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    (Original post by WithoutMuchHope)
    Hi guys, has anyone heard about the Margaret Campbell Scott scholarship available at Edinburgh? Their website does give some info, but it's a bit vague. Apparently you don't need to apply, but everything else is a bit shrouded in mystery.

    Anyone know anything or know of any past recipients? Thanks!
    From what I've read you just try to be in the top few applicants. Do you know how many they offer? And do additional a levels/as levels count towards it?

    And what is everyone thinking on accommodation? I can't decide between twin/single and catered/self-catered. Twin rooms are much better value, but what if you don't like whomever you stay with?
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    (Original post by C0balt)
    Hi! Do you like the course, the department and the university?
    Personally, yes, although some of my friends liked the course less. The course has been variable, basically some lecturers/modules much better than others, but I bet you get that at all universities that hire faculty who do good research, and it can pay off once you start doing research projects in 4th/5th year. Some of the modules in years 1-3 were a lot of hard work for what seemed like very little reward, as we had lots of hand ins that took ages but only counted for a very small portion of our grade. Also, in the first few years there is sometimes quite a lot of repetition of material, which can be a bit frustrating but wasn't the end of the world. My final year has definitely been by far the most enjoyable, because you can choose exactly what you want to study and this means that a) it's more interesting for you, and b) the lecturers are more engaged with the course content because it's generally their research area (although course quality is still variable, but at least there are student reviews for most courses so you know what you're letting yourself in for). Plus, almost half of your modules are taken up by your research project, so there's a lot more flexibility for you to work however suits you best, and a lot of autonomy. The research is also generally really enjoyable, as long as you choose something that interests you and a supervisor who's style suits your way of working.

    The department is generally a good atmosphere, all the lecturers are friendly and approachable and I can't think of a single one who wouldn't be willing to meet with a student to help go over parts of the course they need help with. Especially once you start doing some research work, you really get to know some of the staff well and they're pretty much all great people. The staff in the teaching office are also really friendly, as well as the other people doing the course. You also get assigned to a member of research staff who is you personal tutor, who is your first port of call for anything you want/need (module choices, degree changes, if you're struggling with courses, CV/careers advice, etc etc), and you can tell that these people care about you getting the most you can out of your time here.

    The university is generally fine I'd say, plenty of societies and things to get involved in etc. The science courses are taught in a different location to the rest of the university, so it sometimes seems a bit like we're out of the loop when it comes to what the SU gets up to, but I think a lot of that is also down to the fact that we tend to have a lot more contact hours so are less engaged with stuff outside our course. Bit of a self-fulfilling cycle I guess!

    One of the best things I'd say about coming to Edinburgh is the city and the location. It's a beautiful city with loads to do, and there are hills close by where it's really nice to go to get away from it all sometimes!

    Basically, although I can't say I've got no complaints, I don't think it would have been better at any other uni, and I would definitely come back here if I made the choice again (in fact, I'm staying on for a PhD next year).

    Sorry, that was a lot longer than I intended!
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    (Original post by ixicrom)
    Sorry, that was a lot longer than I intended!
    No no, don't worry! Rather, thank you so much for your detailed reply Today I insured Edinburgh for Chemical Physics after having a lot of doubts and hesitation, so it is really great to hear positive views from a current student, especially seeing Edinburgh has terrible student satisfaction scores online for some reason! What are you specialised in?
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    (Original post by WithoutMuchHope)
    Hi guys, has anyone heard about the Margaret Campbell Scott scholarship available at Edinburgh? Their website does give some info, but it's a bit vague. Apparently you don't need to apply, but everything else is a bit shrouded in mystery.

    Anyone know anything or know of any past recipients? Thanks!
    Two of my friends got this scholarship when they started. It basically goes to whoever got the best A level/Scottish Higher grades out of the people who are starting that year, I think it's the top 10 people.

    I think that it's the kind of thing where if you get it, that's great, but you can't predict whether you're going to be one of the recipients or not so you can't rely on it as a source of income. One of my friends used it to buy himself a fancy laptop when his old one broke.
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    (Original post by C0balt)
    No no, don't worry! Rather, thank you so much for your detailed reply Today I insured Edinburgh for Chemical Physics after having a lot of doubts and hesitation, so it is really great to hear positive views from a current student, especially seeing Edinburgh has terrible student satisfaction scores online for some reason! What are you specialised in?
    I'm mainly specialising in soft condensed matter (that's what my PhD will be too), but I'm doing bits a pieces of a lot of things. You don't actually have to choose an area to specialise in (although it makes sense to take courses that are related to your project), so if you want you can keep your degree very broad and try out lots of different things to figure out what interests you most. If you do the MPhys, you can do your 4th and 5th year projects in completely different subjects with no bother at all, which is nice if you're still looking for your specialism!
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    (Original post by C0balt)
    especially seeing Edinburgh has terrible student satisfaction scores online for some reason!
    I think this (for the most recent scores for physics) is at least partly due to the fact that the most of the students who graduated last year (who give the most recent scores) were in my year group but left with a BSc, and we had to deal with the confusion of a restructure of the degree program, so we never knew what course choices we would have in the next year, and some of the courses were new and had some wrinkles that needed to be ironed out. Other than this, I'm not sure why they are quite so terrible apart from maybe the fact that "neutral" scores are counted as negative in some of the analysis that NSS (the survey people) do, and maybe people feel quite neutral about their experience at Edinburgh... Either way the department does take them very seriously and did a massive student consultation last year about what they could do to improve things.
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    An offee dor Msci theoretical physics here. Did AS chemistry, maths, furthermaths (self-taught) and physics. Got AAAA.
    This year I'm doing the same 4 but A2s. Since my offer is AAA, I'm confident of getting two As in physics and maths.
    Not sure about chemisty or furhrmaths.
    Do you think they'll be okay with AAB?
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    (Original post by ixicrom)
    I think this (for the most recent scores for physics) is at least partly due to the fact that the most of the students who graduated last year (who give the most recent scores) were in my year group but left with a BSc, and we had to deal with the confusion of a restructure of the degree program, so we never knew what course choices we would have in the next year, and some of the courses were new and had some wrinkles that needed to be ironed out. Other than this, I'm not sure why they are quite so terrible apart from maybe the fact that "neutral" scores are counted as negative in some of the analysis that NSS (the survey people) do, and maybe people feel quite neutral about their experience at Edinburgh... Either way the department does take them very seriously and did a massive student consultation last year about what they could do to improve things.
    I want to firm Edinburgh but I think the student satisfaction is holding me back. Is it like the lecturers don't really care about what they're teaching and aren't enthusiastic? Would you recommend the degree and the department?


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    (Original post by 1lilypad1)
    I want to firm Edinburgh but I think the student satisfaction is holding me back. Is it like the lecturers don't really care about what they're teaching and aren't enthusiastic? Would you recommend the degree and the department?


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    Sorry if my reply is a bit late, I think the deadline for deciding was a few days ago? To put your mind at rest if you did firm Edinburgh, I would say that 99% of the lecturers do clearly care about their teaching and are enthusiastic about it, but some of them are just too clever for their own good and therefore their lectures and notes can be hard to follow. I think this problem is inevitable if you employ lecturers who are good at physics, but if you don't understand the course they are always willing to arrange a time when you can sit down with them to discuss what you're struggling with, and they're generally around in tutorials too where you can ask them questions. This doesn't always help because sometimes they just can't explain it in a way you understand, but there are also PhD students who tutor each course and can sometimes help explain things in a simpler way. Also, having said that, there are also some fantastic lecturers at Edinburgh so you'll definitely get a mixture of teaching styles (and quality) during your degree.
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    (Original post by ixicrom)
    Sorry if my reply is a bit late, I think the deadline for deciding was a few days ago? To put your mind at rest if you did firm Edinburgh, I would say that 99% of the lecturers do clearly care about their teaching and are enthusiastic about it, but some of them are just too clever for their own good and therefore their lectures and notes can be hard to follow. I think this problem is inevitable if you employ lecturers who are good at physics, but if you don't understand the course they are always willing to arrange a time when you can sit down with them to discuss what you're struggling with, and they're generally around in tutorials too where you can ask them questions. This doesn't always help because sometimes they just can't explain it in a way you understand, but there are also PhD students who tutor each course and can sometimes help explain things in a simpler way. Also, having said that, there are also some fantastic lecturers at Edinburgh so you'll definitely get a mixture of teaching styles (and quality) during your degree.
    Thanks for replying. Yeah, the deadline was wednesday but I believe there is a 7 day period after firming when you can change your mind. I have Edinburgh as my insurance and Bath as my firm, but I'm tempted to firm Edinburgh instead because I think it is more prestigious and also the degree structure is very good for keeping my options open. I'm especially interested in the astro stuff!


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    if you guys are thinking about going to edinburgh, join the fb group for any questions you may have

    facebook.com/groups/925767134160872/
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    I have an unconditional for BSc Astrophysics and Edinburgh is my first choice. And I'm an international student.
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    (Original post by ixicrom)
    Sorry if my reply is a bit late, I think the deadline for deciding was a few days ago? To put your mind at rest if you did firm Edinburgh, I would say that 99% of the lecturers do clearly care about their teaching and are enthusiastic about it, but some of them are just too clever for their own good and therefore their lectures and notes can be hard to follow. I think this problem is inevitable if you employ lecturers who are good at physics, but if you don't understand the course they are always willing to arrange a time when you can sit down with them to discuss what you're struggling with, and they're generally around in tutorials too where you can ask them questions. This doesn't always help because sometimes they just can't explain it in a way you understand, but there are also PhD students who tutor each course and can sometimes help explain things in a simpler way. Also, having said that, there are also some fantastic lecturers at Edinburgh so you'll definitely get a mixture of teaching styles (and quality) during your degree.
    How many textbooks will we need for Year 2? Are they cheap or can they be bought cheaply anywhere?
 
 
 
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