A Parent's Guide to Open Days
Visiting university Open Days can really help your son or daughter (and you) get a sense on whether a particular university, as well their chosen course, are right for them.
What happens at an Open Day?
Each university will have a different list of activities, but essentially Open Days allow you to get onto the university campus to take a look and get your questions answered. Most Open Days will provide opportunities to:
- go on a campus or accommodation tour
- speak to subject tutors for more detail on particular courses
- find out about financial and other support
- discover what extra-curricular activities are available.
For a comprehensive run-down, check out our A-Z of Open Days.
What uni? What campus?
Many universities – including ours – are based across several campuses (sites). These might all be in one city, or spread out further afield. Often particular subjects are taught only at one specific campus.
So, in our case, although we’re the University of Wolverhampton – and our registered address is in the heart of central Wolverhampton – we also have other teaching sites. For instance, our Walsall Campus is where our sport and teaching courses are based. At Telford Campus you’ll find our engineering expertise. Then there are some popular courses – like nursing – that, due to high demand and to enable quality access – are taught at several sites, so you might be closer “to uni” than you think.
Sometimes only a main site will be open for an Open Day, with representation from other subjects/sites – so make sure you check where you should be going before you head out.
Should I attend Open Day with my child?
It’s up to you! If your son or daughter are independent and confident enough to go alone, you may want them to take this step by themselves – especially as they’re the ones who’ll be studying and/or living there.
However, if you’re in the early stages of researching university as an option, or your son or daughter want your help, we welcome everyone to our Open Days.
In many cases, you’ll be driving your son or daughter to the Open Day, so in this case, why don’t you register together, then arrange to meet later? They can explore the campus and go to subject-specific talks, while you can familiarise yourself with the local area.
Before you go
However you’re getting to campus, it’s worth checking out the travel arrangements – whether that’s the closest parking, paying for a train ticket, or the route from the bus station.
How else can I help?
We have all types of potential students coming to our Open Days: the ones who have researched everything and know exactly where they’re going, at what time, and what questions they need answering… and the ones who have walked in and don’t know what to do next.
In either case, our teams on the welcome desks will point you in the right direction. If you’re worried your son or daughter might be overwhelmed or distracted, why don’t you write down a list of things you need answers to and take that with you?
You can also make a plan for what you need to achieve from the day, and if necessary, share the tasks: while your son or daughter are in a subject talk, perhaps you can go on a campus tour?
Take time to breathe
You may feel that you need to cram everything in on an Open Day – but make sure you keep fuelled. So take a moment to grab a bite to eat or drink. It will give you chance to assess where you are. You can tick off your literal, or metaphorical ‘to-do’ list, as well as do some people watching! If it’s sunny, imagine what it might be like in the rain, if a gale’s blowing – imagine how lovely it’ll be in summer! Sit and have a think about how your son or daughter will fit in the scene and give your weary feet a rest.
Got more questions?
Don’t worry if you can’t fit everything in – you can always return for a second visit. Or, when you’ve got home and suddenly realise you didn’t ask that essential question, that’s no problem, just contact us.
Tel: 0800 953 3222
For more information please contact the Corporate Communications Team.