Dad dot info
DAD.info form. Ask questions, get answers
DAD.info | Family | Education | Beyond School | Supporting Your Child at University Open Days

Supporting Your Child at University Open Days

University is an important time that will shape your child’s personality and influence their transition into adulthood. Callum Dawson from The Student Housing Company shares some ideas for supporting your kids in choosing the university that’s right for them… 

The years spent at university are a pivotol time in young people’s lives. In the space of just three or four years, they’ll meet lifelong friends, build connections and get the opportunity to explore a new city. It’s a lot for them to take on, so it’s vital that they make the right decision early on. That’s what open-days are for: your child can learn about the courses they’re interested in and get a feel for the campus and surrounding area.

Your mere presence on the day is a massive help. With the right support, your child will be prepared for what university has to offer. But what constitutes the ‘right support’? It’s important to strike a balance between supportive and overbearing (after all, nobody wants to be a pushy parent). Our tips will help:

1. Provide transport

We’ll start with the practical stuff. If their prospective university is far away, driving your son or daughter there will prepare you for more of the same. Almost every ex-student who lived away for uni remembers the long road-trips with their parents, and it’s a brilliant opportunity to bond. 

With a playlist of their favourite tunes (and maybe one or two of yours), some snacks, and good conversation, what at first seems a laborious task can become a fun journey for the both of you.

If they’re getting the train, accompany them. You can use the journey to reassure your child. They’ll probably be a bit nervous about the (metaphorical) road ahead, so you’ll have plenty of time to calm their nerves.

2. Take notes of your own

In the excitement of the day, your son or daughter might miss certain details here and there, so it’s a good idea to take notes of your own. Afterwards, you can both compare: you might be surprised by what your child picked up on too.

3. Give them space

Again, you don’t want to be too overbearing. Give your child the space to stroll around the campus,  the library, the canteen, or anywhere else they want to check out. 

They need to visualise themselves spending a prolonged amount of time in these spaces, so it’s a good idea to do your own thing for a little while.

4. Seek out parent-based lectures

Many universities will host sessions for parents, where you can go and ask questions about your child’s time at uni. These sessions are prime opportunities for you to learn what you can, and they give your son or daughter the space to explore the campus by themselves.

You can also speak to fellow parents and get their take on the university. Unless you’ve gone to open-days before, this is a first for you too. Make the most of it, and ask questions.

5. What questions should you ask?

You and your child should ask at least a few questions while you’re there, so do a bit of prep beforehand and have your best questions ready. You’ll want to think about tutor contact time, the quality of social life, and any opportunities there are to study abroad. 

Don’t forget about the course, either. Your child needs to know how the course is assessed because they might prefer exams to essays (or vice versa).

Ultimately, this is your child’s choice and all you can do is support them. Your role is to facilitate their decision and ensure that it’s as informed as possible. 

What’s important to them? If it’s a healthy social life, keep an eye out for well-managed student unions, nearby bars, and good places to eat. You’ll want robust security, high-quality tuition, and suitable housing too.

Don’t forget to have fun, either! This is a bonding experience between the two of you, and it will likely set the tone for your relationship over the next few years. Between the homesickness and the deadline stress, your ongoing support will be invaluable.

Callum Dawson is a writer for The Student Housing Company, a provider of high-quality, private student halls in diverse locations across the UK.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Related entries

31 percent of parents don’t read to their children

31 percent of parents don’t read to their children

Are you one of the over 60% of parents who doesn't read newspapers or magazines to their kids We all know that reading is essential for our children’s development. Despite this, a third (31 percent) of us parents do not read with our children and 63% never read...

How playing outside gets kids ready for school

How playing outside gets kids ready for school

For many parents, the milestone of their child starting school in September is tempered by anxiety about whether they are ready for this all-important transition. But what do we mean by 'ready for school'? Despite what we may think, we shouldn't concern ourselves with...

The Value of Sports Coaching For Kids

The Value of Sports Coaching For Kids

If you haven’t got your kids into some out-of-school sport, you may want to give it a go. Whether it is football, boxing,martial arts, dancing, skateboarding or gymnastics, there is a sport for everyone. Mastering a new skill boosts your child's sense of self and...

Latest entries

When is the new highway code out?

When is the new highway code out?

January 29th! Once passed through parliamentary review, the new highway code is out! We are all going to have to take a refresher. Some of the changes to the Highway Code coming in on 29th Jan 2022 We are all responsible when we use the roads. We are obliged to follow...

Fertility: How does miscarriage affect a man?

Fertility: How does miscarriage affect a man?

Psychotherapist Noel McDermott answers a tough question... How does miscarriage affect a man? Here Noel look at how loss is a natural process that needs support. Men won’t get any specific set of feelings and experiences after a miscarriage. Everyone's experience will...

Pin It on Pinterest