Information with regards to open days can be found on this page

3 Tips for Making the Most of Open Days

The following article has been adapted from an EduOne article. I highly recommend this website as it is South African-based, user-friendly and covers everything our Gr 11 and 12 learners need to know to assist with preparing for NSC finals, study and career choice, gap years and funding/bursaries.

Website: Eduone

“You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose.”

~ Dr Seuss 

Attending open days can be super informative and helpful. But you need to go prepared to make the best of it. Here are some tips on making the best most of open days at all institutions. 

1. Speak to People

The best part about an open day is being able to speak to as many people as you possibly can. The people at the stands, students currently studying, lecturers and faculty heads. You have the opportunity to gain such incredible insight from people who have experience. You’re there to see what the institution has to offer, not only as an academic institution but to grow you in all spheres of your life.

Some questions you could consider?

  • What is the anticipated work load per day/week?
  • What is the ratio of practical work vs theory?
  • How busy would you be with classes during the day? (Maybe you could squeeze in a student job.)
  • What APS is required?
  • Is the minimum APS a guaranteed acceptance?
  • If you don’t get those points, is there another way for you to gain entrance? Like a bridging course or alternative basic degree?
  • How is the selection based? APS only or do you have submit a portfolio or be interviewed?
  • Are career days held?
  • Will all my courses be on one campus or one area of the campus? Will I be going between campuses and faculties?

2. Take a Friend

Taking a friend or even a parent with you could make it that much more interesting. You would each have different interests and would want to visit different stands. So you’d each be introduced to faculties or courses that you may have never considered before that could just be interesting to you.

Here are some questions to be aware of and to take note of:

  1. What cultural and sporting activities do they offer?
  2. What career guidance is available? Having some guidance can make the transition from university to the working world that much easier.
  3. Go check out the library and see what facilities they offer (like computers, printers, group work areas, etc.).
  4. What is on offer for the general student life? Cafés, bookshops, entertainment nearby, on-campus entertainment? This is the time to have some fun too.
  5. What are the lecture halls like? Where would your proposed faculty be? Go wander around the campus and get a feel for it. Or take a tour.
  6. Get a feel for the general vibe of the campus by walking around. Also, ask about the orientation week and how it would benefit your all-round experience. Last but not least, ask yourself if this is an environment that you can see yourself in for a period of time. Can you cope away from home? Or is it too close to home? This is your life, and your parents will support you as best they can if they can see you have done your research, kept an open mind and explored many different options. If they aren’t too supportive of your first choice, you may need to ask your parents to keep an open mind and allow you to explore alternative options.

Additional Tips

  • Take note of the petrol you use getting to campus and back on the open day. If your plan is to drive in every day it’s important to factor in the petrol costs.
  • Have a look around at the different residences and diggs available to you.
  • If you want to stay there, take note of how far the shops are from where you’d stay and if you’d need a car.
  • Tour the town and imagine yourself living there and settling into the hustle and bustle.
  • Find out about the security on campus and what services they offer.