Giving guidance for students on decision-making process
At the very beginning of a student's journey to university, there should be a considered research and decision-making process. At this stage, university counsellor plays an important role in guiding them and signposting the important factors they should consider when making their decision.
Often, university ranking plays a leading role in the decision-making process for students. However, in reality, there will be a number of criteria which shape their university experience. Therefore, our counsellor’s role is to encourage students to not just focus on the ranking but be aware of the diversity of choice available to them. They also help students to understand the locations of their potential universities and what it would be like to live and study there, helping them to choose a location based on knowledge rather than assumption.
The global pandemic has been affecting the students’ choice of university and interrupting the study plan of many students. Lori Fairbairn, BIS Hanoi’s Counsellor, advises students to be flexible in their thinking and adaptable in their goals. As a counsellor, she keeps well informed of the universities’ responses to COVID, and can help students change destinations, even at a very late date. This is extremely helpful for not only our current Year 13 students but also our past graduates, with whom she continues to work with.
Understanding the application system
At BIS Hanoi, popular university destinations include anywhere from the UK and North America, to Australia, Netherlands, Japan, Korea and Singapore. This broad choice of universities requires students to navigate a variety of application systems for which the requirements and structure may vary significantly between countries.
As well as providing a new challenge to students, the application process is often unfamiliar to parents too. This is where the university counsellor plays a vital role in guiding students as well as parents. Their experience and knowledge of the international application processes equips them to successfully steer students through this system, ensuring that they are prepared rather than overwhelmed by the challenge.
For example, at BIS Hanoi, we understand how difficult the Korean application system can be for our Sixth Form students and parents so we work directly with our community to ensure the process is as open and transparent as possible. Our Korean Liaison Officer is currently contacting all of the document review schools in Korea to ensure that we are up-to-date on best practice for Korean applications and we look forward to sharing this information with our community soon.