International College
Student pathways to The University of Sheffield

How to prepare for an undergraduate degree in business

Posted 02 June 2015
How to prepare for an undergraduate degree in business

Choosing to study for your business degree in the UK is a smart move. Home to top universities and business schools, important European financial and services sectors, entrepreneurial flair, and major multinational corporations, it’s a great place to start your business career.

But first comes your business degree. Studying for a degree abroad takes some extra planning and preparation, but putting in the effort is well worth it. There’s no more rewarding a learning experience than one that challenges, excites and opens up new doors – and nothing does so quite like some study time overseas.

We know you might be a little anxious as well as excited. So, to give you the best start possible, here are some tips for preparation for an undergraduate business degree in the UK.

Line up some work experience

Whether this is before you begin your studies, or during holiday periods while you attend university or college, real world work experience can be hugely beneficial. Giving you the chance to put your learning into practise, it also helps to build confidence, and is a learning experience like no other. The skills and knowledge you pick up in the workplace can inform your studies, giving you fresh ideas and input for debates and discussions in class.

Work experience will also help you identify what you love, and what you hate, about business. You’ll find out which areas of business interest you, and get a better idea of where you want to steer your career in future.

Think about what interests you

Most business degrees allow you to specialise. The world of business is incredibly broad, ranging from funding entrepreneurial start-ups through to international human resources management. Contract negotiations, business ethics, economics and accounts – there are bound to be specific areas of business that speak to you and fuel your passion.

Before you begin your course, it’s worth thinking about which areas of business you’d like to explore more deeply, and where you’d like your career to go. Of course, this might all change as you study and learn more, but considering your options now can help you decide more efficiently when it comes to choosing elective modules that allow you to specialise within your business degree.

Consider a foundation course

International students face some extra challenges when it comes to preparation for an undergraduate degree in the UK. Because teaching methods, curriculums and standards vary from country to country, you can be left without quite the right level of qualifications to enter directly into an undergraduate business degree programme.

Language can be another barrier, whereby your English language skills aren’t quite strong enough and so you might struggle at British university level.

That’s why foundation courses are available at UK universities and colleges, like the University of Sheffield International College. It offers a foundation course specifically aimed at business students.

Foundation courses like these help you prepare for your first year of an undergraduate degree in the UK. They ensure that your knowledge, skills and qualifications meet the requirements of the university, and that your English language skills are more than strong enough to cope with the demands of degree study here. In addition, it gives you a pre-degree year in which to get settled in the UK, meet fellow students, make new friends and generally adjust to student life.

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