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University research for care leavers

University research for care leaversFind out what to think about when you're choosing a university, and how to find out the things you need to know.

Entry requirements

You can start narrowing down your choice by comparing entry requirements. Comparison sites like Which? University let you find courses that match up with your qualifications. However, some universities may have flexible entry requirements if your education has been disrupted, so if there is a course you are particularly interested in it's worth getting in touch with the university even if you don't quite have the expected grades.

Course and teaching

League tables are a good place to start comparing different courses, as they will give you a quick idea of how well a particular subject is taught at different universities. However, they don't tell the whole story, so make sure you research the details of individual courses to make sure they will suit you. You should be able to find this information on the university website.

Find out more about how to use league tables effectively.

Other facilities and opportunities

Universities have lots to offer other than the course you study. Things like sports centres, theatres and other extra facilities might be especially important to you if you have a specific interest, but even if you don't, they are worth looking at once you have a shortlist of universities. You should be able to find out about these on the universities' websites.

Location, city and social life

If you're planning on moving away to go to university, then it's important to think about the place you'll be moving to. This means thinking about basic things like campus or city universities, but you should also compare universities in more detail. University guides like Push are a great place to start, but there's no substitute for visiting the university so that you can really get a feel for it. Try to go to an open day, and plan before you go for how to make the most of it.


You can find out about support specifically for care leavers using Propel. This will tell you about things like year-round accommodation, extra funding, and general help and support. You'll also be able to find out who to contact at the university to find out more.

It's also worth looking at the university website to check for things like bursary programmes and counselling services.

Your future

The uni you choose could affect you for much longer than three years. Find out how your course choice could affect your career and your future.