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    Hi all,

    I'm sure you've seen this question a lot but being an overseas student, I cannot personally inspect every part of life at Royal Holloway or its surrounding area so if anyone could give me any information about the university - whether they've visited, are studying at or have graduated from it. Anything on accommodation, the campus, the courses, the professors, the surrounding area and the societies?
    Opinions are fine but the most important thing is I want to hear both sides because a marketing agent can only tell you so much, right?

    Many thanks!
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    Speaking in my utterly amateur capacity as a 2nd-year History student, it's mostly pretty good. With regards to teaching, I can't really comment without knowing what course you're doing, and if it isn't history I'll know nothing .

    Accomodation is generally pretty good, I feel. It's very annoying if you're in Kingswood and are somewhat isolated, being a 20 minute walk away from campus, but 90% of people will get into halls on-campus. Almost all of the halls are perfectly modern, and the only ones that aren't very much (Founder's) have the added advantage of A) being close to cheap food and B) you get to live in a Victorian chateau . Private housing is pretty easy to sort out for your 2nd year now that the SU has a

    The campus is definitely good, primarily, again, because of the giant Victorian chateau. Most of the other buildings are your standard 1960s fare, but nothing too bad. The food is alright, nothing special. The Hub is very overpriced (or at least that was the impression I got the one time I've been there), but Founders and Kingswood and Crosslands all provide pretty good food.

    The surrounding area is... mixed. It's in a pretty part of the world, with lots of nice countryside. However, the nearby town of Egham is incredibly depressing. It's a tiny, grey little town with nothing of any interest in it. One thing which I think turns some students off is the fact that there is little nightlife in the area- that doesn't matter to a lot of people (myself included), but some people tend to mind. Still, there are plenty of pubs and bars on and off campus. The nearest club is in Windor (but, again, having no interest in that kind of thing, I don't really know).

    I don't know what course you'd be wanting to do, but from my experience with History the teaching is, on the whole, excellent. Most of the teachers have been perfectly helpful and friendly, and I've found the lectures and seminars to be very interesting. Though, having naturally not gone to any other uni, I have no frame of reference to other universities. Specifically with regards to History, the variety of different modules has been particularly impressive- compared to the other Unis I applied to (Exeter, UEA, York, Warwick), there is far more focus on non-English/Western European history. I'm currently studying Byzantine and Silk Road/Mongol history, which is fascinating.

    Societies are pretty good. They are all OK, but the range is a little patchy. You get really strange ones like "Humans Vs Zombies", while lacking an Archery club or a Russian society. I'm guessing you're Italian from your username, and there is an Italian society, but I know nothing about it. A particular strength with regards to extra curricular stuff is the choir, which is absolutely fantastic (their performance of Arvo Part's Magnificat recorded a few years ago is hauntingly beautiful).

    I should point out that it's in a very expensive part of the country (I think the 2nd most expensive part of the country outside of London).

    Anyway, that's about as unbiased a view as I can give. I do love it here though, so as you say, you might want to get another opinion that isn't quite so enamoured with the place.
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    (Original post by Tufto)
    Speaking in my utterly amateur capacity as a 2nd-year History student, it's mostly pretty good. With regards to teaching, I can't really comment without knowing what course you're doing, and if it isn't history I'll know nothing .

    Accomodation is generally pretty good, I feel. It's very annoying if you're in Kingswood and are somewhat isolated, being a 20 minute walk away from campus, but 90% of people will get into halls on-campus. Almost all of the halls are perfectly modern, and the only ones that aren't very much (Founder's) have the added advantage of A) being close to cheap food and B) you get to live in a Victorian chateau . Private housing is pretty easy to sort out for your 2nd year now that the SU has a

    The campus is definitely good, primarily, again, because of the giant Victorian chateau. Most of the other buildings are your standard 1960s fare, but nothing too bad. The food is alright, nothing special. The Hub is very overpriced (or at least that was the impression I got the one time I've been there), but Founders and Kingswood and Crosslands all provide pretty good food.

    The surrounding area is... mixed. It's in a pretty part of the world, with lots of nice countryside. However, the nearby town of Egham is incredibly depressing. It's a tiny, grey little town with nothing of any interest in it. One thing which I think turns some students off is the fact that there is little nightlife in the area- that doesn't matter to a lot of people (myself included), but some people tend to mind. Still, there are plenty of pubs and bars on and off campus. The nearest club is in Windor (but, again, having no interest in that kind of thing, I don't really know).

    I don't know what course you'd be wanting to do, but from my experience with History the teaching is, on the whole, excellent. Most of the teachers have been perfectly helpful and friendly, and I've found the lectures and seminars to be very interesting. Though, having naturally not gone to any other uni, I have no frame of reference to other universities. Specifically with regards to History, the variety of different modules has been particularly impressive- compared to the other Unis I applied to (Exeter, UEA, York, Warwick), there is far more focus on non-English/Western European history. I'm currently studying Byzantine and Silk Road/Mongol history, which is fascinating.

    Societies are pretty good. They are all OK, but the range is a little patchy. You get really strange ones like "Humans Vs Zombies", while lacking an Archery club or a Russian society. I'm guessing you're Italian from your username, and there is an Italian society, but I know nothing about it. A particular strength with regards to extra curricular stuff is the choir, which is absolutely fantastic (their performance of Arvo Part's Magnificat recorded a few years ago is hauntingly beautiful).

    I should point out that it's in a very expensive part of the country (I think the 2nd most expensive part of the country outside of London).

    Anyway, that's about as unbiased a view as I can give. I do love it here though, so as you say, you might want to get another opinion that isn't quite so enamoured with the place.
    Firstly, thanks for replying, you were such a help! You pulled up some really important things to keep in mind and yes, I'm half Italian The societies and money issues particularly peeve me - I need to economise and I love taking part in societies so :/ Oh wells, the university sounds good though, regarding learning, which is the main point.
    Many thanks!
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    (Original post by Giulia Z)
    Firstly, thanks for replying, you were such a help! You pulled up some really important things to keep in mind and yes, I'm half Italian The societies and money issues particularly peeve me - I need to economise and I love taking part in societies so :/ Oh wells, the university sounds good though, regarding learning, which is the main point.
    Many thanks!
    Glad to help. The full societies list is here, by the way: http://www.su.rhul.ac.uk/societies/

    The only ones outside the SU are the Conservative and Socialist societies, I think.
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    For me, Royal Holloway is as fun as you make it. My idea of fun does revolve much around clubs, but I do this during the break periods; during the year I study, alone or with friends. The university is very small (slightly under 9000 students). This has the benefit that you literally will know, or at least recognise, half the population at any given moment. The community feel is something that other universities lack. Further, because the nightlife is essentially centered upon the Student Union and Medicine, it is easy to meet people from other courses quite easily.

    Academically it's quite good, and you can be as academic as you want. The area is expensive, and everything is London prices. This being said, Royal Holloway is not in London (as you prob know by now) but easily 40 min away by train (an extra 30min if you're walking from Founder's to Egham Station). Lastly, most sports play on campus--that's something not many universities close to (or in) the capital offer!
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    Thanks for that too! Argh, the prices are bothering me the most - I really need to live cheaply...
    Perhaps I'll enjoy the small atmosphere because my school is super small and I've never really been somewhere where I don't recognise a face. The sports on campus is a plus and the university grounds look lovely, especially Founder's Building.

    I'm planning on a biology course so I'm supposed to be studying at the Bourne Building? Can anyone tell me anything about that, or anything more about the uni?
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    I think it is possible to live cheaply at Royal Holloway--personally I think ALL the catering outlets are expensive, and only overpriced because their main customers are students. This being said, if you live in catered halls, then the food isn't all that expensive in Founders or Kingswood dining halls. Also, coming personally from a Northern European country, eating out for any meal has always been expensive, so this for me at least, wasn't really a bother. You can always pack your own lunch (unless you live in Founders--the food is decent for the price. I eat a lot, so I paid around £3 for each lunch and dinner, but it is definitely possible to get by spending £2 for each meal).

    For drinks, I buy coffee in Crosslands often (I find it cheaper than Café Jules and prefer the atmosphere) which can range from £1-4. But if you're a tea drinker, you can get free hot water in Bedford library and use your own thermos and tea bags, and this wouldn't be a problem if you live on or so close to campus you can just walk home for a drink cuppa.

    I can't speak about biology, because I do not study a science degree. But what I can say is this: if you are very sociable and meet people easily, it doesn't matter which university you attend--I recognise a lot of people on campus who I actually do not know, and who if I were to begin talking to them they would find me rude and weird. But I think that's just the English for you.
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    Oh wow, thanks so much for the prompt and extremely detailed reply - that's exactly the kind of stuff I like!

    It's great to hear about the catered halls, I'm rather awful at cooking so I'll have to rely on them until I get my feet on the ground. And thanks also for that deduction on the social scene. I'm not particularly big on being social (I mean I am but I don't need people constantly) so the size of the university doesn't matter that much to me at the moment.

    What degree are you studying?
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    Founders canteen is great and relatively inexpensive.

    I loved Royal Holloway, I was a post grad student so didn't take part in much of the clubs and societies but on the whole while I was there I thought it would be a lovely place to live. The annoying thing is the long walk to the station, and if you don't have a 16-25 railcard then the travel can get pretty pricey. There are a few interesting shops in Stain(e?)s I think which isn't too far. The feel of the campus is lovely though, I thoroughly enjoyed it.

    Academically, all of my professors were very helpful and very interesting. They were more than willing to put in extra time for their students and everyone was very friendly. Both libraries are also very well stocked but bear in mind that you can visit any University of London library, including Senate House. Overall, I thought it was a great place to study and I wished I did my undergrad there!
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    Oh, libraries! Something I had completely forgotten! I adore them so the fact that they're good is a super plus! The travel problems have come up a few times already so I suppose it's a major issue with the campus location, hm....I'm really happy to hear how lovely the teachers and academics are, that's the main point of it all really.
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    Travel isn't that much of a problem, in fairness. It takes about 10 minutes or so to get to the station from campus, and 40 minutes to get into London.
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    That's not too long for a weekend's trip I suppose. Aah, the university sounds really nice, I'll take it into serious consideration, thank you!
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    are there many muslims at this uni?
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    (Original post by Secretnerd123)
    are there many muslims at this uni?
    Yes they have a Muslim society and do prayers every Friday in the prayer room.

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    This may be a bit off piece, but are there halal restaurants nearby? I only ask because the area around the uni appear to sound pretty desolate
 
 
 
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