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    I'm trying to get a feel for how good maths is at various unis. Could any maths students please give me their opinions on the maths course at Lancaster? How are the lecturers? Do you get enough support etc? Also, does anyone know whether there are interviews for maths? I can't seem to find any mention of them on the website.

    Thanks a lot.
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    (Original post by SuperNinja09)
    I'm trying to get a feel for how good maths is at various unis. Could any maths students please give me their opinions on the maths course at Lancaster? How are the lecturers? Do you get enough support etc? Also, does anyone know whether there are interviews for maths? I can't seem to find any mention of them on the website.

    Thanks a lot.
    I'm currently a first year student doing Maths & Stats (although for the first year every maths course is identical) so I feel qualified to answer your questions. There may be a 2nd or 3rd year maths student here who can give you an opinion on more lecturers than I can but I havn't come across any on here yet.

    Personally, I love it, both the University and the course, but anyway, I'll go through your questions now.

    How are the lecturers? - Well I've only had 3 different lecturers so far. Gordon Blower, Niels Laustsen and Alexander Belton. All of them are good, Gordon is probably the worst of the three, not due to a lack of knowledge, just he seems the least comfortable during the lectures whereas the other two just engage the students more and seem better with people and so more suited to lecturing, but Gordon isn't bad by any stretch of the imagination.

    Do you get enough support? - If you need it, you will find somebody to help you. The only support time you have scheduled are your workshops, each module will have a 1 hour workshop each week, and these are basically just a chance to work through the questions you have been set for the week, and you have your own personal tutor there who you can ask for help (they are mostly postgrad students but the lecturers do take a couple of the groups). Outside of that each of your lecturers has their own office hours. Essentially these office hours are the times during the week where if you go to their office they will be there, and they will only be helping people doing your module, although you do get their email addresses and if you send them an email asking for help they will let you know when they will be in their office and available to help you. You can also email your workshop tutor to get help. Another useful thing is the Maths Cafe. This is run by the Maths And Stats Society, and is a 2 hour session every monday where people drop by to get on with some work in a group. When you turn up there will always be some people doing your module so you can get help from them, there are usually a few of the postgrad tutors around, and the 2nd and 3rd year students are usually quite happy to help if you ask them politely!

    Do they do interviews? - As far as I'm aware they don't.

    Now, time for my personal opinion of the course.

    I love it. I think that there is a good amount of contact time each week (lectures & workshops) so that you learn plenty but you don't get overloaded, after all, everybody wants their first year to be fairly relaxed. The lecturers are all good (so far anyway!), the lecture theaters they use are comfortable, and more importantly at this time of the year, warm!
    I also like the fact that they are really flexible about your course & modules after the first year. For the first year everybody sits the same modules, but you only do 2 modules at a time. This means that you have to do a minor subject, which will fill in the 3rd module throughout the whole year, as you do 15 modules in your first year, 10 maths & 5 from your minor. Essentially you can pick any subject the university does as your minor, and then you can choose whether to keep it up or drop it for your 2nd and 3rd years. I have also been told by the head of admissions that what they do with new students is place everybody on the 4 year masters course, however if you don't wish to do the 4 year course or your results over the first 2 years are not good enough for it then they reduce it to 3 years. Your actual course title is open to change as well, because you get a huge choice of module in the second year you can basically pick any modules at all and they are happy to change the title of your degree to suit that. So I am doing Maths & Stats, but if next year I picked all pure maths modules then they would have no problem changing my course just to Maths.

    So far the only problem I have found with the course is that I have too many 9 and 10am lectures, but that will change each year, my year just go unlucky with the scheduling :P

    And oh my god I wrote too much there. Off to be now, got a lecture in 7 hours!
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    (Original post by mackemforever)
    Gordon Blower, Niels Laustsen and Alexander Belton. .

    Do you get enough support? - If you need it, you will find somebody to help you.
    Do they do interviews? - As far as I'm aware they don't.
    Im going to give a different opinion entirely. I am now a second year Philosophy student, but came to the University to do Mathetmatics. I did philosophy as my minor and loved it. But Maths was a different story entirely.

    The lecturers (I found) were rather patronizing, especially Niels Lausten. Gordon Blower was probably the nicest of them all, or perhaps Alison. But I was having a lot of personal issues, and the department were not helpful at all compared to the Philosophy department.

    I didnt like the way the course was set out with examinations every 5 weeks, (not including the compulsory LABs) weekly assessments and end of year. Compared to people on other courses, the workload was ridiculiusly high!

    I dropped it and picked up my minor as my degree. But then again, I may have hated maths anywhere I went. Im not the only person I know to do this though. Another girl did the same and picked up Sociology instead.
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    (Original post by ponpon14)
    Im going to give a different opinion entirely. I am now a second year Philosophy student, but came to the University to do Mathetmatics. I did philosophy as my minor and loved it. But Maths was a different story entirely.

    The lecturers (I found) were rather patronizing, especially Niels Lausten. Gordon Blower was probably the nicest of them all, or perhaps Alison. But I was having a lot of personal issues, and the department were not helpful at all compared to the Philosophy department.

    I didnt like the way the course was set out with examinations every 5 weeks, (not including the compulsory LABs) weekly assessments and end of year. Compared to people on other courses, the workload was ridiculiusly high!

    I dropped it and picked up my minor as my degree. But then again, I may have hated maths anywhere I went. Im not the only person I know to do this though. Another girl did the same and picked up Sociology instead.
    Really? I havn't found that at all, and the reason for that is because it isn't.

    You have to do 2 worksheets per week. Each sheet is around 12 questions, so you've got to do around 24 questions per week.

    That isn't a lot. Even if it takes you 20 minutes to do each question its only just over 1 hour each day, which is nothing.
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    (Original post by mackemforever)
    Really? I havn't found that at all, and the reason for that is because it isn't.

    You have to do 2 worksheets per week. Each sheet is around 12 questions, so you've got to do around 24 questions per week.

    That isn't a lot. Even if it takes you 20 minutes to do each question its only just over 1 hour each day, which is nothing.
    Hmm In comparison to others it feels like more because the contact time is so much higher too. Its double the others, and in comparison to the amount of work they require for first year, it feels like a lot more.

    I think I just found the difference between Alevel and degree odd. I really enjoyes maths at school, but it was so different here, I just couldnt enjoy it anymore. To do well at something like this, it helps if you enjoy it. Thats why im doing Phil now.
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    If I'm honest, I think ponpon's crazy. If you compare Maths to any other science course here, it's only about 2/3 the contact time, and there's next to no coursework to do, in 3rd year we've got 2 questions a week for each module, and even in the worst cases they don't take more than 2 hours.

    As for the questions, the lecturers are good. Most keep to the same sort of lecture structure, Martin Lindsay aside who likes people interacting more, it works at times, but often there's a bit too long with everyone sat around silent because they don't want to talk and he doesn't want to move on without. For most people, Daniel Elton is the favourite though, not sure why really, he's just a good lecturer. For support, I haven't heard of a lecturer yet that isn't happy to sit in their office and help through things that went over your head in lectures, and the post grads tend to be happy to help out too.
    As for interviews, I haven't heard of anyone that had to have an interview to come here, on any course let alone Maths.

    (Original post by mackemforever)
    I have also been told by the head of admissions that what they do with new students is place everybody on the 4 year masters course, however if you don't wish to do the 4 year course or your results over the first 2 years are not good enough for it then they reduce it to 3 years. Your actual course title is open to change as well, because you get a huge choice of module in the second year you can basically pick any modules at all and they are happy to change the title of your degree to suit that. So I am doing Maths & Stats, but if next year I picked all pure maths modules then they would have no problem changing my course just to Maths.

    So far the only problem I have found with the course is that I have too many 9 and 10am lectures, but that will change each year, my year just go unlucky with the scheduling :P
    As for this, everybody is given the chance to be on 4 years, if you get over 55 after second year, you are offered the 4 year course, it's not automatic.
    The choice of modules is third year too, not second year. It's a set course for first and second to make sure everyone has a proper basis to choose modules off of later on, because everything has quite a few prerequisites. Lancaster structures everything they do around keeping your choices as open as possible for as long as possible.
    The title of your degree is deemed on how you choose your modules. On a 4 year course, less than 4 stats modules and you leave with a Mathematics degree. Between 4 and 8 gives you a Mathematics and Statistics degree. More than 8 stats modules and you leave with a Statistics degree. I imagine for the BSc it's half the numbers probably.

    And unfortunately, the 9/10am thing doesn't really change. I don't know why, but someone in timetabling seems to think Maths students are great at mornings. Couldn't be more wrong!
 
 
 
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