Ask a current Aberdeen student (English - Sociology)

Watch
Anonymous #1
#1
Report Thread starter 6 months ago
#1
Hi guys!

I'm a current English and Sociology student at Aberdeen University and because the official "Ask a current student" is pretty old and not really used anymore, I thought I'd start my own for you guys!

Ask me anything about my course, the university, Aberdeen city, Scotland (I'm an EU student), student life, accommodation, etc. and I'll do my best to help

Please note that this is in no way affiliated with the university directly - I'm basically just bored in quarantine and I thought I'd help some of you out if I can

Ask away!
0
reply
Dejamaria123
Badges: 4
Rep:
?
#2
Report 6 months ago
#2
Hi, I'm so glad to see this as I've applied to do this course next year. Anything about the course I would appreciate- what did you like, what you didn't like, things you wish you knew before starting and what the lecturers are like. If theres anything else please feel free to add on! Also, what tyoe of accomodation are you in? I'll be moving to Scotland from England, so any advice with that would be greatly appreciated also
0
reply
Anonymous #1
#3
Report Thread starter 6 months ago
#3
(Original post by Dejamaria123)
Hi, I'm so glad to see this as I've applied to do this course next year. Anything about the course I would appreciate- what did you like, what you didn't like, things you wish you knew before starting and what the lecturers are like. If theres anything else please feel free to add on! Also, what tyoe of accomodation are you in? I'll be moving to Scotland from England, so any advice with that would be greatly appreciated also
Hi
I'm not sure whether you applied to study both Sociology and English or just one of them, but I'll just talk a little bit about both. Maybe it'll help someone else as well

So for both English and Sociology we had two lectures per week and one tutorial. The tutorials are a little like school, so you're with up to 15 other people on average (most of my tutorials only had around 8 people though), and they are basically there for you to ask questions, interact with peers and just to facilitate understanding. You are expected to prepare for the tutorials, so for Sociology we had a course reader with articles and studies that we have to read for the tutorial. It was usually around 20 pages per article, sometimes more, and we had to read two on average. But in a way, the tutorials are also unlike school, because no one will hold you accountable if you don't prepare. Some courses take participation grades, but even so - if you don't do the reading, no tutor will tell you off or anything, because it's completely your choice whether you want to do it or not.
For English, the tutorials are a little different. We studied one text per week, so usually we had to read a book a week in preparation for the tutorial, but we also studied some poetry and short stories - and then we had like 4 short stories in that one week for example. In the tutorials you discuss the book, the main themes, and it's really just like a group discussion. Sometimes the tutor will have prepared questions, sometimes they will have an extract from the book, and sometimes you're just free to talk amongst each other. What I really liked about the tutorials is that everything you say is valid (as long as it's not just some random stuff of course).
There was one tutorial where more than half of us hadn't finished the book because we really didn't like it, and that was valid too, and we had a big discussion about why exactly we didn't like it, what could've made it better, whether we identified with the characters and why/why not, etc.

The lectures in both courses are just like an introduction to the topic basically. So if you want to get top marks in your essays or the exam, you need to do your own research. Unlike in school, just learning the stuff covered by the professors will only get you a high C maybe.
The lectures in English are usually about both the author and the historical/social context, and themes, motives, language, etc. But because English doesn't have exams (like Sociology does), you don't need to learn that stuff by heart or anything. It's just some background information for you to do your essays.

What I also love is that in first year, the Sociology and English courses are only worth 15 credits and you have to do 60 credits per semester. Because most first year courses are worth 15 credits, you can/have to choose two additional courses. I have really broad interests, so I loved that. There are so many interesting courses as well, like Film Studies or Psychology or Anthropology, etc.

Because you also asked about the lecturers - in my experience, all the lecturers were really helpful at all times and just really enthusiastic about their course/subject. Whenever I sent a lecturer or a tutor an email, they'd get back to me within 2 days or so. Obviously it varies from person to person and it depends on how busy they are, but I only had positive experiences. And all the lecturers, tutors, and the entire staff in general are really friendly and welcoming.

About accommodation - I obviously don't know whether coronavirus will change anything about on-campus teaching like if it'll all be moved online, or what it'll look like if on-campus teaching does happen, but just speaking from my experience, I'd definitely recommend staying in Hillhead in your first year. Hillhead is the university's official student accommodation. There are several different buildings with different types of living arrangements and varying rent. The cheapest are Fyfe House, Adam Smith and Wavell at around 360 per month. I stayed in Fyfe, and I really liked it. Unlike the more expensive buildings, you're not in a flat but you share a kitchen with 5-7 people from your floor, and a bathroom and showers with half your floor. There are also cleaning staff cleaning the kitchens and the bathrooms every other day I think (maybe less often, but it definitely looks clean most of the time).
Hillhead is perfect for first years because it's mostly freshers staying there, so it's perfect to meet new people and make friends. Hillhead also organised free activities throughout the entire year, like movie nights, yoga, donut nights, etc.
Hillhead is also really close to the beach and it takes like 10-15 minutes to walk to uni, so I'd definitely recommend Hillhead for your first year

About moving out from home: I don't really know how to help with that because I'd travelled for a year before going to uni, so I wasn't homesick at all and I just liked the change to be honest.

But if you have any specific questions related to that, I'll do my best to answer them

Let me know if there's anything else you want me to tell you about!
2
reply
Dejamaria123
Badges: 4
Rep:
?
#4
Report 6 months ago
#4
(Original post by Anonymous)
Hi
I'm not sure whether you applied to study both Sociology and English or just one of them, but I'll just talk a little bit about both. Maybe it'll help someone else as well

So for both English and Sociology we had two lectures per week and one tutorial. The tutorials are a little like school, so you're with up to 15 other people on average (most of my tutorials only had around 8 people though), and they are basically there for you to ask questions, interact with peers and just to facilitate understanding. You are expected to prepare for the tutorials, so for Sociology we had a course reader with articles and studies that we have to read for the tutorial. It was usually around 20 pages per article, sometimes more, and we had to read two on average. But in a way, the tutorials are also unlike school, because no one will hold you accountable if you don't prepare. Some courses take participation grades, but even so - if you don't do the reading, no tutor will tell you off or anything, because it's completely your choice whether you want to do it or not.
For English, the tutorials are a little different. We studied one text per week, so usually we had to read a book a week in preparation for the tutorial, but we also studied some poetry and short stories - and then we had like 4 short stories in that one week for example. In the tutorials you discuss the book, the main themes, and it's really just like a group discussion. Sometimes the tutor will have prepared questions, sometimes they will have an extract from the book, and sometimes you're just free to talk amongst each other. What I really liked about the tutorials is that everything you say is valid (as long as it's not just some random stuff of course).
There was one tutorial where more than half of us hadn't finished the book because we really didn't like it, and that was valid too, and we had a big discussion about why exactly we didn't like it, what could've made it better, whether we identified with the characters and why/why not, etc.

The lectures in both courses are just like an introduction to the topic basically. So if you want to get top marks in your essays or the exam, you need to do your own research. Unlike in school, just learning the stuff covered by the professors will only get you a high C maybe.
The lectures in English are usually about both the author and the historical/social context, and themes, motives, language, etc. But because English doesn't have exams (like Sociology does), you don't need to learn that stuff by heart or anything. It's just some background information for you to do your essays.

What I also love is that in first year, the Sociology and English courses are only worth 15 credits and you have to do 60 credits per semester. Because most first year courses are worth 15 credits, you can/have to choose two additional courses. I have really broad interests, so I loved that. There are so many interesting courses as well, like Film Studies or Psychology or Anthropology, etc.

Because you also asked about the lecturers - in my experience, all the lecturers were really helpful at all times and just really enthusiastic about their course/subject. Whenever I sent a lecturer or a tutor an email, they'd get back to me within 2 days or so. Obviously it varies from person to person and it depends on how busy they are, but I only had positive experiences. And all the lecturers, tutors, and the entire staff in general are really friendly and welcoming.

About accommodation - I obviously don't know whether coronavirus will change anything about on-campus teaching like if it'll all be moved online, or what it'll look like if on-campus teaching does happen, but just speaking from my experience, I'd definitely recommend staying in Hillhead in your first year. Hillhead is the university's official student accommodation. There are several different buildings with different types of living arrangements and varying rent. The cheapest are Fyfe House, Adam Smith and Wavell at around 360 per month. I stayed in Fyfe, and I really liked it. Unlike the more expensive buildings, you're not in a flat but you share a kitchen with 5-7 people from your floor, and a bathroom and showers with half your floor. There are also cleaning staff cleaning the kitchens and the bathrooms every other day I think (maybe less often, but it definitely looks clean most of the time).
Hillhead is perfect for first years because it's mostly freshers staying there, so it's perfect to meet new people and make friends. Hillhead also organised free activities throughout the entire year, like movie nights, yoga, donut nights, etc.
Hillhead is also really close to the beach and it takes like 10-15 minutes to walk to uni, so I'd definitely recommend Hillhead for your first year

About moving out from home: I don't really know how to help with that because I'd travelled for a year before going to uni, so I wasn't homesick at all and I just liked the change to be honest.

But if you have any specific questions related to that, I'll do my best to answer them

Let me know if there's anything else you want me to tell you about!
Thanks so much for all for the information, and I’m doing both English and Sociology so this is super helpful! If you don’t mind I have a few more questions about courses- what else did you choose to do and did you like it? And about accommodation, what other houses would you recommend from what you’ve heard, as I’m interested in a flat. There are a lot of choices for accommodation and I’m trying to get a little bit more detail about them before I decide.

Any other general advice and tips that you’ve picked up would be appreciated also
0
reply
Anonymous #1
#5
Report Thread starter 6 months ago
#5
(Original post by Dejamaria123)
Thanks so much for all for the information, and I’m doing both English and Sociology so this is super helpful! If you don’t mind I have a few more questions about courses- what else did you choose to do and did you like it? And about accommodation, what other houses would you recommend from what you’ve heard, as I’m interested in a flat. There are a lot of choices for accommodation and I’m trying to get a little bit more detail about them before I decide.

Any other general advice and tips that you’ve picked up would be appreciated also
So I chose a lot of courses actually 😅 I even made use of the extra credits, just because I have such broad interests haha

So I took a Film & Visual Culture course, French for beginners, Anthropology, Psychology, and a Philosophy course. There's a course catalogue online as well and it has all the available courses on it, so it gives you a good idea of the available stuff. They might change them a little for next term, but most of them will probably stay the same or at least be pretty similar.

I really liked the Film course and if you're doing English, I think you might like it as well. Basically we had to watch 1 feature film and 2 short movies per week (on average), and then discussed them in class. Tbh I didn't enjoy the lectures that much because they could be a little dry (a lot of technical stuff like long shots, angles, etc.), but the tutorials were really great, and it was so much fun to analyse the movies. We talked about the way actors are positioned, like in the foreground or the background and why, how the weather in movies changes and what this symbolises, etc. So it really is quite similar to English in terms of analysis 😊

French and apparently all the languages are really fast paced - we were complete beginners but we learned four tenses in just three months I think, and it was just so so much work. A lot of students have also said this, and asked for the language courses to be given 30 credits instead of 15 because 15 credits just doesn't accurately reflect the amount of work you have to put in.
Nonetheless, the course was really good and it was actually quite effective language learning - we had a speaking class with small talk in French, another one that we had to do exercises for (like homework) which was really useful, and the lectures - but the lectures were in small groups, so it was more like a tutorial in terms of size.

I also liked Anthropology - it was super interesting because we talked about things like cannibalism for example, and the readings were just really interesting imo. The lectures could be both a little dry, but a lot of them were really cool and I just loved learning about other cultures in the world. We also didn't really talk about history, because a lot of people assume that Anthropology somehow equals Archaeology, but it's really entirely different. 😊

Philosophy was also interesting - the lectures for Philosophy were amazing because the professor was just really great at explaining and we were always free to ask questions. The tutorials were also the best I had I think, because the tutor was so engaging and the discussions were just super interesting and quite deep sometimes.

As you can see, I kind of enjoyed all my courses 😅 Maybe the course catalogue will help you a little - there are also short descriptions in there, so maybe that'll give you a better idea 😊
And usually the first two weeks I think are like a "trial period", so you can theoretically change your enrolment every single day and try out 20 courses if you wanted to. I actually did that - I just selected a course that sounded interesting, enrolled, and then went to the lecture for that course. If I didn't like it, I'd just drop it and choose a new course. You can do it all online so it's really great because you can actually try them out and see if it's your thing or not.

About accommodation: I actually don't really know anything about the other houses unfortunately because all my friends were in Wavell or Fyfe. But there are some photos of the flats on the accommodation website, if you haven't already looked at those. I'd also have a look on Instagram and just search for the names of the buildings or just Hillhead in general if you want to see more accurate pictures of rooms. 😅
It obviously changes every year and this shouldn't influence your decision at all, but because you asked about anything - New Carnegie has/had a reputation of being the building for all the "rich" kids whose "daddies" pay for everything. Like I said, this might change and next year it'll be a different building, but they made quite a lot of jokes about New Carnegie students.

But if you're just looking for any flat and not specifically Hillhead, the flats next to the Sports Village are quite nice - at least the rooms are quite big and they even have some rooms with two huge windows (if you're lucky). I think they're owned by Liberty Living, but I'm not sure. And the location is really good because it literally takes like 5 minutes to walk to uni, and you're directly next to the gym if you're into sports.

Hope this helps!
If you have more questions, ask away! 😅😊
0
reply
tinox
Badges: 2
Rep:
?
#6
Report 4 months ago
#6
I heard that New Carnegie halls is the liveliest but it's too expensive. Apart from New Carnegie, which flat in Hillhead is the most social/has the most flat parties?Also, is there any halls outside of Hillhead that has a reputation for being very social?
0
reply
Anonymous #1
#7
Report Thread starter 4 months ago
#7
(Original post by tinox)
I heard that New Carnegie halls is the liveliest but it's too expensive. Apart from New Carnegie, which flat in Hillhead is the most social/has the most flat parties?Also, is there any halls outside of Hillhead that has a reputation for being very social?
Honestly, it changes every year because it obviously depends on the people living there. But even if your building is really quiet and everything, you can just go to the parties in other buildings
0
reply
kkona
Badges: 13
Rep:
?
#8
Report 3 months ago
#8
(Original post by Anonymous)
Honestly, it changes every year because it obviously depends on the people living there. But even if your building is really quiet and everything, you can just go to the parties in other buildings
im booking really late and the halls are all full except for the **** ones, will I miss out on a lot If I go to private student accomadation.I was looking at the studentroost buildings near the university. Do you think Ill miss out, like have a boring freshers week
0
reply
I-A
Badges: 6
Rep:
?
#9
Report 3 months ago
#9
(Original post by kkona)
im booking really late and the halls are all full except for the **** ones, will I miss out on a lot If I go to private student accomadation.I was looking at the studentroost buildings near the university. Do you think Ill miss out, like have a boring freshers week
I bet you consider the one I'm in **** 🥳
0
reply
Anonymous #1
#10
Report Thread starter 3 months ago
#10
(Original post by kkona)
im booking really late and the halls are all full except for the **** ones, will I miss out on a lot If I go to private student accomadation.I was looking at the studentroost buildings near the university. Do you think Ill miss out, like have a boring freshers week
Honestly, I wouldn't worry about that. I stayed in Fyfe, so the cheapest option available - probably one of the houses you think of as "sh*t" hahah
But I actually loved it! It was not bad at all, it was actually kind of great tbh. I actually think the other rooms are completely overpriced, and I really enjoyed Fyfe. The community in the house was really good as well

But either way, I think it's gonna be fine. Making friends will be a lot harder this year probably, so I think everyone will also try harder

You will be fine, wherever you stay
Just make sure to actually go to events and everything and maybe find some people who are staying in uni accommodation to make more friends ;P
0
reply
I-A
Badges: 6
Rep:
?
#11
Report 3 months ago
#11
(Original post by Anonymous)
Honestly, I wouldn't worry about that. I stayed in Fyfe, so the cheapest option available - probably one of the houses you think of as "sh*t" hahah
But I actually loved it! It was not bad at all, it was actually kind of great tbh. I actually think the other rooms are completely overpriced, and I really enjoyed Fyfe. The community in the house was really good as well

But either way, I think it's gonna be fine. Making friends will be a lot harder this year probably, so I think everyone will also try harder

You will be fine, wherever you stay
Just make sure to actually go to events and everything and maybe find some people who are staying in uni accommodation to make more friends ;P
It's great to hear you enjoyed Fyfe. That's where I'll be staying!!
0
reply
Anonymous #1
#12
Report Thread starter 3 months ago
#12
(Original post by I-A)
It's great to hear you enjoyed Fyfe. That's where I'll be staying!!
I think you're gonna love it! The rooms are actually some of the biggest in Hillhead because the beds are singles!
0
reply
X

Quick Reply

Attached files
Write a reply...
Reply
new posts
Back
to top
Latest
My Feed

See more of what you like on
The Student Room

You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

Personalise

Are you travelling in the Uni student travel window (3-9 Dec) to go home for Christmas?

Yes (70)
27.13%
No - I have already returned home (29)
11.24%
No - I plan on travelling outside these dates (54)
20.93%
No - I'm staying at my term time address over Christmas (28)
10.85%
No - I live at home during term anyway (77)
29.84%

Watched Threads

View All