Should I study at UCL to save money or go to Bristol for the uni experience? Watch

Mish2000
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I've got offers from both UCL and Bristol to start studying History this year and both of them have the same grade requirements for me to get in.

I live in London and UCL is only about 15 minutes away from where I live. I also already have a job (I've been working on a gap year) and so I would be saving a huge amount of money, plus not having to take out the maintenance loan. My parents don't charge me for anything at home so I essentially have zero costs whilst I'm earning money I could easily save lots of money, buy a car, move out after etc...

But then I'm also quite keen to move out to Bristol when I go to study. Some people tell me that it's a good learning experience and currently I have several siblings here so not much space or freedom at home and I was hoping I would be able to get that at uni.

I was keen to go to Bristol but my older brother (who is studying outside of London) keeps telling me to stay because he thinks I'll just be wasting money and he keeps telling me that UCL has a good name and reputation if I tell people that I studied there in the future.

I only have until 1st May to firm my choice and I'm still not sure what to do.
Last edited by Mish2000; 9 months ago
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claireestelle
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(Original post by Mish2000)
I've got offers from both UCL and Bristol to start studying History this year and both of them have the same grade requirements for me to get in.

I live in London and UCL is only about 15 minutes away from where I live. I also already have a job (I've been working on a gap year) and so I would be saving a huge amount of money, plus not having to take out the maintenance loan. My parents don't charge me for anything at home so I essentially have zero costs whilst I'm earning money I could easily save lots of money, buy a car, move out after etc...

But then I'm also quite keen to move out to Bristol when I go to study. Some people tell me that it's a good learning experience and currently I have several siblings here so not much space or freedom at home and I was hoping I would be able to get that at uni.

I was keen to go to Bristol but my older brother (who is studying outside of London) keeps telling me to stay because he thinks I'll just be wasting money and he keeps telling me that UCL has a good name and reputation if I tell people that I studied there in the future.

I only have until 1st May to firm my choice and I'm still not sure what to do.
Make yourself a pros and cons list for Bristol and UCL and see which has more positives for you personally.Have you checked what loan amount you'd get if you went to bristol?
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watershower
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You should listen to your brother. In the future the uni experience is not important. You don’t want to go into 30k debt for ‘the uni experience’. Don’t forget why you are there, to get a degree.
You can still get the same uni experience in London and you can use the money you saved to have a good time.
UCL also does have a better reputation and it might be more worthwhile going there. I
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Mish2000
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(Original post by claireestelle)
Make yourself a pros and cons list for Bristol and UCL and see which has more positives for you personally.Have you checked what loan amount you'd get if you went to bristol?
Yes, I would be getting the maximum maintenance loan (about £8000.00) plus the money I've saved up from this year for working which by then will probably be about £4000.00 or so.
I may also be eligible for a bursary too.
I'd say I'm going to uni fairly well off, my brother tells me the money will all go to rent though.
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SuperHuman98
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(Original post by Mish2000)
I've got offers from both UCL and Bristol to start studying History this year and both of them have the same grade requirements for me to get in.

I live in London and UCL is only about 15 minutes away from where I live. I also already have a job (I've been working on a gap year) and so I would be saving a huge amount of money, plus not having to take out the maintenance loan. My parents don't charge me for anything at home so I essentially have zero costs whilst I'm earning money I could easily save lots of money, buy a car, move out after etc...

But then I'm also quite keen to move out to Bristol when I go to study. Some people tell me that it's a good learning experience and currently I have several siblings here so not much space or freedom at home and I was hoping I would be able to get that at uni.

I was keen to go to Bristol but my older brother (who is studying outside of London) keeps telling me to stay because he thinks I'll just be wasting money and he keeps telling me that UCL has a good name and reputation if I tell people that I studied there in the future.

I only have until 1st May to firm my choice and I'm still not sure what to do.
I firmed UCL for History last year and missed my offer. Would have loved to go ,because I would have lived out in accommodation for the first year and then probably commuted 2nd and 3rd year. It takes me about 30minutes to get to the university.

Best thing for History though is course structure. UCL has a great range of modules I would compare it to the type of history you will be studying at Bristol
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claireestelle
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(Original post by Mish2000)
Yes, I would be getting the maximum maintenance loan (about £8000.00) plus the money I've saved up from this year for working which by then will probably be about £4000.00 or so.
I may also be eligible for a bursary too.
I'd say I'm going to uni fairly well off, my brother tells me the money will all go to rent though.
take a look at the accommodation prices but i cant see you having a problem with having 12k to live off at all.
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Mish2000
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(Original post by claireestelle)
take a look at the accommodation prices but i cant see you having a problem with having 12k to live off at all.
He doesn't think I'll have a problem living at uni. It's just about all the money he says I could be saving for after uni is all.
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returnmigrant
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1) Leave home if you can afford to. It will increase your maturity/confidence and your ability to get on with other people, and manage your own life. You wont achieve any of that living at home.

2) This : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=khM7tjui86Q
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TensorTympani
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(Original post by Mish2000)
I've got offers from both UCL and Bristol to start studying History this year and both of them have the same grade requirements for me to get in.

I live in London and UCL is only about 15 minutes away from where I live. I also already have a job (I've been working on a gap year) and so I would be saving a huge amount of money, plus not having to take out the maintenance loan. My parents don't charge me for anything at home so I essentially have zero costs whilst I'm earning money I could easily save lots of money, buy a car, move out after etc...

But then I'm also quite keen to move out to Bristol when I go to study. Some people tell me that it's a good learning experience and currently I have several siblings here so not much space or freedom at home and I was hoping I would be able to get that at uni.

I was keen to go to Bristol but my older brother (who is studying outside of London) keeps telling me to stay because he thinks I'll just be wasting money and he keeps telling me that UCL has a good name and reputation if I tell people that I studied there in the future.

I only have until 1st May to firm my choice and I'm still not sure what to do.
Go to UCL as it has a higher world ranking for doing a history degree also it is more convenient for you so go to UCL it has a higher world ranking for history degrees.
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Arisapo
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I’ve lived in Bristol all my life so can give you a pretty good perspective.

Bristol’s an amazing city — especially from a student perspective. Where the uni is located is beautiful, the nightlife is brilliant and for a student experience, I can’t think of many better places.

Also, the independence part is something I feel you need. I disagree with an above poster about “the uni experience” not mattering — living away from home gives you the chance to mature, find independence and experience a new city without the constant suffocation of family and parents. Staying at home and being 15 minutes away would seem like going to school to me.

UCL is a very good uni don’t get me wrong, but there’s not a lot in it between UCL and Bristol, especially for something like History. An employer won’t mind if you choose one over the other as they’re both prestigious and academic. It’s not like you’re choosing between UCL and Bangor or something.

If you’re really concerned with saving money, then go to UCL. Personally I’d advise Bristol though as not only is it an amazing city but you’ll grow more and get a proper uni experience.
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Mish2000
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(Original post by Arisapo)
I’ve lived in Bristol all my life so can give you a pretty good perspective.

Bristol’s an amazing city — especially from a student perspective. Where the uni is located is beautiful, the nightlife is brilliant and for a student experience, I can’t think of many better places.

Also, the independence part is something I feel you need. I disagree with an above poster about “the uni experience” not mattering — living away from home gives you the chance to mature, find independence and experience a new city without the constant suffocation of family and parents. Staying at home and being 15 minutes away would seem like going to school to me.

UCL is a very good uni don’t get me wrong, but there’s not a lot in it between UCL and Bristol, especially for something like History. An employer won’t mind if you choose one over the other as they’re both prestigious and academic. It’s not like you’re choosing between UCL and Bangor or something.

If you’re really concerned with saving money, then go to UCL. Personally I’d advise Bristol though as not only is it an amazing city but you’ll grow more and get a proper uni experience.
Thank you that was very helpful hearing from someone who lives there.

Since the beginning I have been leaning towards Bristol anyway it's just that a lot of people have kept reminding me about money. I told my brother I don't care about money so much but he usually tells me I'm gonna regret it.

In any case I still have a few days to decide I guess.
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Arisapo
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(Original post by Mish2000)
Thank you that was very helpful hearing from someone who lives there.

Since the beginning I have been leaning towards Bristol anyway it's just that a lot of people have kept reminding me about money. I told my brother I don't care about money so much but he usually tells me I'm gonna regret it.

In any case I still have a few days to decide I guess.
I’d imagine that around 90% students that go to university move away from home.

Worry about money later, you get the maintenance loan and tuition fees paid and if you go to UCL you’d get those anyway.

You’ll save money on accommodation, food and whatever but would you rather save money or mature and earn invaluable experiences?

Trust me, go to Bristol.
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Wired_1800
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(Original post by Mish2000)
I've got offers from both UCL and Bristol to start studying History this year and both of them have the same grade requirements for me to get in.

I live in London and UCL is only about 15 minutes away from where I live. I also already have a job (I've been working on a gap year) and so I would be saving a huge amount of money, plus not having to take out the maintenance loan. My parents don't charge me for anything at home so I essentially have zero costs whilst I'm earning money I could easily save lots of money, buy a car, move out after etc...

But then I'm also quite keen to move out to Bristol when I go to study. Some people tell me that it's a good learning experience and currently I have several siblings here so not much space or freedom at home and I was hoping I would be able to get that at uni.

I was keen to go to Bristol but my older brother (who is studying outside of London) keeps telling me to stay because he thinks I'll just be wasting money and he keeps telling me that UCL has a good name and reputation if I tell people that I studied there in the future.

I only have until 1st May to firm my choice and I'm still not sure what to do.
Go to UCL.
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returnmigrant
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(Original post by Wired_1800)
Go to UCL.
Why.
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Wired_1800
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(Original post by returnmigrant)
Why.
This is a personal opinion:

1. University: UCL is a better overall university than Bristol. It has stronger academics and arguably brighter students. The graduate prospects may even be better than Bristol.

2. Location: UCL is located in London with all the culture, diversity, nightlife, experiences etc. Bristol is located in Bristol.

3. Social life: UCL’s social life is two-fold: one from the uni and the second from London. Also, you will be part of a wider uni network of students including LSE, Kings, SOAS, Imperial etc. So you have a city with very strong student experience.

4. Cost: This one is a bad one. London is ridiculously expensive and arguably more expensive than Bristol.

I understand that you live in London and like Bristol but put yourself in another situation. Imagine your friend is asking you to choose between Bristol and UCL, which one do you select?
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Notoriety
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Uni experience, man.
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Tianaberri123
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I would reccomend you go to UCL as it has a better ranking therefore if you achieve a good grade at the end of your degree employers will look at that and see the good uni you came from! I’m not saying Bristol is not a good uni tho but I think you should think about your future trust me london has a great night life and in some areas is very student with English students and many international! Take the advantage of living in London xx
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Arisapo
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(Original post by Tianaberri123)
I would reccomend you go to UCL as it has a better ranking therefore if you achieve a good grade at the end of your degree employers will look at that and see the good uni you came from! I’m not saying Bristol is not a good uni tho but I think you should think about your future trust me london has a great night life and in some areas is very student with English students and many international! Take the advantage of living in London xx
a) They’re already from London so probably bored
of the nightlife and “the advantage of living in London”.

b) No employer will look at a history degree and think “wow this person went to UCL over Bristol, I must have them” — they’re two prestigious, academic unis and it doesn’t make a difference really.
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Arisapo
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(Original post by Wired_1800)
This is a personal opinion:

1. University: UCL is a better overall university than Bristol. It has stronger academics and arguably brighter students. The graduate prospects may even be better than Bristol.

2. Location: UCL is located in London with all the culture, diversity, nightlife, experiences etc. Bristol is located in Bristol.

3. Social life: UCL’s social life is two-fold: one from the uni and the second from London. Also, you will be part of a wider uni network of students including LSE, Kings, SOAS, Imperial etc. So you have a city with very strong student experience.

4. Cost: This one is a bad one. London is ridiculously expensive and arguably more expensive than Bristol.

I understand that you live in London and like Bristol but put yourself in another situation. Imagine your friend is asking you to choose between Bristol and UCL, which one do you select?
1) This is probably true as UCL is a very competitive university; however, I doubt any employer will really care which you choose as they’re both prestigious and reputable. It’s not like the OP has UCL or Aberystwyth to choose between.

2) Being only 15 minutes away from UCL, I imagine the OP has already had their fair share of the culture and “experiences”. They likely want to get away from them, not stay there.

And “Bristol is Bristol” — if you’ve been there, you’ll realise it’s a fantastic place to be a student and is full of new experiences and culture for the OP.

3) Again, with the OP being from London, the social life may be diverse or whatever, but do you really want to mix with students from 7 different universities or whatever? There’s a lot of internationals and the like but this isn’t always a plus for everyone.

Bristol also has an amazing social scene.

4) London is ridiculously expensive but you’ve just contradicted yourself by saying it’s a bad one — the OP said their parents will pay for food, they’re not paying rent etc. So living in London would be cheaper from their perspective.

Honestly, the uni experience is invaluable, to get away from home and get your own independence and freedom, without living at home and being suffocated by parents and siblings.

And if a friend asked me, I’d say Bristol over UCL because I couldn’t think of much worse than living in London for undergraduate study. Imagine the OP also wants to get away.
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Wired_1800
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(Original post by Arisapo)
1) This is probably true as UCL is a very competitive university; however, I doubt any employer will really care which you choose as they’re both prestigious and reputable. It’s not like the OP has UCL or Aberystwyth to choose between.

2) Being only 15 minutes away from UCL, I imagine the OP has already had their fair share of the culture and “experiences”. They likely want to get away from them, not stay there.

And “Bristol is Bristol” — if you’ve been there, you’ll realise it’s a fantastic place to be a student and is full of new experiences and culture for the OP.

3) Again, with the OP being from London, the social life may be diverse or whatever, but do you really want to mix with students from 7 different universities or whatever? There’s a lot of internationals and the like but this isn’t always a plus for everyone.

Bristol also has an amazing social scene.

4) London is ridiculously expensive but you’ve just contradicted yourself by saying it’s a bad one — the OP said their parents will pay for food, they’re not paying rent etc. So living in London would be cheaper from their perspective.

Honestly, the uni experience is invaluable, to get away from home and get your own independence and freedom, without living at home and being suffocated by parents and siblings.

And if a friend asked me, I’d say Bristol over UCL because I couldn’t think of much worse than living in London for undergraduate study. Imagine the OP also wants to get away.
I gave my own opinion and I don't expect anyone to agree with me.

1. We would need to look at the stats of the grads, to see what the grad prospects. I wont speak for employers about whether they would care between Bristol and UCL.

2. I don't think the culture and experiences that the OP has experienced is as a student. The student experience might be very different to the London resident one.

I have been to Bristol and I have experienced briefly the student experience there. I personally would not rate it. It is not as exciting as other cities and definitely not on par with London.

3. Some people would want the diversity and breadth of having several universities around them. Others would not. I just pointed out the breadth of universities and the experiences that can be obtained from studying in London. Some people may like to have that choice.

I don't think Bristol has an “amazing” social scene. I have been there and would not compare with other unis like Manchester, Oxford or even London.

4. I did not contradict myself. I just pointed out the cost of living in London as a student. There are other costs to living in London including social life, transportation etc.

I think living and studying in London is not for everyone. However, I believe there are loads of great opportunities that arise from studying in London esp at a top uni like UCL.
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