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    Hey guys, I'm choosing between Surrey and Southampton University to do either Computing and Information Technology (Surrey) and Information Technology in Organisations (Soton). I think I've done a fair amount of research on both; been to both University's Open and Applicant Days, talked to students/teachers there, looked at their websites etc. but I'm still unsure which University to choose as my Firm choice.

    I know that Southampton University is regarded one of the best Unis in the UK for their CS/IT department and in general, an "outstanding" and "world-leading" university. But having been to their Applicant Day, I noticed that they don't regard industrial year outs/placement years as significant, since they don't offer it as part of their IT course, whereas Surrey really puts an emphasis on it and recommend it to their students. I'm really keen on a year out and I would want to go to a University where they really support this. Soton holds "Careers Fairs" where I think the students showcase their work and have a chance of being "scouted" by the visiting companies. There's also the choice of doing Summer Interships, but it's not really the same thing. Surrey, on the other hand, is a great university too and I liked the sound of the course - slightly better than Soton's - as I'm particularly interested to learn some Computing too.

    But from looking around, especially in the Student Room, Soton seems to be the better University overall. So, I guess I just want second opinion on this since the two universities are head to head for me.

    Thanks in advance.
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    I was in the exact same situation with exact courses you stated

    who one did you pick in the end?
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    Sounds to me like you'd be happier studying at Surrey, although Southampton is a more respected university Surrey is high up the league tables too...
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    (Original post by iggyDash)
    I was in the exact same situation with exact courses you stated

    who one did you pick in the end?
    I picked Southampton in the end. Initially I was really torn, but in the end, I weighed the pros and cons and Southampton seemed like the better choice. How about you?

    In the end, my final choice was actually Brunel University in Uxbridge and Southampton as my Insurance, although the two have the same grade requirements (AAA). The course at Brunel is Computer Science (w/ Digital Graphics and Games Development) with a year out and IT at Southampton. I was really impressed with Brunel when I went to visit and the course is perfect for me.
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    (Original post by Echelone)
    I picked Southampton in the end. Initially I was really torn, but in the end, I weighed the pros and cons and Southampton seemed like the better choice. How about you?

    In the end, my final choice was actually Brunel University in Uxbridge and Southampton as my Insurance, although the two have the same grade requirements (AAA). The course at Brunel is Computer Science (w/ Digital Graphics and Games Development) with a year out and IT at Southampton. I was really impressed with Brunel when I went to visit and the course is perfect for me.

    Firmed surrey as i thought the course was for me and had good career prospects. so did southampton really but had to make a decision.

    What are your pros and cons may i ask?


    Ans that course sounds interesting hope your results go well.
    on that note
    What subjects you doing now ?
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    Well i'm just coming to the end of my first year of the computer science course at Surrey Uni now, and I would really recommend it. But in the end of the day, both universities are strong uni's, and if you're good, you'll be able to do whatever you like in the future no matter which you go to. It would just be about which you had a better feel for. Any questions about Computer Science/Computing IT at Surrey, i'm happy to help
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    (Original post by Just Josh)
    Well i'm just coming to the end of my first year of the computer science course at Surrey Uni now, and I would really recommend it. But in the end of the day, both universities are strong uni's, and if you're good, you'll be able to do whatever you like in the future no matter which you go to. It would just be about which you had a better feel for. Any questions about Computer Science/Computing IT at Surrey, i'm happy to help
    what are the career prospects what does studying c imputing&it what companies do they generally go to (recent graduates)
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    (Original post by iggyDash)
    what are the career prospects what does studying c imputing&it what companies do they generally go to (recent graduates)
    Career prospects are basically about as good as they get, if you do well, you'll be in demand. I have an interview for a placement year at an investment bank on monday for example. Computer science probably has better prospects than CIT but its still pretty good. People go into all kinds of things from IBM, Microsoft, to EA Games to Banking, Consulting. So pretty much whatever you want to do you can do. It's a hard course though, incredibly hard. A lot harder than most other universities, looking at some other universities syllabuses and exams. We have been pushed to out limit this year and the workload has been insane. Don't listen to people who say that first year at uni is a doss, because this year has made A levels look measly in comparison. But you will learn a lot, the teaching is mostly good, and overall it's been a good year
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    (Original post by Just Josh)
    Any questions about Computer Science/Computing IT at Surrey, i'm happy to help
    Posted from TSR Mobile
    Well i have a question for yah since I firmed Surrey starting at Sept for a sandwhich course in CompSci! Do I need to have any specific background in programming before starting the course? Is it a lot math based course? Because you said its a really hard course im starting to panick cuz the only background i have its some Visual Basic and Pascal..Do you reccomend studying anything specific before starting? Im I going to have a lot of free time? because im planning to join Surrey sport park for some sports and since im a party animal I cannot miss a lot of nights out...

    thanks in advance!
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    (Original post by illusiveX)
    Posted from TSR Mobile
    Well i have a question for yah since I firmed Surrey starting at Sept for a sandwhich course in CompSci! Do I need to have any specific background in programming before starting the course? Is it a lot math based course? Because you said its a really hard course im starting to panick cuz the only background i have its some Visual Basic and Pascal..Do you reccomend studying anything specific before starting? Im I going to have a lot of free time? because im planning to join Surrey sport park for some sports and since im a party animal I cannot miss a lot of nights out...

    thanks in advance!
    I guess whether it's "hard" is opinion. Computer science is one of those subjects which you either get it, or you don't. Not as much middle ground as there is with subjects like history or something. I came into the course without any background knowledge in computer science, so i found it harder than others. But then there are the whizz kids who could probably program a google when they were 5 if they wanted to. And then there are those who dropped out or are doing poorly. Programming experience helps, but you will get taught everything you need to know, and you will never be assessed on anything that hasn't been taught. It starts out with the very basics. The programming lecturer in the first semester is one of the best teachers i've ever had, and you'll really like him. There's nothing that you really have to do before you start, but I would recommend brushing up on your maths if you haven't done an A level in it though, just so you understand concepts covered in lecture. If you have done the A level, then you'll do fine. It's more those with a BTEC in like IT or something who struggle with the course. You'll still have loads of time for going out and using the sports center if you manage your workload well. If you want to do some pre-reading over the summer, I would recommend a book called "head first java", which is a fun way to get into the whole object oriented programming stuff, which would be good for you as you have some experience already.
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    (Original post by Just Josh)
    Career prospects are basically about as good as they get, if you do well, you'll be in demand. I have an interview for a placement year at an investment bank on monday for example. Computer science probably has better prospects than CIT but its still pretty good. People go into all kinds of things from IBM, Microsoft, to EA Games to Banking, Consulting. So pretty much whatever you want to do you can do. It's a hard course though, incredibly hard. A lot harder than most other universities, looking at some other universities syllabuses and exams. We have been pushed to out limit this year and the workload has been insane. Don't listen to people who say that first year at uni is a doss, because this year has made A levels look measly in comparison. But you will learn a lot, the teaching is mostly good, and overall it's been a good year
    oh ok
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    (Original post by Just Josh)
    I guess whether it's "hard" is opinion. Computer science is one of those subjects which you either get it, or you don't. Not as much middle ground as there is with subjects like history or something. I came into the course without any background knowledge in computer science, so i found it harder than others. But then there are the whizz kids who could probably program a google when they were 5 if they wanted to. And then there are those who dropped out or are doing poorly. Programming experience helps, but you will get taught everything you need to know, and you will never be assessed on anything that hasn't been taught. It starts out with the very basics. The programming lecturer in the first semester is one of the best teachers i've ever had, and you'll really like him. There's nothing that you really have to do before you start, but I would recommend brushing up on your maths if you haven't done an A level in it though, just so you understand concepts covered in lecture. If you have done the A level, then you'll do fine. It's more those with a BTEC in like IT or something who struggle with the course. You'll still have loads of time for going out and using the sports center if you manage your workload well. If you want to do some pre-reading over the summer, I would recommend a book called "head first java", which is a fun way to get into the whole object oriented programming stuff, which would be good for you as you have some experience already.
    Hi there, I was wondering if you give me some idea about the course itself at surrey.
    I am hoping to start CIT course at surrey this sept. I am currently doing BTEC in IT and on the tracks to getting D*D*D*. I have done AS maths but didnt get good grades.
    Do you think i will be falling out/be at a lower stage than others?
    Does CIT and CS course have a huge gap in prospectus wise?
    (i mean can you apply and get placements with companies like IBM, Google etc if you are doing a CIT course or would you suggest CS?)
    Is there anything that will help me get on track - which I could do over the summer holidays?
    Any advice or dos and donts, once semester and lectures have started?
    Also, what are the assessment methods like? are the written exams really tough or do they only cover what you have been taught? also how hard are practical exams?
    Do you get help if you are not so good at programming ?

    Thank you
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    (Original post by strangerme)
    Hi there, I was wondering if you give me some idea about the course itself at surrey.
    I am hoping to start CIT course at surrey this sept. I am currently doing BTEC in IT and on the tracks to getting D*D*D*. I have done AS maths but didnt get good grades.
    Do you think i will be falling out/be at a lower stage than others?
    Does CIT and CS course have a huge gap in prospectus wise?
    (i mean can you apply and get placements with companies like IBM, Google etc if you are doing a CIT course or would you suggest CS?)
    Is there anything that will help me get on track - which I could do over the summer holidays?
    Any advice or dos and donts, once semester and lectures have started?
    Also, what are the assessment methods like? are the written exams really tough or do they only cover what you have been taught? also how hard are practical exams?
    Do you get help if you are not so good at programming ?

    Thank you
    Hey, sorry for not replying before, I don't really use this website anymore. You will most likely be fine, really. I'm just finishing second year now and the maths intensive modules that i've done (Advanced Algorithms and 3D Computer Graphics) are only for the vanilla computer science course. You will do something else, I think business law or financial accounting or something. If i'm honest, if I had my time again, I would have gone for the CIT course. Mostly because people tend to get better grades in them than in the CS specific modules, and also, the CS specific modules really suck. (Advanced Algorithms, 3D graphics, Computer Logic). I guess first year CS only students do a module in Android Development, which is also what we do for second year software engineering project. So those who did CS have a strong advantage with that. But apart from that, I can't think of any other issues and android is fairly easy to pick up.

    As for what's employable, it's you that makes you employable and how you perform at the interview. I swear half the interviews i've been to, they don't even know what degree i'm doing, it was just a way of me getting filtered to get to the interview. I'm doing a software development placement at IBM, starting in a month or so. I'm pure CS, but many of the other people at the assessment centre were doing really bizarre things like operational management or media computing and even stuff not related to computing at all, all going for software development. I've also been to many other assessment centres, which I didn't get the jobs, where people not doing pure CS got the jobs and I didn't. So I really don't think it makes a difference. People in my year on both sides are getting good placements.

    If you want to get ahead before you start (which there's no real reason to, if i'm honest), I would buy a book called "Head First Java". It's a simple introduction to Object Oriented programming, which can be a bit overwhelming when you first start. There are many guides out there who teach Java as a language but expect people to already know how to program. This is different as it's for complete beginners. It was a life saver for me (i did computing to AS level but got a D and dropped it), so had barely programmed before, and definitely not in object oriented. But apart from that, first semester first year modules in first year are more than manageable.

    My main advice would be just to attend, something I should really have done more. It really does help, especially in first year.

    There are 4 main ways of assessment I suppose. Written exams, practical exams, written coursework and practical coursework. In the first year programming, the exam is fairly easy, as you don't really have to think for yourself. It's more a case of "define this variable" "write a method that does this" "inherit the methods from this class". Whereas after first semester, you have to think for yourself. My experience here is that there is a lack of balance between modules - some modules are easy, some are ridiculously hard. Some have lecturers who give 80+ percent for courseworks. Other lecturers you have to battle to get 50 out of. I guess that's just uni education for you - every lecturer writes their own course, their own exams, and mark it in their own ways. As for how hard practical exams are, you should be fine. The one I did today (3D graphics) was probably my hardest practical exam so far - but that's CS only. You'll be prepared well for the practical exams.

    There's loads of support for first years struggling with programming. When I was in first year, they ran extra classes specifically for people who were struggling with the programming. The lecturer I have had for that module was awesome, but he's now left. I think he's now replaced by Helen, who is also really good.

    Feel free to mail me if you want to know anything more,

    All the best, hope you make the grades.
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    (Original post by Just Josh)
    Hey, sorry for not replying before, I don't really use this website anymore. You will most likely be fine, really. I'm just finishing second year now and the maths intensive modules that i've done (Advanced Algorithms and 3D Computer Graphics) are only for the vanilla computer science course. You will do something else, I think business law or financial accounting or something. If i'm honest, if I had my time again, I would have gone for the CIT course. Mostly because people tend to get better grades in them than in the CS specific modules, and also, the CS specific modules really suck. (Advanced Algorithms, 3D graphics, Computer Logic). I guess first year CS only students do a module in Android Development, which is also what we do for second year software engineering project. So those who did CS have a strong advantage with that. But apart from that, I can't think of any other issues and android is fairly easy to pick up.

    As for what's employable, it's you that makes you employable and how you perform at the interview. I swear half the interviews i've been to, they don't even know what degree i'm doing, it was just a way of me getting filtered to get to the interview. I'm doing a software development placement at IBM, starting in a month or so. I'm pure CS, but many of the other people at the assessment centre were doing really bizarre things like operational management or media computing and even stuff not related to computing at all, all going for software development. I've also been to many other assessment centres, which I didn't get the jobs, where people not doing pure CS got the jobs and I didn't. So I really don't think it makes a difference. People in my year on both sides are getting good placements.

    If you want to get ahead before you start (which there's no real reason to, if i'm honest), I would buy a book called "Head First Java". It's a simple introduction to Object Oriented programming, which can be a bit overwhelming when you first start. There are many guides out there who teach Java as a language but expect people to already know how to program. This is different as it's for complete beginners. It was a life saver for me (i did computing to AS level but got a D and dropped it), so had barely programmed before, and definitely not in object oriented. But apart from that, first semester first year modules in first year are more than manageable.

    My main advice would be just to attend, something I should really have done more. It really does help, especially in first year.

    There are 4 main ways of assessment I suppose. Written exams, practical exams, written coursework and practical coursework. In the first year programming, the exam is fairly easy, as you don't really have to think for yourself. It's more a case of "define this variable" "write a method that does this" "inherit the methods from this class". Whereas after first semester, you have to think for yourself. My experience here is that there is a lack of balance between modules - some modules are easy, some are ridiculously hard. Some have lecturers who give 80+ percent for courseworks. Other lecturers you have to battle to get 50 out of. I guess that's just uni education for you - every lecturer writes their own course, their own exams, and mark it in their own ways. As for how hard practical exams are, you should be fine. The one I did today (3D graphics) was probably my hardest practical exam so far - but that's CS only. You'll be prepared well for the practical exams.

    There's loads of support for first years struggling with programming. When I was in first year, they ran extra classes specifically for people who were struggling with the programming. The lecturer I have had for that module was awesome, but he's now left. I think he's now replaced by Helen, who is also really good.

    Feel free to mail me if you want to know anything more,

    All the best, hope you make the grades.
    Hi,
    thank you soo much for the detailed reply and for your time in replying to me!

    I cannot say how much I am relieved to hear about the information on career, exams and extra help. I know you will have to work hard in order to get success! I have recently seen the guardian 2015 league tables and Surrey is 6th in the UK and in the top 20 for CS and IT. I had an offer from Kings College and I am glad I have not firmed them, as they are 40th place!
    I hope I will be able to meet you, once I get there.
    I am not just focusing on getting those distinctions! I will take the advice on board with doing starting to learn and do a bit of Java as I understand it will be helpful. Just one thing, would there be people in the course who also hasnt done any programming or would most have a decent amount of understanding?

    I also read on one of the sheets that were given to me on the interview day about an exam during the induction week on programming. What is that like? I know its quite back, but ... anything to be prepared for?
    Thank you and hope you have a wonderful placement. I shall keep in touch with you to see how it goes...
    Take care,
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    (Original post by strangerme)
    Hi,
    thank you soo much for the detailed reply and for your time in replying to me!

    I cannot say how much I am relieved to hear about the information on career, exams and extra help. I know you will have to work hard in order to get success! I have recently seen the guardian 2015 league tables and Surrey is 6th in the UK and in the top 20 for CS and IT. I had an offer from Kings College and I am glad I have not firmed them, as they are 40th place!
    I hope I will be able to meet you, once I get there.
    I am not just focusing on getting those distinctions! I will take the advice on board with doing starting to learn and do a bit of Java as I understand it will be helpful. Just one thing, would there be people in the course who also hasnt done any programming or would most have a decent amount of understanding?

    I also read on one of the sheets that were given to me on the interview day about an exam during the induction week on programming. What is that like? I know its quite back, but ... anything to be prepared for?
    Thank you and hope you have a wonderful placement. I shall keep in touch with you to see how it goes...
    Take care,
    Hey again,

    Yea, not really seeing how we're 6th to be honest haha but we aren't going to complain. I suppose it's just what you want from a university experience. A central London, non campus university is a whole different world and experience from a quiet campus university like Surrey. You'll find things more laid back, supported, safe and peaceful here. But Guildford is definitely not the most exciting place in the world, so we fall behind on that. It depends who you are. My ex girlfriend goes to KCL and I would chose this over her experience any day. I would hate to live in London. Furthermore, if you're living on campus, lectures are never more than 8 minutes away. In London, even in KCL accommodation, you could be travelling 30 minutes + across busy London to get to a lecture. This makes such a difference. I really wouldn't swap my university for anywhere else, not even oxbridge. Also I know the course is much better here than KCL. Student experience is the most important thing, and we always come near top in that.

    Two interesting ratings to compare:

    http://www.whatuni.com/degrees/revie...ntreviews.html

    http://www.whatuni.com/degrees/revie...ntreviews.html

    Anyway, you'll find a whole range of people on your course. You'll have people like you and me who start not knowing anything. Which is fine, you will still do well, you are never assessed on anything that you haven't fully covered in lecture or labs. You'll find those coming in with A's in Maths, Further Maths and Computing A levels. You'll also find mature students - those coming in from industry who haven't done a degree and are looking to "rank up" in career if you like. They'll usually nail the first year, but by second year, you'll all be on similar levels. We've lost about 25% of my intake since starting first year. Most left within the first six months. I think some people just find they don't like programming or thought compsci was something else. Or they had personal issues with uni life. That's the only reason I would recommend doing some programming beforehand - so it doesn't take you by surprise. But you said you're doing a BTEC in IT so you should know a fair amount anyway.

    Oh and that exam thing - it's hardly an exam haha. It's just an online multiple choice 30 minute test, to see whether they want to put you in those extra help classes I was talking about. But even if you do well in it, you can still go. They just make it compulsory for those who don't do well. (which by the way is fine, I think i got like 10% lol, as I simply hadn't programmed before, so how was I meant to do well?) it's certainly nothing worth even thinking about.

    Thanks for your kind wishes and all the best
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    (Original post by Just Josh)
    Hey again,

    Yea, not really seeing how we're 6th to be honest haha but we aren't going to complain. I suppose it's just what you want from a university experience. A central London, non campus university is a whole different world and experience from a quiet campus university like Surrey. You'll find things more laid back, supported, safe and peaceful here. But Guildford is definitely not the most exciting place in the world, so we fall behind on that. It depends who you are. My ex girlfriend goes to KCL and I would chose this over her experience any day. I would hate to live in London. Furthermore, if you're living on campus, lectures are never more than 8 minutes away. In London, even in KCL accommodation, you could be travelling 30 minutes + across busy London to get to a lecture. This makes such a difference. I really wouldn't swap my university for anywhere else, not even oxbridge. Also I know the course is much better here than KCL. Student experience is the most important thing, and we always come near top in that.

    Two interesting ratings to compare:

    http://www.whatuni.com/degrees/revie...ntreviews.html

    http://www.whatuni.com/degrees/revie...ntreviews.html

    Anyway, you'll find a whole range of people on your course. You'll have people like you and me who start not knowing anything. Which is fine, you will still do well, you are never assessed on anything that you haven't fully covered in lecture or labs. You'll find those coming in with A's in Maths, Further Maths and Computing A levels. You'll also find mature students - those coming in from industry who haven't done a degree and are looking to "rank up" in career if you like. They'll usually nail the first year, but by second year, you'll all be on similar levels. We've lost about 25% of my intake since starting first year. Most left within the first six months. I think some people just find they don't like programming or thought compsci was something else. Or they had personal issues with uni life. That's the only reason I would recommend doing some programming beforehand - so it doesn't take you by surprise. But you said you're doing a BTEC in IT so you should know a fair amount anyway.

    Oh and that exam thing - it's hardly an exam haha. It's just an online multiple choice 30 minute test, to see whether they want to put you in those extra help classes I was talking about. But even if you do well in it, you can still go. They just make it compulsory for those who don't do well. (which by the way is fine, I think i got like 10% lol, as I simply hadn't programmed before, so how was I meant to do well?) it's certainly nothing worth even thinking about.

    Thanks for your kind wishes and all the best
    Hi,
    I got my results - D* D* D* which is 420 points. So it has been confirmed that I will be coming to Surrey this summer! Yay!

    I havent started on any programming but shall start looking into some soon. Hope you are having a good summer and hope to see you there
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    (Original post by strangerme)
    Hi,
    I got my results - D* D* D* which is 420 points. So it has been confirmed that I will be coming to Surrey this summer! Yay!

    I havent started on any programming but shall start looking into some soon. Hope you are having a good summer and hope to see you there
    Im in the same boat as you doing CIT at surrey and did btec, glad I won't be the only one that hasn't done major amounts of programming!
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    (Original post by Rachel889)
    Im in the same boat as you doing CIT at surrey and did btec, glad I won't be the only one that hasn't done major amounts of programming!
    hi, i am soo glad that there will be at least one girl in the class!
    haha i know same here! i have been worried that i will be kind of the only one without any programming knowledge! you are definitely going to be doing CIT?
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    Me too!! Yea I've met quite. Few people doing CIT that haven't done a lot of programming, yep I've sent you a private message
 
 
 
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