Frequently Asked Questions
You can choose a course from a wide variety of subjects, including Sciences, Social Sciences and Humanities, alongside vocational courses like Medicine, Veterinary Medicine, Nursing, Midwifery and Physiotherapy, through the numerous participating universities. Courses range from voice and drama, to medicine and nursing, to computing and business.
Use the Taster course search to find available taster courses.
The taster courses take place at various times throughout the year; some happen in the autumn term, though most are run between February and July.
They can be as short as 2 hours, are often a half or whole day, and in some cases run over several (non-residential) days.
The process is simple. Find and apply for a course which interests you. Once your place has been confirmed, simply come along on the day to attend what might be a sample lecture, a seminar, a group discussion, or other activity.
Each participating university will run their taster courses slightly differently, but all are welcoming and relaxed.
Most courses involve no preparation. The university hosting the course want all their taster course participants to feel comfortable, relaxed and enjoy their day. They also want to showcase some of the interesting research that happens in university, perhaps show you a new light on a subject you thought you knew, and demonstrated the different ways universities teach.
University lecturers and staff will run the course. Other participants will be other students from schools and colleges, largely year 12 though some courses are open to years 10, 11 and 13. This will be clear on the page for each course.
- Taster courses are a great way to try out university without committing yourself to anything.
- They’re also an excellent way to test out new subject areas, or see how a favourite subject might be at degree level.
- Taster courses can be a way to think about future career plans.
- You can use a course to check if a subject you already like will suit you, or try something completely new (Pharmacology, Biomedical Engineering, Veterinary Nursing, East European Languages, and so on).
- You can get a feel for what being a student in London would be like, and maybe compare this to visiting universities elsewhere.
- You can use the experience in a variety of other ways: to inform your own thinking, include by reflecting on it in your personal statement; discuss with a career adviser.
- The experience will also enable you to see the non-teaching facilities provided by the university.
- ou will get the chance to meet with other students on the taster course and undergraduate students studying at the university.
Some university taster courses will ask you to write a 150 word statement to support your application to take part.
Here are some ideas about what you could include in your statement (but you don’t need to talk about all of these):
- Your knowledge of the subject, for example you might want to talk about a particular module or assignment, or any interesting and relevant news items you have recently read.
- Your enthusiasm for the subject and how your interests demonstrate this. For example, for a geography course you could talk about your interest in languages, cultures and the natural world and watching documentaries about these topics.
- Extra-curricular activities or work experience you may have had that relate (don’t worry though if you haven’t got anything suitable to write about yet).
- Why you are interested in the university you are applying to. For example, you might mention their location, reputation or methods of teaching (you can find out more about them from their website and course pages).
- What else you think you might gain from the taster day e.g. the chance to meet other students, experience a day being on campus, the opportunity to learn more about your future options, or something else.
You can apply for more than one taster course at the same or different universities, and can apply for the same course more than once if you are not successful the first time.
Some Universities may choose to provide a light lunch. If lunch is provided, this will be stated on the individual taster course page and on the reminders that are sent before the taster course. You will need to specify any dietary requirements or allergies on the taster course application form so that the University can make arrangements in advance. Universities may provide refreshments such as water/tea and biscuits.
In most cases, you will need to bring your own lunch or some money to buy lunch in/around campus. View the website of the relevant participating university to find out more about the local area or on-campus amenities.
All our taster courses are free to attend. Students are responsible for their own travel and food expenses.
Once we have received your completed application form, it will usually take up to 10 working days to find out if you have a place. We will send the outcome to the email address you have given in your application form. At busy times this may vary.
For application forms where you are required to write a 150-word summary, it can take up to 15 working days to know the outcome.
A few taster courses with the 150-word option have an application deadline specified under the course information. In this instance, course organisers will make their decisions after the deadline. You will know the outcome once all applications have been received and the deadline has passed.
Unfortunately, due to limited spaces, guests are not allowed. However, there will be other opportunities for you to bring parents/guardians/friends at open days etc.
There are also many other universities in and around London who offer similar courses, and you can find taster courses at a huge variety of universities across the whole of the UK. You can find these courses by going to Unitasterdays. (Using the drop down box, choose ‘Individuals’ so you can look at events and tasters that don’t have to be booked through your school.)
We believe you’ll find the courses offered by the University of London interesting and beneficial, wherever you ultimately choose to study. Why not try more than one?
For parents and carers
- Taster courses enable young people to try out university a safe way to see if it suits them. University requires a big investment of academic effort as well as a financial investment; this is a way to ensure that they are making an informed decision.
- Taster courses are an also an excellent way to think about future career plans.
- Young people can use a taster course to check if a subject they already like will suit them, or try something completely new (Pharmacology, Biomedical Engineering, Veterinary Nursing, East European Languages, and so on).
- It’s helpful for young people to get a feel for what being a student in London would be like, and maybe compare this to visiting universities elsewhere.
- Young people can use the experience in a variety of other ways: to inform their thinking, include by reflecting on it in their UCAS personal statement or to discuss with parents, carers or a careers adviser.
- The experience will also enable them to see the non-teaching facilities provided by the university.
- Young people will get the chance to meet with other students on the taster course and undergraduate students studying at the university.
You can find more information via our information for parents and carers page.