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    Can anybody give me any info on the masters degree at UCL

    1) Is it good, bad ?
    2) how does it stack up against the robotics masters at Uni of Sheffield and Uni of Bristol.
    3) How are the labs, facilities and professors ?

    Thanks
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    I think we can make a safe inference to answer it:Let's thinkCL has huge investments and is way ahead other unis in terms of research quality and connection with industry partners; UCL has top Medical and Architecture Departments in the world and the robotics msc has strong ties with them. The department of computer science may not be the most reputable one, but surely it will be far far far far from disappointing you. Just remember what they did with MIT in the past and all the stuff going on with Fibre Optics.Also think about this: UCL is a global university, big budget, top professors (have a look on their profiles / papers) and is offering a MsC degree that is in the spotlight due to its huge potential impact in the industry, medical sciences, construction...I am pretty sure UCL doesn't want to lag behind.Besides, depending on where you came from, UCL may be slightly less known than Oxford and Cambridge (eg: Brazil), but in the Academic World UCL is ALWAYS remembered and respected...also by the top employers in Europe
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    Hi, I did this Msc. ummm... soo there is some truth to what @btrentini is saying.

    I will grant you that:
    - UCL has many opportunities in CS and great industry ties. I mean, google derp-mind (derp intentional) teaches an ML course here.
    - The small cohort allows you to have good personal relationships with profs of your main modules at least.

    However... The course is a shambles put together by people who chase personal ambition and dont care about it (they say they do, but take no action). You would feel that primarily via:

    - If you ask current students, they will say they feel forgotten.
    - Course structure is not worked out yet. I can say for sure that 2/4 core modules are total shi-.... the optional/electives are very good and of high standard tho.
    - The grading/feedback/labs and similar infrastructure is not worked out in 3/4 core modules.

    UCL is pushing robotics and everything is new, but this also means the momentum is not there yet. So people in charge of the course on top of showing no action and effort towards making it work, dont have the funds/power necessary to make it work.

    There is a big issue atm with UCL CS MSc modules. Since UCL is run as a business, they are trying to maximise profits and minimise expenses... i.e. raise fees, get more students than their buildings can handle, don't invest in course development at all. You will feel this primarily when you try to get into any of your optional modules. For example supervised learning is a very attractive one. And the amount of people in that module is limited by the room sizes they can get. which means... you wont get in... because SL is a core module to MSc CSML, and ML, there are about 120-140 of them. And perhaps only 20 non csml people get into this course. Same for most modules. This overflow ofc also contributes to other things that are caused by too many people... like getting out off a building can take 10-15 minutes. but thats irrelevant.

    My advise would be:
    - if you already 'know' robotics. I.e. have experience in control theory, some vision, general CS. AND you are VERY proactive --> go for it.
    - otherwise, its a waste of time and money. This programme will only be worth it if you take HUGE advantage of networking opportunities. Otherwise, you can get a better education on coursera.
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    Haha feeling little ad hominem vibes here. But perhaps I wasnt specific enough in my claims.
    Well.. I am in an awkward situation here as I know way too much of what goes on 'behind the scenes' of the programme and how much actual effort is being put into that material taught. But I will defend a few points that I made without whistle-blowing too much.



    - "Students Feel Forgotten"
    -- Please calm down here Mr(s) Btrentini, no need to create an elaborate absurd visual and attack that
    -- Here i specifically mean feedback/marking of coursework that takes 4-6 months... yes... There is coursework, in 100% coursework assessed courses (im talking core modules here) that you get feedback on 4-5 months after the coursework. (and coursework build on top of one another, so you need feedback from one to do well in the next one.)
    -- I guess the reason i used the word forgotten is due to the lack of response that students receive to emails, raised issues etc. Including course reps.
    -- A good example of no 'response' would be an occurrence when students didnt know how many pieces of coursework a module will have right up till the end of the module. The weights, of the courseworks were changed after submission date, and the class was not informed of the status of the assessment.

    - " good bosses"
    Again, ad hominem. or at best a reverse appeal to authority (as if discrediting me, would discredit my argument).
    -- Eitherway, I had some fantastic bosses. tbh, so far the only non fantastic bosses i met were at UCL. I've check other unis, large companies and startups.

    "personal ambition"
    - I can't really explain this without uncovering examples which would be inappropriate here. But the point here is that the people responsible for the course do not care about the teaching quality.

    "your tip"
    - Totally, agree. The students here are pretty cool. Not Amazing, Imperial student are more knowledgeable, but more depressed. Cambridge students are bit too varied to describe. UCL has a nice knowledge-healthy mix. I advise to be proactive and socially/academically engaged as well.


    Don't get me wrong, there are some fantastic brilliant people at UCL and especially UCL CS. Those just arent the ones running this course. I do hope and believe things will get sorted in 2-5 years time, its a new programme after all. But theres lots of barking and no biting.

    I also agree with the opportunity to contribute point. Hence I would advise people to come do a PhD or RA or post doc here. But MSc is a product. theres no contribution :/

    "It's a shame you did this MsC and have these arguments against it. You should rethink. "
    Well these are just moral judgements. you're pushing your ethics onto others. Why is attitude bad? why having criticisms is bad? Then you go on to suggest my opinion is isolated and that somehow diminishes my points. I dont see how you are constructing these or even why. Dunno, Mr(s) Btrentini, I did pretty well in this degree, but that doesnt stop me from being honest about it. Its not worth the money at the moment. Give it some time and it will be (if people in power get a grip).
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    (Original post by julius1618)
    Haha feeling little ad hominem vibes here. But perhaps I wasnt specific enough in my claims.
    Well.. I am in an awkward situation here as I know way too much of what goes on 'behind the scenes' of the programme and how much actual effort is being put into that material taught. But I will defend a few points that I made without whistle-blowing too much.



    - "Students Feel Forgotten"
    -- Please calm down here Mr(s) Btrentini, no need to create an elaborate absurd visual and attack that
    -- Here i specifically mean feedback/marking of coursework that takes 4-6 months... yes... There is coursework, in 100% coursework assessed courses (im talking core modules here) that you get feedback on 4-5 months after the coursework. (and coursework build on top of one another, so you need feedback from one to do well in the next one.)
    -- I guess the reason i used the word forgotten is due to the lack of response that students receive to emails, raised issues etc. Including course reps.
    -- A good example of no 'response' would be an occurrence when students didnt know how many pieces of coursework a module will have right up till the end of the module. The weights, of the courseworks were changed after submission date, and the class was not informed of the status of the assessment.

    - " good bosses"
    Again, ad hominem. or at best a reverse appeal to authority (as if discrediting me, would discredit my argument).
    -- Eitherway, I had some fantastic bosses. tbh, so far the only non fantastic bosses i met were at UCL. I've check other unis, large companies and startups.

    "personal ambition"
    - I can't really explain this without uncovering examples which would be inappropriate here. But the point here is that the people responsible for the course do not care about the teaching quality.

    "your tip"
    - Totally, agree. The students here are pretty cool. Not Amazing, Imperial student are more knowledgeable, but more depressed. Cambridge students are bit too varied to describe. UCL has a nice knowledge-healthy mix. I advise to be proactive and socially/academically engaged as well.


    Don't get me wrong, there are some fantastic brilliant people at UCL and especially UCL CS. Those just arent the ones running this course. I do hope and believe things will get sorted in 2-5 years time, its a new programme after all. But theres lots of barking and no biting.

    I also agree with the opportunity to contribute point. Hence I would advise people to come do a PhD or RA or post doc here. But MSc is a product. theres no contribution :/

    "It's a shame you did this MsC and have these arguments against it. You should rethink. "
    Well these are just moral judgements. you're pushing your ethics onto others. Why is attitude bad? why having criticisms is bad? Then you go on to suggest my opinion is isolated and that somehow diminishes my points. I dont see how you are constructing these or even why. Dunno, Mr(s) Btrentini, I did pretty well in this degree, but that doesnt stop me from being honest about it. Its not worth the money at the moment. Give it some time and it will be (if people in power get a grip).
    You're actually right. I made a few mistakes in my previous post and tried to delete it (you were way quicker!). Apologies for any "ad hominem" or non-sense argument.

    I think my reasoning about the thread can be resumed as "you have no idea how badly some people want / how difficult it is to get to UCL" (specially foreign students) and debasing the course due facts that are not exclusive to that university / department is not enough to diminish what you'll certainly gain by attending this MsC at UCL.

    You mention "imperial" and "cambridge", but can you imagine how it feels to someone coming from Greece, Georgia, Macedonia, Nigeria, Ethopia, Argentina, Mexico....etc? I believe for ppl coming from countries whose best university ranks after the top 1K, UCL is defintely absolutely unquestionably beyond anything you can possibly have. But not only that...I am not saying that this MsC degree is perfect, but I did some research, spoke to other alumni, have been following projects and professors, and spoke with some hiring managers of big companies based near Bloosmbury. One of these companies a top one in their industry. Trust me: this degree, although not perfect, is great. Maybe not because the compulsory modules, but definitely because of the department, modules, professors, networking... and the transferable skills you'll get.

    My opinion: try as hard as you can to learn computer vision, unsupervised learning (through any module), numerical optimisation (if you ddn;t have this module before)... these are things that can be easily transferable and overlap with many "disputed modules".

    Also make try to use your dissertation as shelf to display your skills in themes that are a burden to organisations / society and try to a real problem (remember: this is MsC not Mres)

    @julius, it's a shame the Msc felt like a product to you

    I agree with you and think this will improve over time, but I'd be really concerned if an alumni would come here saying: "It's rubbish, not worth a pence", but it doesn't seem to be the case. It's seems like your argument is "There are better options and better Value For Money out there", but that's the case for all courses (think about the "Secretary Algorithm")... maybe less pronounced at Stanford, MIT and Cornel, Berkeley or even maybe Edinburgh who have traditional AI departments, but let's give it a chance for UCL and make sure that, if we're there, however course, we're doing our best to build a strong reputation for the department even when certain people don't care. I've seen over many years and countries that some people are simply like that: waiting the day they'll retire while some other people are trying to get into the real thing. We need to work harder and compensate for those who are not better than street cones

    I am pretty sure this year's course will be better than last year's. And next year's better than this year's and so on....

    So, if you're planning to do this MsC, trust me: you have a great future ahead of you. You're most likely very smart, talented and able.

    If you manage to get into Stanford, MIT or Cornell, prioritize these over UCL. Maybe ETH Zurich is slightly better, but If you're between UCL and any other, then UCL may be a top option with minor pros and cons.

    julius1618, again, sorry if my first response was a bit strange! I really wanted to delete that and reply more appropriately

    Cheers!
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    (Original post by btrentini)
    You're actually right. I made a few mistakes in my previous post and tried to delete it (you were way quicker!). Apologies for any "ad hominem" or non-sense argument.

    I think my reasoning about the thread can be resumed as "you have no idea how badly some people want / how difficult it is to get to UCL" (specially foreign students) and debasing the course due facts that are not exclusive to that university / department is not enough to diminish what you'll certainly gain by attending this MsC at UCL.

    You mention "imperial" and "cambridge", but can you imagine how it feels to someone coming from Greece, Georgia, Macedonia, Nigeria, Ethopia, Argentina, Mexico....etc? I believe for ppl coming from countries whose best university ranks after the top 1K, UCL is defintely absolutely unquestionably beyond anything you can possibly have. But not only that...I am not saying that this MsC degree is perfect, but I did some research, spoke to other alumni, have been following projects and professors, and spoke with some hiring managers of big companies based near Bloosmbury. One of these companies a top one in their industry. Trust me: this degree, although not perfect, is great. Maybe not because the compulsory modules, but definitely because of the department, modules, professors, networking... and the transferable skills you'll get.

    My opinion: try as hard as you can to learn computer vision, unsupervised learning (through any module), numerical optimisation (if you ddn;t have this module before)... these are things that can be easily transferable and overlap with many "disputed modules".

    Also make try to use your dissertation as shelf to display your skills in themes that are a burden to organisations / society and try to a real problem (remember: this is MsC not Mres)

    @julius, it's a shame the Msc felt like a product to you

    I agree with you and think this will improve over time, but I'd be really concerned if an alumni would come here saying: "It's rubbish, not worth a pence", but it doesn't seem to be the case. It's seems like your argument is "There are better options and better Value For Money out there", but that's the case for all courses (think about the "Secretary Algorithm"... maybe less pronounced at Stanford, MIT and Cornel, Berkeley or even maybe Edinburgh who have traditional AI departments, but let's give it a chance for UCL and make sure that, if we're there, however course, we're doing our best to build a strong reputation for the department even when certain people don't care. I've seen over many years and countries that some people are simply like that: waiting the day they'll retire while some other people are trying to get into the real thing. We need to work harder and compensate for those who are not better than street cones

    I am pretty sure this year's course will be better than last year's. And next year's better than this year's and so on....

    So, if you're planning to do this MsC, trust me: you have a great future ahead of you. You're most likely very smart, talented and able.

    If you manage to get into Stanford, MIT or Cornell, prioritize these over UCL. Maybe ETH Zurich is slightly better, but If you're between UCL and any other, then UCL may be a top option with minor pros and cons.

    julius1618, again, sorry if my first response was a bit strange! I really wanted to delete that and reply more appropriately

    Cheers!

    Thanks for being nice B. Hope i didnt come off too harshly as well.

    " I think my reasoning about the thread can be resumed as "you have no idea how badly some people want / how difficult it is to get to UCL" (specially foreign students) and debasing the course due facts that are not exclusive to that university / department is not enough to diminish what you'll certainly gain by attending this MsC at UCL. "

    Both sound arguments imo. And I agree. UCL is top 10 consistently for decades (I think theres one exception). And their CS is amazing at ML and vision. And I absolutely do take it for granted. Should rethink, before i get a reality kick .

    And ye my 'opinion' is that its worth maybe 70% of the cost. Honestly if they address those 2 issues. core modules and CS space. This would be a perfect degree. And worth the price...

    "You mention "imperial" and "cambridge", but can you imagine how it feels to someone coming from Greece, Georgia..."

    Sadly this just makes me depressed, because imho UK universities as a whole are abusing foreign students. Just doing the maths on the income they get from them etc. UCL publishes their demographics, you can see the ratios of home and overseas students. Also the UK legislation of how many overseas students uk unis are allowed to accept, all that jazz. Tho thats a story for another thread

    But ye, I reckon this hopefully will be an awesome degree soon. I hope they will hire an actual teaching fellow to sort out the core modules. IF thats done, ez best degree.
 
 
 
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