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Upsetting changes in Durham Grant Scheme

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    Hi all, is there anyone affected by this changes in Durham Grant Scheme? We cannot have it anymore if we rent outside Uni
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    (Original post by doom)
    Hi all, is there anyone affected by this changes in Durham Grant Scheme? We cannot have it anymore if we rent outside Uni
    It's only for students starting from 2012, so if you are currently studying at Durham you won't be affected.

    Also new students will get more money (£3,000 per year rather than the current £1,000 per year, and they only have to live in college for their 1st and 3rd year, not all three).

    So if you are a student starting this October, you would still get £6000 if you lived out in second and third year, which is better than the current £3000 over three years.

    But I agree, it's a ridiculous new rule.
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    Thank you for the reply.
    It is indeed a ridiculous rule especially for mature students.
    Unless I am able to move to a college with all my family (pets included) I will not be eligible to receive the grant.
    And for those that have to move to Durham, with their household an live there 12 months per year, college isn't an option.
    And I am not too sure if my college room mates will enjoy the crying and general mess of 3 children
    The situation has been revised by the University and I hope those that need grants will write to the Treasury to make them aware of this ordeal!
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    Just keeping the money with the university. Wouldn't expect anything different.
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    As a graduate, and also a mature student, I've often found that Durham preaches about class in lectures and, yet, appears to be going against their teaching in day to day administration. It is no surprise to me that this has happened. They stop students of all socioeconomic backgrounds from taking up employment during the holidays to wait a few weeks to sign a few forms to register for modules for the following academic year just so they promote the virtues of living in college. So what are we supposed to do geniuses? Some of us hate university sport and take part in sport that is not catered for at university level. Go out clubbing in Klute and go out on the pull? Yeah? I can do that at home. How is registration seen as an academic commitment I don't know.

    It's like the price of taking part in sport keeps going up. I renounced my sports card because I don't see why I should subsidise a bunch of fat oafs who chuck an egg ball around the pitch. I wouldn't mind if costs were spread out to sports using the fields but the costs were spread across the whole spectrum. And at £120 for three years that is a pretty penny to anyone's pocket.

    I wouldn't recommend Durham to anyone who wishes to find employment during the holidays or those that despise anything that resembles a boarding school atmosphere, which Durham does on many levels. University education has been commercially pimped for decades and Durham are a pinnacle of this. They do this with careers fairs. There is more to the graduate market than investment banking. Stop trying to hide your costs by bending over for IB firms and condition your students into thinking they can earn lost of money because of you, and no, you did not give them all these transferable skills either. At least Harvard puts you on a placement where the university has a direct influence to your career progression of a related area to your study and, as a result, do not claim undue credit onto your own personal achievement for which they have little to no responsibility for.

    I'd recommend everyone to look into financial assistance and see if the "worth" of a degree is really justified. Higher education has been commercially pimped for too long so this grant scheme is just another sign.
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    (Original post by NDGAARONDI)


    As a graduate, and also a mature student, I've often found that Durham preaches about class in lectures and, yet, appears to be going against their teaching in day to day administration. It is no surprise to me that this has happened. They stop students of all socioeconomic backgrounds from taking up employment during the holidays to wait a few weeks to sign a few forms to register for modules for the following academic year just so they promote the virtues of living in college. So what are we supposed to do geniuses? Some of us hate university sport and take part in sport that is not catered for at university level. Go out clubbing in Klute and go out on the pull? Yeah? I can do that at home. How is registration seen as an academic commitment I don't know.

    It's like the price of taking part in sport keeps going up. I renounced my sports card because I don't see why I should subsidise a bunch of fat oafs who chuck an egg ball around the pitch. I wouldn't mind if costs were spread out to sports using the fields but the costs were spread across the whole spectrum. And at £120 for three years that is a pretty penny to anyone's pocket.


    I wouldn't recommend Durham to anyone who wishes to find employment during the holidays or those that despise anything that resembles a boarding school atmosphere, which Durham does on many levels. University education has been commercially pimped for decades and Durham are a pinnacle of this. They do this with careers fairs. There is more to the graduate market than investment banking. Stop trying to hide your costs by bending over for IB firms and condition your students into thinking they can earn lost of money because of you, and no, you did not give them all these transferable skills either. At least Harvard puts you on a placement where the university has a direct influence to your career progression of a related area to your study and, as a result, do not claim undue credit onto your own personal achievement for which they have little to no responsibility for.

    I'd recommend everyone to look into financial assistance and see if the "worth" of a degree is really justified. Higher education has been commercially pimped for too long so this grant scheme is just another sign.
    Are you basically saying you don't see the point in having those 3 weeks after exams where nothing happens? It's not all about sport, lots of stuff happens then, lots of FUN stuff, it gives everyone a chance to let their hair down for a few weeks after exams, spend quality time with friends before you go your separate ways for 3 months. Also registration is all done online now, and I've heard rumours that they're going to start teaching courses for the following year in those few weeks. And I don't see how it stops people finding summer placements etc, we don't exactly finish term much later than other universities, and there are ways around it if you do have to miss the registration days.

    I have to somewhat agree with you about the high cost of sport; I too have no interest in university sport but I know that it means a lot to a lot of students and is a big part of university life.

    I do however agree with your point about careers fairs; they do seem to mostly revolve around investment banking and law firms; they were even present at the "science" fair which in terms of science just had a few engineering companies I think, not even any pharma companies...
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    (Original post by purple-girl)
    Are you basically saying you don't see the point in having those 3 weeks after exams where nothing happens? It's not all about sport, lots of stuff happens then, lots of FUN stuff, it gives everyone a chance to let their hair down for a few weeks after exams, spend quality time with friends before you go your separate ways for 3 months. Also registration is all done online now, and I've heard rumours that they're going to start teaching courses for the following year in those few weeks. And I don't see how it stops people finding summer placements etc, we don't exactly finish term much later than other universities, and there are ways around it if you do have to miss the registration days.
    Most of what was happening during those three weeks didn't interest me and I wanted to earn money to justify purchasing overpriced academic textbooks that were funded from research councils whose money comes from the tax payer plus with a little extra for some ideals.

    (Original post by purple-girl)
    I have to somewhat agree with you about the high cost of sport; I too have no interest in university sport but I know that it means a lot to a lot of students and is a big part of university life.
    It gives me the impression that nobody has played sport at a sizeable level prior to university. I know the massive increase in numbers means smaller sized sports become more popular but even then the usual most popular sports are still dominant as they outside of university life. I was interested in sailing, kayaking and rifling but the sailing was done about 20 miles away from campus and it was very expensive in terms of transport. That put me off kayaking and I don't think I found rifling but I didn't look for too long since the air club was the original plan, but it closed down before I joined due to finances. Which then makes me wonder why they didn't bother to increase the cost of sports membership. Because it's not rugby, football or rowing? :rolleyes: I did think about archery but I think I was told that they received nothing from the collected funds from sports membership too. So, basically, the sports I was interested in, didn't benefit from the sports membership fee but I still had to pay it to do sport.

    (Original post by purple-girl)
    I do however agree with your point about careers fairs; they do seem to mostly revolve around investment banking and law firms; they were even present at the "science" fair which in terms of science just had a few engineering companies I think, not even any pharma companies...
    I thought I was just getting bad luck when I went to the general ones! I did ask a lecturer at my department, the School of Applied Social Sciences, but I didn't get much of an answer. If people want to do IB I have no problem, but we're not all the same. Some of us would have studied a different subject if we knew from the start that the subject of choice for my degree has little to no relation to my future job. I even took up the idea of having subject based placements with a lecturer, so those who study sociology and criminology can get some experience in correctional settings (they need not be top security prisons), Home Office, Probation, etc. I even asked some societies who oversee those funky journals related to my degree if they do work experience schemes but was told none existed. This was while I was still itnerested in a career in academia but over time I felt more and more disillusioned with higher education in general (probably doesn't help reading up on genocide either, writing all the stuff that goes on the world to only put it to one side because EastEnders is on TV?!). I mean if I studied medicine it would be a good idea to think I want to be a doctor no? *sigh*

    I do wonder who organises these career fairs because even the military and journalism weren't represented and I was a little surprised at that, given that we tend to have a a fair few high ranked officers in the military currently serving, or recently retired, just to promote the stereotype in a fun way! But I do think any current Durham student who is taken aback at the overrepresentation of IB to the detriment of subject specific careers should take it up. I'll probably moan about this in GUD some time (I've been meaning for a long while) to see if other universities cater better at this.
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    (Original post by NDGAARONDI)


    As a graduate, and also a mature student, I've often found that Durham preaches about class in lectures and, yet, appears to be going against their teaching in day to day administration. It is no surprise to me that this has happened. They stop students of all socioeconomic backgrounds from taking up employment during the holidays to wait a few weeks to sign a few forms to register for modules for the following academic year just so they promote the virtues of living in college. So what are we supposed to do geniuses? Some of us hate university sport and take part in sport that is not catered for at university level. Go out clubbing in Klute and go out on the pull? Yeah? I can do that at home. How is registration seen as an academic commitment I don't know.

    It's like the price of taking part in sport keeps going up. I renounced my sports card because I don't see why I should subsidise a bunch of fat oafs who chuck an egg ball around the pitch. I wouldn't mind if costs were spread out to sports using the fields but the costs were spread across the whole spectrum. And at £120 for three years that is a pretty penny to anyone's pocket.

    I wouldn't recommend Durham to anyone who wishes to find employment during the holidays or those that despise anything that resembles a boarding school atmosphere, which Durham does on many levels. University education has been commercially pimped for decades and Durham are a pinnacle of this. They do this with careers fairs. There is more to the graduate market than investment banking. Stop trying to hide your costs by bending over for IB firms and condition your students into thinking they can earn lost of money because of you, and no, you did not give them all these transferable skills either. At least Harvard puts you on a placement where the university has a direct influence to your career progression of a related area to your study and, as a result, do not claim undue credit onto your own personal achievement for which they have little to no responsibility for.

    I'd recommend everyone to look into financial assistance and see if the "worth" of a degree is really justified. Higher education has been commercially pimped for too long so this grant scheme is just another sign.
    The registration date in June isn't all their fault. They need to have the term dates that long because otherwise it's not technically a full time course and we would all be part time students and not entitled to loans, etc. Also a lot of science students spend 2 of the 3 weeks doing labs for their dissertation so at least they are being taught. There are plans to do teaching during those weeks, or end the term earlier. This year registration will be online so students probably won't need to be in Durham.

    Did you not think of going home, getting a job and then just returning to Durham for 1 day to register or filling in the exemption form? I know several people who go home to work, book the last Friday in June off work and come up to register if they didn't get permission to register in advance.

    The £120 is mainly for insurance. It also insures you to use college gyms and to play college sport.

    Also I seem to get emails every other day advertising careers presentations by businesses/charities who aren't banks or law firms. I've had emails about presentations by retail companies, arts companies, advertising agencies, charity graduate schemes, manufacturing companies, technology companies, statistical market research, event management, etc. Companies have to pay to attend the careers fair so it makes sense for smaller companies to do presentations where they can actually have a powerpoint and show students what they are about.

    Everyone seems to complain about the careers fair being mainly banks and law firms, but nobody seems to ever look at the huge number of other presentations, careers events or look at the vacancy website which has vacancies in all areas.

    Also, did you really expect to be able to sail in the middle of a city?!
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    (Original post by doom)
    Thank you for the reply.
    It is indeed a ridiculous rule especially for mature students.
    Unless I am able to move to a college with all my family (pets included) I will not be eligible to receive the grant.
    And for those that have to move to Durham, with their household an live there 12 months per year, college isn't an option.
    And I am not too sure if my college room mates will enjoy the crying and general mess of 3 children
    The situation has been revised by the University and I hope those that need grants will write to the Treasury to make them aware of this ordeal!
    A lot of it is to do with the government's national scholarship scheme. The money from that scheme is part of the money that funds the Durham Grant, and the NSS money can only be spent on fee waivers or accommodation as far as I'm aware (ie not given as cash).

    Have you asked if they will make an exception for you? Queen's campus students are exempt from the living in in 3rd year rule so I would expect that they would say that as a mature student you don't need to live in at all. If the college can't provide family accommodation then they can't expect you to live in, anyway.
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    (Original post by NDGAARONDI)
    Most of what was happening during those three weeks didn't interest me and I wanted to earn money to justify purchasing overpriced academic textbooks that were funded from research councils whose money comes from the tax payer plus with a little extra for some ideals.



    It gives me the impression that nobody has played sport at a sizeable level prior to university. I know the massive increase in numbers means smaller sized sports become more popular but even then the usual most popular sports are still dominant as they outside of university life. I was interested in sailing, kayaking and rifling but the sailing was done about 20 miles away from campus and it was very expensive in terms of transport. That put me off kayaking and I don't think I found rifling but I didn't look for too long since the air club was the original plan, but it closed down before I joined due to finances. Which then makes me wonder why they didn't bother to increase the cost of sports membership. Because it's not rugby, football or rowing? :rolleyes: I did think about archery but I think I was told that they received nothing from the collected funds from sports membership too. So, basically, the sports I was interested in, didn't benefit from the sports membership fee but I still had to pay it to do sport.



    I thought I was just getting bad luck when I went to the general ones! I did ask a lecturer at my department, the School of Applied Social Sciences, but I didn't get much of an answer. If people want to do IB I have no problem, but we're not all the same. Some of us would have studied a different subject if we knew from the start that the subject of choice for my degree has little to no relation to my future job. I even took up the idea of having subject based placements with a lecturer, so those who study sociology and criminology can get some experience in correctional settings (they need not be top security prisons), Home Office, Probation, etc. I even asked some societies who oversee those funky journals related to my degree if they do work experience schemes but was told none existed. This was while I was still itnerested in a career in academia but over time I felt more and more disillusioned with higher education in general (probably doesn't help reading up on genocide either, writing all the stuff that goes on the world to only put it to one side because EastEnders is on TV?!). I mean if I studied medicine it would be a good idea to think I want to be a doctor no? *sigh*

    I do wonder who organises these career fairs because even the military and journalism weren't represented and I was a little surprised at that, given that we tend to have a a fair few high ranked officers in the military currently serving, or recently retired, just to promote the stereotype in a fun way! But I do think any current Durham student who is taken aback at the overrepresentation of IB to the detriment of subject specific careers should take it up. I'll probably moan about this in GUD some time (I've been meaning for a long while) to see if other universities cater better at this.
    Journalism doesn't tend to have graduate schemes, people tend to do a lot of work experience and pray that they are offered a job at somewhere they've done work experience at. The military tend to be at Durham careers fairs so I'm not sure what you mean there.

    Also have you joined the social science society? They're doing a visit to a prison and are always promoting the Jo Butler sociology talks. The majority of lecturers don't work in prisons or outside academia so I'm not sure shadowing them would be much use at all.

    The government are stopping all informal work experience in the civil service so you wouldn't be able to get a home office placement (not that lecturers would be there anyway), but the civil service came and did a graduate scheme presentation anyway as they are not subject to the recruitment freeze.

    The police and prison service won't be at careers fairs because they have a recruitment freeze.

    Some university departments do have stalls at the careers fairs (the discovery fair I think not the big one in October), but since lecturers are readily available it would probably make more sense to talk to your lecturers or dissertation supervisor, they don't need a stand at a careers fair as they're in Durham all the time.
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    (Original post by undergradstudent)
    A lot of it is to do with the government's national scholarship scheme. The money from that scheme is part of the money that funds the Durham Grant, and the NSS money can only be spent on fee waivers or accommodation as far as I'm aware (ie not given as cash).

    Have you asked if they will make an exception for you? Queen's campus students are exempt from the living in in 3rd year rule so I would expect that they would say that as a mature student you don't need to live in at all. If the college can't provide family accommodation then they can't expect you to live in, anyway.
    Thank you again for your thoughts.
    I have read the access agreement between Durham University and the Office for Fair Access (OFFA).
    I have also read all the governmental information about the national scholarship programme.
    the universities are allowed to implement any eligibility criteria they wish, within the specific goals of the national scholarship programme, which are to support students from under-represented backgrounds.
    Durham University in there OFFA agreement wrote that colegiate life was an integral part of student experience and that as such applying to live in a college would be compulsory for a student to be eligible to receive the Durham grant scheme.
    All we can hope as mature students is that Durham University agrees to revise its eligibility criteria.
    And this will happen if people talk to them about this situation.
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    (Original post by doom)
    Durham University in there OFFA agreement wrote that colegiate life was an integral part of student experience and that as such applying to live in a college would be compulsory for a student to be eligible to receive the Durham grant scheme.
    Thanks to the collegiate strucuture (my senior tutor specifically), I was almost forced to withdraw a few years ago and goodness knows where I'd be know, if I'd even still be alive. The collegiate support and experience completely failed me and I know it has failed other students. The blame doesn't just lie entirely with college but they must take much of the blame.

    I have never had much to do with my college during my number of years at Durham and don't feel I've really missed out on anything. My concern has been my departments at the wider university. I really resent the way the collegiate structure is forced on students, and the complete arrogance of the university in their assumption that it is an integral part of the student experience. To force the "collegiate experience" on financially disadvantaged students is completely disgraceful
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    (Original post by undergradstudent)
    The registration date in June isn't all their fault. They need to have the term dates that long because otherwise it's not technically a full time course
    Who told you this? What evidence is there that, by not having the registration date there it will not be deemed a full time course? I've heard this before but both Oxford and Cambridge have shorter terms and they don't impose mandatory personal attendance for registering for next year's modules. Neither do Leeds, as I used to correspond to a graduate from there.

    In addition, how is twiddling my thumbs for three weeks listening to music suddenly a justification to make it a full time course when no exams, no coursework deadlines are placed, and no classes are held in this three week period? The only good thing is it made me looking forward to chatting up one of the catering staff in my college. :rolleyes:

    (Original post by undergradstudent)
    Did you not think of going home, getting a job and then just returning to Durham for 1 day to register or filling in the exemption form? I know several people who go home to work, book the last Friday in June off work and come up to register if they didn't get permission to register in advance.
    Well, I didn't know when my registration times exactly were and when I did, the cost of public transport was prohibitive to do that. My department didn't tell me the times until the cost of travel went up a fair bit. Plus I used to use a coach from home to London, another one from London to Newcastle, and then train to Durham to keep costs low. It meant a day was spent just for travel. So, depending on rail and coach prices at the time, along with the day to register, that could mean losing out on three days pay. I should have just left regardless because they never bother to fine students anyway. I just see it as very schoolish. I had much more freedom at my FE College where I had a good visit since graduating and more at my secondary school. We're adults and should be treated as such, otherwise you'll get instances where some of us will behave like kids. Staff at Durham may say there's more to life than money but when they're bending over for every finance and accounting firm on the planet inviting them to careers fairs I don't think they can justify that point any more.
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    (Original post by NDGAARONDI)
    Who told you this? What evidence is there that, by not having the registration date there it will not be deemed a full time course? I've heard this before but both Oxford and Cambridge have shorter terms and they don't impose mandatory personal attendance for registering for next year's modules. Neither do Leeds, as I used to correspond to a graduate from there.

    In addition, how is twiddling my thumbs for three weeks listening to music suddenly a justification to make it a full time course when no exams, no coursework deadlines are placed, and no classes are held in this three week period? The only good thing is it made me looking forward to chatting up one of the catering staff in my college. :rolleyes:



    Well, I didn't know when my registration times exactly were and when I did, the cost of public transport was prohibitive to do that. My department didn't tell me the times until the cost of travel went up a fair bit. Plus I used to use a coach from home to London, another one from London to Newcastle, and then train to Durham to keep costs low. It meant a day was spent just for travel. So, depending on rail and coach prices at the time, along with the day to register, that could mean losing out on three days pay. I should have just left regardless because they never bother to fine students anyway. I just see it as very schoolish. I had much more freedom at my FE College where I had a good visit since graduating and more at my secondary school. We're adults and should be treated as such, otherwise you'll get instances where some of us will behave like kids. Staff at Durham may say there's more to life than money but when they're bending over for every finance and accounting firm on the planet inviting them to careers fairs I don't think they can justify that point any more.
    I can't remember who told me, it was a member of staff I think. It was a year or 2 ago so I can't remember, sorry. I think we're supposed to do dissertation work then, I know some second year humanities students had to write 1000 words and produce a research proposal in that time. Obviously that doesn't apply to first years though

    The registration dates (2 days) are always on the SPA website, so you could have just planned to spend the whole 2 days in Durham? A couple of my friends have worked for the last 3 weeks of term and have managed to come back in time but I don't know their travel arrangements. Lots of people miss it to work at Wimbledon and either get early registration permission or pay the £100 fine from their wages.

    I don't see any evidence of the university bending over backwards for finance firms/banks, they pay a significant amount to attend the careers fair and hold presentations in Durham and I'm not sure the university helps them too much as they use local hotels to host events. When I've been to the careers service, they've always had huge amounts of information about non-finance careers, and as I said I receive a lot of emails from the careers service advertising non-finance graduate schemes and presentations.
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    (Original post by River85)
    Thanks to the collegiate strucuture (my senior tutor specifically), I was almost forced to withdraw a few years ago and goodness knows where I'd be know, if I'd even still be alive. The collegiate support and experience completely failed me and I know it has failed other students. The blame doesn't just lie entirely with college but they must take much of the blame.

    I have never had much to do with my college during my number of years at Durham and don't feel I've really missed out on anything. My concern has been my departments at the wider university. I really resent the way the collegiate structure is forced on students, and the complete arrogance of the university in their assumption that it is an integral part of the student experience. To force the "collegiate experience" on financially disadvantaged students is completely disgraceful
    (Just to give a balanced view, I found that the collegiate structure was the only thing that kept me and a friend of mine in university, so it seems we've had opposite experiences.)
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    (Original post by doom)
    Thank you again for your thoughts.
    I have read the access agreement between Durham University and the Office for Fair Access (OFFA).
    I have also read all the governmental information about the national scholarship programme.
    the universities are allowed to implement any eligibility criteria they wish, within the specific goals of the national scholarship programme, which are to support students from under-represented backgrounds.
    Durham University in there OFFA agreement wrote that colegiate life was an integral part of student experience and that as such applying to live in a college would be compulsory for a student to be eligible to receive the Durham grant scheme.
    All we can hope as mature students is that Durham University agrees to revise its eligibility criteria.
    And this will happen if people talk to them about this situation.
    "No more than £1,000 of the overall NSP award is to be provided as a cash bursary" - http://www.bis.gov.uk/assets/biscore...ramme-year-one

    I think that's what the problem is.

    It also says that "Institutions will decide their own detailed eligibility criteria, based on targeting guidance and their own circumstances" so I assume Durham don't have to give you the grant money, but I really think you will get it as you clearly can't live in college.

    They want to encourage local students to live in college (which is a very fair reason, there are a lot of academic, peer-reviewed studies which show that students who live at home are less involved in the university and extra-curricular activities, make fewer friends at the university and have lower graduate employment rates, very probably due to the students not being involved in extra-curricular activities). But obviously that's not really relevant to you so I would very much hope that they can waive the requirement for you.

    Have you asked them? I'd advise you to ask the student recruitment & access department and your college's admissions team, there probably aren't enough mature students with family incomes under £25k for them to have a blanket policy so you'll need to contact them on an individual basis.
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    (Original post by River85)
    Thanks to the collegiate strucuture (my senior tutor specifically), I was almost forced to withdraw a few years ago and goodness knows where I'd be know, if I'd even still be alive. The collegiate support and experience completely failed me and I know it has failed other students. The blame doesn't just lie entirely with college but they must take much of the blame.

    I have never had much to do with my college during my number of years at Durham and don't feel I've really missed out on anything. My concern has been my departments at the wider university. I really resent the way the collegiate structure is forced on students, and the complete arrogance of the university in their assumption that it is an integral part of the student experience. To force the "collegiate experience" on financially disadvantaged students is completely disgraceful
    With respect, that is a bit like going to an agricultural college and complaining of cow pats.

    Durham is a collegiate university, therefore it wants people to partake in collegiate activities. You only have to look at collegiate universities such as Kent, York or Lancaster to see what happens when the university takes its eye off this particular ball.
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    (Original post by doom)
    Thank you for the reply.
    It is indeed a ridiculous rule especially for mature students.
    Unless I am able to move to a college with all my family (pets included) I will not be eligible to receive the grant.
    And for those that have to move to Durham, with their household an live there 12 months per year, college isn't an option.
    And I am not too sure if my college room mates will enjoy the crying and general mess of 3 children
    The situation has been revised by the University and I hope those that need grants will write to the Treasury to make them aware of this ordeal!
    It does seem to disproportionally affect low income students with children. It therefore overtly discriminates against a particular group; trapping them in a no win situation as the university has set a criteria but has failed to provide the means for these students to fulfil it.

    As the rule seems to be to apply to a college for accomodation, I would do just that, children, pets and all...

    Do people who 'live out' belong to a college. I assume that they do. For those people, if there are restrictions on receiving the money in cash then the remaining amount should be given at least as a fee reduction. What proportion of their own money are Durham putting in aside from the National Scholarship scheme? This sum cannot be subject to cash rules.

    It is a poor compromise Durham has come up with to be honest. I have extensively researched bursaries across universities now and Durham's rather startling claim that it offers one of the most generous bursaries available is nonsense.

    The £3000 pound is on a par with most other universities of similar standing and below the amounts allocated by Bristol, Oxford, Cambridge and many others. There is more on offer from Exeter or Kent to be honest. (However Durham is to be praised for not directing the cash to fee reduction as the government wished. If you do meet the criteria you do get the full benefit of the full bursary towards living costs and using the collegiate system as an excuse for doing this is fairly nifty political footwork.)

    Of course many are offering a division between cash, accomodation allowances and fee reductions in various ways. Some of the less well off universities are offering fairly basic bursaries as they take a higher proportion of eligible students already.

    Sorry to hear the changes may affect you.

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    [QUOTE=NDGAARONDI;36608559]

    As a graduate, and also a mature student, I've often found that Durham preaches about class in lectures and, yet, appears to be going against their teaching in day to day administration. It is no surprise to me that this has happened. They stop students of all socioeconomic backgrounds from taking up employment during the holidays to wait a few weeks to sign a few forms to register for modules for the following academic year just so they promote the virtues of living in college. So what are we supposed to do geniuses? Some of us hate university sport and take part in sport that is not catered for at university level. Go out clubbing in Klute and go out on the pull? Yeah? I can do that at home. How is registration seen as an academic commitment I don't know.

    I'm confused... what is this registration thing and how does Durham differ in this from other universities?

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    (Original post by nulli tertius)
    With respect, that is a bit like going to an agricultural college and complaining of cow pats.

    Durham is a collegiate university, therefore it wants people to partake in collegiate activities. You only have to look at collegiate universities such as Kent, York or Lancaster to see what happens when the university takes its eye off this particular ball.
    I understand that. The only reason I chose St Cuthbert's Society when I applied way back in 2002 is because I didn't want to live in for my frst year and wasn't bothered about the collegiate structure. So I was able to leave it. But it is a collegiate university and the university is determined to protect what it sees as an important part of its heritage.

    But I still don't feel it's right. There are other ways they can (and do) force the collegiate system on students, or try and keep the student a part of the college community, without affecting financially disadvantaged students.

    With the focus we already have on colleges, the support structure and social events available in colleges, inter-collegiate tournaments and student development sessions as well as the fact that many student chose to live in for two years, I think the collegiate structure will continue to remain an important part of the university for some time to come. My experience over the last few years isn't hasn't shown my the college structure is dying. I feel this is completely unnnecessary.

    I wouldn't mind if college accomodation was a reasonable price and not over twice what someone would pay for a decent house in somewhere like Gilesgate.

    (Original post by undergradstudent)
    (Just to give a balanced view, I found that the collegiate structure was the only thing that kept me and a friend of mine in university, so it seems we've had opposite experiences.)

    More people have positive experiences than negative, I admit. When I first joined TSR, part way through two years spent withdrawn, I frequently praised the support offered in colleges. My problem was that my (good) student support officer took sick leave for most of the 2006-2007 academic year and never properly returned, she took a job at Queen's Campus in 2007/2008. So my (then) Senior Tutor, who is incompetent, effectively took the place of my student support officer. My asisstant support officer, who was also good, was based at Parsons Field once we acquired that in 2007. So I was left under the care of my poor Senior Tutor. Had the support structure remained the same as it was when I first started I'm sure things would have worked out differently.

    But this doesn't detract that, as seems to be typical with Durham and universities in general (who like to decide what is "in the student's best interest" without any input from the student, a fully grown adult) they are being arrogant in their attitude that the collegiate structure is so crucial to every students' university experience.

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Updated: April 28, 2012
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