Not in the Russell Group...? Watch

august1994
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I am a student at the University of Sussex. I previously had an offer to study at Oxford but didn't quite make the grades so I took a gap year and applied to Sussex. I had other offers from Russell Group universities but I passed them up as I really liked Sussex when I visited and, at the time, I didn’t give the Russell Group too much thought.

I have loved my time at Sussex so far. I've made great friends and I feel like I am getting a challenging, engaging and rigorous education. I have been taught by some relatively well-known professors, who have chosen to move to Sussex from very prestigious universities. From my personal experience, I honestly couldn’t praise the academics enough.

However, it not being in the Russell Group bothers me more than I anticipated. I am aware that the Russell Group was not intended to be an objective mark of prestige; illustrated by the fact that many top universities (such as York and Durham) have only just joined. Furthermore in the world league tables Sussex is placed above a number of Russell Group universities (This year Times Higher Education rate it above Leeds, Warwick, Southampton, Exeter, Birmingham, Nottingham, Newcastle and Liverpool)

Yet it remains that many members of our generation see not being in the Russell Group as synonymous with bad. I know that if I feel like I am getting a good education at Sussex that is all that should matter but this is really bothering me. I won't consider transferring as other than these thoughts I do really love Sussex but this is affecting my enjoyment of university. Has anyone else felt this about their university and does anyone have any advice on how to get over this?
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SirMasterKey
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You are an undergraduate. The status of your university being in the Russell Group or not has almost nil effect on your degree. It only matters for PhD and post-doc. students.

Remember this and you'll see it is a silly thing to worry about.

Besides, some courses have better teaching at non RG universities.
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Democracy
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(Original post by august1994)

Yet it remains that many members of our generation see not being in the Russell Group as synonymous with bad. I know that if I feel like I am getting a good education at Sussex that is all that should matter but this is really bothering me. I won't consider transferring as other than these thoughts I do really love Sussex but this is affecting my enjoyment of university. Has anyone else felt this about their university and does anyone have any advice on how to get over this?
And by members of our generation...you really mean "members of TSR"...who also believe life isn't worth living if you're not doing a STEM subject, that everyone who doesn't go into IB will end up destitute, and that Nigel Farage will be the greatest PM this country will ever have in 8 months time. There are some real geniuses on here, that's for sure...

So this throws up a more important issue entirely - why do you even give a **** what these clowns say?

You love your university - that's great. A lot of people don't - so be happy and leave it at that. Don't let the neckbeards give you an inferiority complex.
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Roving Fish
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Brace yourselves, the Pro RG brigade are incoming.
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***OpenSky***
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im not a russel group but Im really happy with my choice now ive settled in. at the end of the day we cant all go to russel groups
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Black Cat
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RGs are heavily overrated
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EllieC130
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I'm in a similar position; I'm at the university of Kent, though I chose to go here. I do find myself looking on here and feeling a bit inferior but it just motivates me even more to increase my employability prospects through work experience and such. There's probably a handful of people at Russell group unis who believe the degree is all they need to get employment which may not necessarily be true.
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august1994
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Thanks so much everyone. This has really helped. Yes I did wonder if this was predominantly a TSR thing as most of the teachers/ academics/ parents i've talked to about this have told me that they don't even really know which unis are Russell Group and which aren't and that the grade you get is much more important than the uni you go to i.e. a 1st from Sussex would definitely more valuable than 2:1 from most Russell Group universities. Thanks again.
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poohat
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(Original post by august1994)
Thanks so much everyone. This has really helped. Yes I did wonder if this was predominantly a TSR thing as most of the teachers/ academics/ parents i've talked to about this have told me that they don't even really know which unis are Russell Group and which aren't and that the grade you get is much more important than the uni you go to i.e. a 1st from Sussex would definitely more valuable than 2:1 from most Russell Group universities. Thanks again.
This is broadly correct. There are some very prestigious universities in the RG, but also some that are slightly less prestigious. Its not like any employer is going to think that a degree from Liverpool or Newcastle is worth more than one from Sussex/Lancaster/Bath just because the former two are RG.
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limetang
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My university (St Andrews) is not in the russell group, but is currently ranked (by multiple groups) in the top five, and while it is by no means the best university in the UK it is certainly better than a fair few members of the russell group (though definitely not all)
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sr90
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The RG is overrated. I've never even heard anyone use the term outside of TSR.
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LukeyJB
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(Original post by sr90)
The RG is overrated. I've never even heard anyone use the term outside of TSR.
I recently had an interview for legal work experience and the interviewer didn't know what the RG is.
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lozasaurus99
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(Original post by SirMasterKey)
You are an undergraduate. The status of your university being in the Russell Group or not has almost nil effect on your degree. It only matters for PhD and post-doc. students.

Remember this and you'll see it is a silly thing to worry about.

Besides, some courses have better teaching at non RG universities.
Not if you want to do law?

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jammy4041
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The supposed importance of the Russell Group university is overrated. Experience in the field is more important in terms of jobs. Heck. I wager that many non-RG universities do a better job at getting students into employment than a good number of RG institutions. :cool:

(Original post by Democracy)
And by members of our generation...you really mean "members of TSR"...who also believe life isn't worth living if you're not doing a STEM subject, that everyone who doesn't go into IB will end up destitute, and that Nigel Farage will be the greatest PM this country will ever have in 8 months time. There are some real geniuses on here, that's for sure...

So this throws up a more important issue entirely - why do you even give a **** what these clowns say?

You love your university - that's great. A lot of people don't - so be happy and leave it at that. Don't let the neckbeards give you an inferiority complex.
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Magnus Taylor
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I got my offer from Warwick last night and I will be accepting it because the Russel group will enable me do well in History ( research ). Although, if you are doing a more practical course such as engineering it doesn't matter too much
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GandalfWhite
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Universities in the Russell Group are deemed to have at least a certain standard BUT that does not mean that ALL universities that are not part of the Russell Group are below those standards. There are universities NOT within the Russell Group which may even be better than those in the RG. Also, one should not assume that ALL courses within the same university are of the same standards. Standards vary even within the same university. So, it is more than possible that some courses in nonRG universities are better than those in RG universities. RG is just a 'brand' or group representing a certain quality or standard.
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august1994
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Thanks again everyone.

My university (St Andrews) is not in the russell group, but is currently ranked (by multiple groups) in the top five, and while it is by no means the best university in the UK it is certainly better than a fair few members of the russell group (though definitely not all)
Just seen St Andrews and Sussex tied at 111st in the world and 12th in the UK in new Times Higher Education tables released today.
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