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Birkbeck University of London!!

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    Nihongo no gakusei desu!!! Birkbeck is nice!
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    I only started at the beginning of this month, but for anyone wanting to, or thinking of applying to BBK, here's what I can share so far:

    Well for starters, I never attended the orientation (I had undergrad finals elsewhere to prepare for before beginning at London), but in all honesty it isn't hard to find your way around. Maps are available online and people (staff and students) are happy to help you find your way.

    As far as the range of people attending (at least my course, BSc biomedicine) it is a diverse group, ethnically, age-wise, and roughly a 50/50 split in gender. Everyone has various academic backgrounds. For example I am a grammar school student and graduate, there are older grads, people with few formal qualifications, young post- A-level students, people educated abroad, etc. I haven't detected any snobbery or elitism from anyone I have met - indeed everyone seems keen to get to know each other and help each other whether they have previously met or not. There's also no seeming evidence of inferiority felt by others either.

    Our classes are split between different colleges around the Bloomsbury area, and this doesn't have much effect on the students. Most seem pretty motivated, as you'd expect from a part-time group who have other pressures taking up most of their time (the reason I chose BBK over UCL full-time is due to other life commitments).

    For the younger students thinking about BBK - you fears are ungrounded, I'm happy to say. Whilst most people drawn to part-time study are going to be older, they're not much older (I'm still in my 20s... ok very, very late 20s...), but even though there are differences you'll find that there being a common ground with the groups (i.e. the subjects) ties you all in together. University is much different from school!

    As far as prestige is concerned... This isn't my first time at university, and I have to say the quality of teaching and work is pretty much what you'd expect from any college at the University of London - indeed we share facilities with other colleges, such as UCL and Kings, and this is not by coincidence. Make no bones about it, if you slack off just like any of their other colleges you will be kept under the watchful eye to ensure you really deserve or are able to keep pace with a UoL place.

    I think the 'lack of prestige' label really comes from the numbers of students who do not have great academic backgrounds before studying at BBK. Nonetheless, the education offered is not compromised here, although I suspect drop out rates may be slightly higher because of this and the fact some older students may have trouble getting back into the swing of studying again, life commitments get in the way, or maybe they realised they simply didn't want to continue after all.

    So in a nutshell:

    You're studying at UoL which is no bad thing.
    You have the benefit of close ties with students of other colleges, and people from diverse backgrounds.
    It is part-time for the most part, enabling you to hold down commitments elsewhere (like I said before, this was the deciding factor to me).
    Elitism is only for those who care about it - Studying at BBK instead of Imperial or Cambridge won't affect your passion to learn or intelligence, unless there are issues there anyway.
    There's a good mix of those with few formal qualifications and advanced qualifications.
    There are lots of extra-curricular activities (for want of a better phrase) open to you.
    For those interested in humanities subjects, you have the benefit of studying in the heart of one of the great capital cities of the world - there is a lot to experience there!
    BBK has some world-ranked departments, and links with Nobel laureates.
    The people are friendly and helpful, and for the most part great to be around
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    (Original post by jgh245)
    I only started at the beginning of this month, but for anyone wanting to, or thinking of applying to BBK, here's what I can share so far:

    Well for starters, I never attended the orientation (I had undergrad finals elsewhere to prepare for before beginning at London), but in all honesty it isn't hard to find your way around. Maps are available online and people (staff and students) are happy to help you find your way.

    As far as the range of people attending (at least my course, BSc biomedicine) it is a diverse group, ethnically, age-wise, and roughly a 50/50 split in gender. Everyone has various academic backgrounds. For example I am a grammar school student and graduate, there are older grads, people with few formal qualifications, young post- A-level students, people educated abroad, etc. I haven't detected any snobbery or elitism from anyone I have met - indeed everyone seems keen to get to know each other and help each other whether they have previously met or not. There's also no seeming evidence of inferiority felt by others either.

    Our classes are split between different colleges around the Bloomsbury area, and this doesn't have much effect on the students. Most seem pretty motivated, as you'd expect from a part-time group who have other pressures taking up most of their time (the reason I chose BBK over UCL full-time is due to other life commitments).

    For the younger students thinking about BBK - you fears are ungrounded, I'm happy to say. Whilst most people drawn to part-time study are going to be older, they're not much older (I'm still in my 20s... ok very, very late 20s...), but even though there are differences you'll find that there being a common ground with the groups (i.e. the subjects) ties you all in together. University is much different from school!

    As far as prestige is concerned... This isn't my first time at university, and I have to say the quality of teaching and work is pretty much what you'd expect from any college at the University of London - indeed we share facilities with other colleges, such as UCL and Kings, and this is not by coincidence. Make no bones about it, if you slack off just like any of their other colleges you will be kept under the watchful eye to ensure you really deserve or are able to keep pace with a UoL place.

    I think the 'lack of prestige' label really comes from the numbers of students who do not have great academic backgrounds before studying at BBK. Nonetheless, the education offered is not compromised here, although I suspect drop out rates may be slightly higher because of this and the fact some older students may have trouble getting back into the swing of studying again, life commitments get in the way, or maybe they realised they simply didn't want to continue after all.

    So in a nutshell:

    You're studying at UoL which is no bad thing.
    You have the benefit of close ties with students of other colleges, and people from diverse backgrounds.
    It is part-time for the most part, enabling you to hold down commitments elsewhere (like I said before, this was the deciding factor to me).
    Elitism is only for those who care about it - Studying at BBK instead of Imperial or Cambridge won't affect your passion to learn or intelligence, unless there are issues there anyway.
    There's a good mix of those with few formal qualifications and advanced qualifications.
    There are lots of extra-curricular activities (for want of a better phrase) open to you.
    For those interested in humanities subjects, you have the benefit of studying in the heart of one of the great capital cities of the world - there is a lot to experience there!
    BBK has some world-ranked departments, and links with Nobel laureates.
    The people are friendly and helpful, and for the most part great to be around
    I'm in my final year (BSc Molecular Biology). For the most part, I agree with this.
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    I'm hoping to apply to Birkbeck, but i'm a bit worried. I'll be 19 when I go and I don't think they do accommodation. Still, I should get a better sense of independence.
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    (Original post by hayleyxd)
    I'm hoping to apply to Birkbeck, but i'm a bit worried. I'll be 19 when I go and I don't think they do accommodation. Still, I should get a better sense of independence.
    They don't have their own accommodation, but like all University of London colleges, students have access to the UoL intercollegiate halls.

    http://www.halls.london.ac.uk/
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    (Original post by admbeatmaker)
    They don't have their own accommodation, but like all University of London colleges, students have access to the UoL intercollegiate halls.

    http://www.halls.london.ac.uk/
    Thank you!
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    I can also tell you, a good portion of my History classes are quite young actually (18-mid twenties). So college leavers shouldn't worry one bit.
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    (Original post by jgh245)
    I only started at the beginning of this month, but for anyone wanting to, or thinking of applying to BBK, here's what I can share so far:

    Well for starters, I never attended the orientation (I had undergrad finals elsewhere to prepare for before beginning at London), but in all honesty it isn't hard to find your way around. Maps are available online and people (staff and students) are happy to help you find your way.

    As far as the range of people attending (at least my course, BSc biomedicine) it is a diverse group, ethnically, age-wise, and roughly a 50/50 split in gender. Everyone has various academic backgrounds. For example I am a grammar school student and graduate, there are older grads, people with few formal qualifications, young post- A-level students, people educated abroad, etc. I haven't detected any snobbery or elitism from anyone I have met - indeed everyone seems keen to get to know each other and help each other whether they have previously met or not. There's also no seeming evidence of inferiority felt by others either.

    Our classes are split between different colleges around the Bloomsbury area, and this doesn't have much effect on the students. Most seem pretty motivated, as you'd expect from a part-time group who have other pressures taking up most of their time (the reason I chose BBK over UCL full-time is due to other life commitments).

    For the younger students thinking about BBK - you fears are ungrounded, I'm happy to say. Whilst most people drawn to part-time study are going to be older, they're not much older (I'm still in my 20s... ok very, very late 20s...), but even though there are differences you'll find that there being a common ground with the groups (i.e. the subjects) ties you all in together. University is much different from school!

    As far as prestige is concerned... This isn't my first time at university, and I have to say the quality of teaching and work is pretty much what you'd expect from any college at the - indeed we share facilities with other colleges, such as UCL and Kings, and this is not by coincidence. Make no bones about it, if you slack off just like any of their other colleges you will be kept under the watchful eye to ensure you really deserve or are able to keep pace with a UoL place.

    I think the 'lack of prestige' label really comes from the numbers of students who do not have great academic backgrounds before studying at BBK. Nonetheless, the education offered is not compromised here, although I suspect drop out rates may be slightly higher because of this and the fact some older students may have trouble getting back into the swing of studying again, life commitments get in the way, or maybe they realised they simply didn't want to continue after all.

    So in a nutshell:

    You're studying at UoL which is no bad thing.
    You have the benefit of close ties with students of other colleges, and people from diverse backgrounds.
    It is part-time for the most part, enabling you to hold down commitments elsewhere (like I said before, this was the deciding factor to me).
    Elitism is only for those who care about it - Studying at BBK instead of Imperial or Cambridge won't affect your passion to learn or intelligence, unless there are issues there anyway.
    There's a good mix of those with few formal qualifications and advanced qualifications.
    There are lots of extra-curricular activities (for want of a better phrase) open to you.
    For those interested in humanities subjects, you have the benefit of studying in the heart of one of the great capital cities of the world - there is a lot to experience there!
    BBK has some world-ranked departments, and links with Nobel laureates.
    The people are friendly and helpful, and for the most part great to be around

    agree ^
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    (Original post by Revd. Mike)
    I'm in my final year (BSc Molecular Biology). For the most part, I agree with this.
    Just curious, anything you've found different, as I'm only in my first year there?
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    I agree with all the above as well. I'm only in week 4 of my first year at Birkbeck (I'm doing a one-year MSc), but so far I'm very impressed with the university, quality of teaching and everything. On my course I would say that the average age is a bit higher (maybe around 30 years old), but then again it is a Masters course where most people gain relevant work experience to the subject area before they apply so that's not too surprising.

    Overall, I'm really enjoying it so far and I see no reason why that would change later on during the year. I would highly recommend Birkbeck to other people.
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    (Original post by jgh245)
    Just curious, anything you've found different, as I'm only in my first year there?
    For one thing, the having classes in different locations is actually a little irksome sometimes. It's not a major thing, it can just get a little confusing when I have 6 different venues for my two modules depending on what's going on when.

    My main gripes with the biological sciences department are (I think) largely specific to my year group and shouldn't hopefully affect you guys at all. The main issue stems from the fact that there was a lot of restructuring going on at the time we started, so we ended up getting screwed over a bit. For one thing, my degree course technically doesn't exist any more (I'm technically studying molecular biology, but they cancelled that programme the year I started so I've been following the Biomedicine route. I was told when it came to graduation I could put either on my certificates though, which kinda made me question the validity of it all!)

    Another ******* that was an offshoot of that was that loads of my modules were so totally removed from what I wanted to be studying, it was quite annoying and it made it hard for me to be enthusiastic about them.

    I believe they've tried to fix this ******* now, but for us, there was no where NEAR enough lab work.

    There's a tutor shortage in the department, which lead to certain modules being taught by hopelessly incompetent people. (Again, this may have been resolved for your years).

    I also get very frustrated by the reading week systems. They arrange our modules into 'study blocks' of three weeks, with a reading week in between, so weeks 1-3 are lectures, week 4 is a reading week, 5-7 lectures, 8 reading week etc. I know I shouldn't be complaining about time off, but considering that we're only part-time and we only get like 6 hours of contact time per week, surely we shouldn't be randomly taking off such huge amounts of time, considering the rush they're in to cover all the material? It just feel like a bit of a cop out when they have these very brief, introductory modules with a huge pile of "read this at home kids" afterwards.
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    Birkbeck is nice. Go for it.
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    (Original post by jazzybob)
    Hi guys, I've got an interview on Friday at Birkbeck for a BA in Philosophy, Politics and History starting this year. I was wondering if anyone had any advice to give on what I might be expected to answer. i wouldn't think there'd be any model answers i'd have to give as that was all done in my statement.

    I think I have to add that I'm absolutely delighted to have been offered an interview given that i've only got BCC after some resits because things didn't go to plan in my gap year.

    i'm expecting the things like
    - why do you like about the course?
    - why part time degree?
    - what will you go on to do?
    - you wrote this in your application statement. discuss it further?

    i'm sure there are more things to be thought of which i haven't managed to write down in this post but i'd appreciate any help you guys are willing to offer!

    thanks

    (btw... i couldn't be bothered with the punctuation half way through...)
    I've also just received an email inviting me to interview at Birkbeck on Friday 24th for Philosophy, but full-time rather than part-time. My email said that the interview would consist of 'an informl discussion about one aspect of philosophy'. It didn't say that there would be any other questions or anything but I'm assuming there will be some general ones. Ones like 'Why this course and why at Birkbeck' and 'what can you bring to the university' and just stuff like that
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    (Original post by hayleyxd)
    I'm hoping to apply to Birkbeck, but i'm a bit worried. I'll be 19 when I go and I don't think they do accommodation. Still, I should get a better sense of independence.
    They do through ULU accommodation.
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    hey guys

    I am an overseas student and I am wondering about my chances of being employed at the end of programme. as they have abolished post study work visa and how will this affect about my career prospects in London if I choose Birkbek? will any companies be willing to sponsor my work visa that I will have attended Birkbeck?
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    (Original post by GLOBETROTT3R)
    hey guys

    I am an overseas students and I am wondering about my chances of being employed at the end of programme. as they have abolished post study work visa and how will this affect about my career prospects in London if I choose Birkbek? will any companies be willing to sponsor my work visa that I will have attended Birkbeck?
    That might depend on your grades and who is the employer as well as the subject you are studying. Birkbeck is an average uni.
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    Like with doing a degree anywhere, there are no guarantees of finding a job at all. It will depend on lots of things like the type of job you want, what the job market is like in that field, previous relevant work experience etc. As university Birkbeck has a very good reputation and having the University of London mark on your certificate will certainly look good when you apply for work, but it's not going to be the most important factor as no longer do employers care only about your degree. When the best candidates for each job will have not only a good degree but also great work exerience, great personal skills, and strong knowledge of the sector they want to work in you will probably find it hard to compete with them if all you are relying on is your degree. Employers can be really picky these days as they have so many applicants to choose from.
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    as far as I am concerned top companies like JP Morgan, Barclays, Accenture don't cooperate with Birkbeck and target its student. I feel it in my bones I won't have any chance of leaping at the opportunity of working for any top ones.Therefore I am able to see the writing on the wall if I choose Birkbeck and I am going to study the particular business field and I have never had any experience in this realm so it will be laborious and taxing to sponsor my work visa.
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    (Original post by GLOBETROTT3R)
    as far as I am concerned top companies like JP Morgan, Barclays, Accenture don't cooperate with Birkbeck and target its student.
    I don't think any of the big banks and investment companies deliberately refuse to accept people with a degree from Birkbeck. In fact, on my course there are several people who at the moment work for some big and well-known companies both in the financial industry and other industries and they have been encouraged by their employers to do the course they are on now. If you meet all the criteria that these companies ask for you stand a chance to get into their graduate programmes, but it will always be competitive either way. Relevant work experience that can count towards being accepted is paid and unpaid work in things like retail, customer service and other jobs that involve cash handling and working with the general public. If you are able to gain any experience like this at the moment it will put you in a much better position later when you start applying for jobs no matter what company you apply for.

    Birkbeck's main focus in terms of their teaching is to give people who would otherwise find it hard to access university courses a chance to gain a degree. This means that a large part of the student population will be mature students who are currently working full-time and study part-time in the evenings or by distance learning.
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    (Original post by TheLyther)
    I am thinking of enrolling onto a Business course at Birkbeck university starting in October. But i dont know much about it.

    Is anyone at this university or know about it. What do you think of it?

    I know that the courses are in the evenings and I'll be doing a 4 year part time course (but apparently i can do a full time in year 3, so technically 3 year course).
    Are you an undergraduate? If so, I would not advise you to go there unless you dont mind 'distant learning' - The uni is very good and is highly respected, but if you want to have an actual 'uni' experience (societies, clubs, meeting people your age) it isnt a very good place. Most people are adults so you may find it hard to fit in. Also, they will all go home to their families and you will be alone. I was very close to applying for Birkbeck but my teacher persuaded me not to for the reasons i have listed above. If you dont mind a distant learning atmosphere, go ahead and apply because the uni is great. Also, just to let you know, they dont offer accommodation

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