Attending a university event is one of the best ways to find out if a course and campus is right for you – this applies to virtual events too. At The University of Law we do all we can to provide you with a genuine insight into what studying with us will be like by making our virtual events as interactive as possible even when you can’t be here in person.
By Cara Fielder. Published 9 September 2020. Last updated 7 April 2021.
To give you some advice on what to look out for and questions to ask, we’ve put together some top tips on how to get the most out of attending a university event virtually.
How to prepare for virtual events
Attending events virtually brings a new set of preparations. Technology doesn’t always work out the way we want it so preparing our devices and connection is key. Make sure you have a decent internet connection and your device is up-to-date with its software. If you’re using a mobile device or tablet, it may be worth buying a stand to keep your camera steady, or practising how to prop your device up for the duration of the virtual event. It may also benefit you to check lighting making sure the light source is always behind the camera rather than in front, and to practise speaking on video to counter any nerves for when it’s your opportunity to ask questions.
Prior to the virtual event, it’s good to do as much research on the University as possible to enable you to shape any questions you may have and focus in on specific parts of the stream. Ask the questions that will determine what university path will work for you. How far from home do I want to study? Do I want to be close to a major city? Do I need certain facilities nearby like a sports pitch or library? Are there certain universities that are specialists in my field of study? What online studying measures are in place in the event of being unable to come to your campus? Answering these questions beforehand will make your virtual experience easier.
How to get the most out of a virtual event
Both undergraduate and postgraduate students are often nervous about leaving home and starting university for a number of reasons; fear of the unknown, living with new people, being self-reliant and missing the daily support of family, friends and even pets.
Virtual events will calm these nerves and give you all the insight you need to make the most of your university career.
As with most virtual events, the chat function will be available. This will usually be in the form of a live chat when staff or current students are walking you through university life. Have questions ready for the accommodation department, student services, finance and disability services if you need to. Always remember that course information questions should be at the top of your list. Read up on your choices before your open day and be ready with course-specific questions. This decision will shape the next few years of your higher education. Try to ask questions that will help you to understand the course structure, assessment methods, modules and course content. It’s important to talk to tutors and academics when attending virtual open days. These people will be your first point of contact from an education perspective and have first-hand knowledge of what your learning will entail.
Remember, don’t be afraid to ask silly questions. The response you get from all questions should be encouraging which shows that it is a supportive environment.
How to stand out at virtual events
It’s a good choice to try to make an impression during virtual events. Universities will want to see that you are engaged and capable of completing your chosen course successfully. The person presenting on the virtual event will encourage questions from the audience, so make sure you ask a few insightful and interesting ones to show you are engaged as a potential student.
Making sure you are presentable is also a good tip for virtual events where webcams will be utilised. Don’t sit in your bed in your pyjamas, make sure you are dressed professionally with no distractions in the background. It also helps to get a friend or family member to double-check there is nothing in the background that could embarrass you, or seem inappropriate to some. Your university career doesn’t start on your first day, it starts from the moment you decide to progress into further education.
Some universities may hold events other than virtual open days such as our popular National Law Fair which aims to connect students with recruitment opportunities. There may also be subject talks related to your chosen degree, career taster events and even case study days. All these additional events can really help you make your mind up about the right place to study and are far easier to attend virtually than in person. A university that offers these extra events, both virtual and physical, alongside their open days shows an interest in the subject and a desire to expand your university career beyond the syllabus.
Each year, AllAboutLaw runs the Virtual Law Fair, which is sponsored by ULaw. This guide to preparing for a virtual law fair has some great advice on how to get ready for events like these.
If you would like to find out more about our virtual events, see our events page.