot of time on a laptop and/or playing games, doesn't mean I'd want to work in those fields forever. I became more sociable with others, and perhaps a tad idealistic, changing my mind to more social subjects as A-Level Choices. At this point, I'd had the plan in my head that I was going to do "Social Anthropology", and nothing was ever going to change my mind.
    • Shortly after then, I began to consider Scandinavian Studies (I've always had a rather bizarre fixation with the Scandinavian countries, and I've never particularly been able to explain why); based mostly on the fact that I hope to emigrate to Scandinavia in the future. I took up part of a French GCSE alongside the A-Levels to meet the requirements.
    • Upon fears that, similarly, Scandinavian Studies doesn't offer a direct job link, and unable to keep up with the workload of an added French GCSE, I dropped the French before completion went for a degree revolved around the job I eventually hope to acquire: Youth Work.
    • One UCAS Application later, having applied five options in Youth Work, I make a monumental mistake and drop everything for Social Work substitution. Partially this was due to being a similar course, partially because it came from higher-rated universities (I'm hugely into my league table rankings - I take rankings from The Times, The Complete University Guide and The Guardian before working out averages and ranking them in order; one with The Guardian ranking, and one without, as The Guardian tends to measure noticeably different factors than the other two ranking systems, tending to focus primarily on student satisfaction over achievement), partially because it was subsidized, primarily due to doubts that my UK Youth Work degree would be of any use abroad (as others I had discussed with online on the matter had, infact, recommended Social Work as a more favourable degree).
    • One rejection later, after more consideration, I go for Applied Social Sciences via Extra, and have received an offer. However, as you can probably tell, I now believe even that course wouldn't be helpful - it's too generic when I already know the field I wish to get a job in, and even the Youth Work had at least an NYA/JNC qualification attached to it, required to be a professional Youth Worker in the UK. Having no such nationally certified qualification itself, I began to question the worth of going ahead with the course. Albeit, having learnt from past mistakes, I have kept the course with possible intentions of deferring.


    It was a week or two age that I confided to my tutor that I'd gone back to Youth Work (as, ultimately, I would like to get a job in Youth Work); but just recently I've been reconsidering Scandinavian Studies again, combined with Politics (of which I also have a genuine interest in), in the belief that it would probably be the most helpful degree to get a job abroad (and that I could get a Youth Work college degree whilst abroad that would be more suited to that country, rather than University degree which may not be of the greatest use).

    So, I guess my question to everyone here is, do I take a gap year, gain a language GCSE and take a Scandinavian Studies course, so that I'm in an advantaged position in being able to get into the country (having learnt the language, culture, gained connections from a placement in the country and having access to a university which would presumably have some experience of the country's job opportunities)?
    Alternatively, do I take a gap year to get further Youth Work experience (alongside trying to learn the language recreationally), get a Youth Work degree, work here professionally temporarily (whilst continuing to learn the language, and earning/saving money), and then (possibly after passing language proficiency exams) apply for a job abroad independently, using the money built up as a safety net of sorts?
    Otherwise, should I just stick with what I've got and see where that takes me, to avoid being such an indecisive burden on everyone? :rolleyes:
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    Well if you wanted to move elsewhere and potentially gain a youth work degree there would it not make more sense to try and get a youth work gap year there (lots of countries look for foreign au pairs and the like) and then do language classes alongside that. Within a year you could be pretty much fluent if you practiced enough. Then you'll know if you'd like to live there. If so apply straight to unis there and if not apply over here. What's the point in getting into tens of thousands more debt than you have to?


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    (Original post by Happy_Holidays)
    Well if you wanted to move elsewhere and potentially gain a youth work degree there would it not make more sense to try and get a youth work gap year there (lots of countries look for foreign au pairs and the like) and then do language classes alongside that. Within a year you could be pretty much fluent if you practiced enough. Then you'll know if you'd like to live there.
    Thanks. That is always an idea too, and I have been looking into the European Voluntary Service for volunteering in Norway during my year off, which comes with free language classes alongside the experience of living in the country. For some reason I think I eventually dismissed the idea, and I'm not entirely sure why - so that might be an option worth revisiting. Thank you.

    (Original post by Happy_Holidays)
    If so apply straight to unis there and if not apply over here. What's the point in getting into tens of thousands more debt than you have to?
    Just to clarify, I'd probably end up applying to Universities over here either way, to be honest, due to the expense of a non-citizen going to university there (the cost of University admission in Norway is free, as long as you have £30,000 saved up already for the cost of living ).

    I think my main worry with doing that is that I'll probably need a back-up fund (so that I can survive as a resident in Norway whilst applying for jobs through the NAV), as well as having to go through the whole process of gaining a work permit semi-independently. Additionally, to prove I'm sufficiently skilled in Norwegian I would need to pass a Bergenstest.

    Albeit, I do agree, there is little point getting in tens of thousands of debt if there's no point - I think part of it's also out of fear that, if I don't have a degree in anything, I'd struggle to compete in the job market (particularly with many Norwegians having trained up to a postgraduate level).
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    You sound really confused about what you want to do in life!

    My advice is to take some time out rather than ending up doing a degree course you arent sure you even want to do. You dont *have* to go to Uni this year. So dont feel you have to rush into making a panic decision you might well regret.

    Cancel your entire UCAS application for this year. Travel, get away from the whole 'A level/Uni' craziness, and do some calm, clear headed thinking. Only when you are really certain about what really interests you, look at Uni courses again and think about if you even want to go to Uni and if so what/where.
 
 
 
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