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My experience studying Computer Science at Kent - Avoid.

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benjs2000
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Instead of writing a new review, I'll just provide the email I sent to the Uni to let them know I'm leaving as I think it sums it up pretty well.

For reference, I write this as a student who just achieved an 84% Distinction in my 1st Year studying Computer Science at Kent.

While I don't doubt that the University of Kent and its staff have done valuable and reputable research for their respective fields, the university falls far short of anything I'd consider acceptable for an engaging and constructive learning environment.

Staff were often arrogant, uncaring and did not listen or respond to feedback.

I remember sitting in a lecture one time, bored and frustrated. Out of interest, I created a 1 question poll for our year's group chat. It went along the lines of "Do you understand what is going on in this lecture?" More than 90% of respondents said "No", with only a handful of students saying Yes.

Another time I remember one lecturer making a crude joke about not being able to record lectures properly as he was "theoretical Computer Scientist" and was therefore unable to fix the technical issues that he had with the recordings that sometimes made them unusable. Speaking of lecture recordings, many were labelled only by date, with no effort made to label them by topic or content. However, this doesn't surprise me given I'm not even sure what the learning objective was in some cases.

Some of the modules, especially "Cloud Computing" were so fundamentally flawed in their teaching that no student feedback could seemingly save them. This was evident when students complained, and NOTHING changed. There was almost no direction, with no clear structure with regard to what we were supposed to be learning. Some of the tests given to us had questions that were almost impossible to answer due to being incredibly vague thanks to the abundance of grammatical errors. They made almost no sense in some cases.

Good academic support was the exception and not the rule. While I don't want to do a disservice to the friendly students who helped, most were only somewhat knowledgeable when it came to the programming modules and not much else. While cheating is a problem at almost every university and in many cases it's impossible to avoid, Kent was sometimes careless in enforcing rules. For example, during an in-class "test", students were allowed to leave without the examiner having even checked that they had submitted their digital test. This meant students were easily able to leave the room and just submit the test outside the room with whatever resources they needed to gain an unfair advantage on their peers. I know it happened - I was there. Again, I did make staff aware of this but they just didn't seem to care.

While I've been relentlessly critical in this email, there are a few exceptions which should not go unnoticed. While I found the HCI module slightly too abstract at times, Jason and Sally were overall fantastic and engaging lecturers. I also found David and Jacqui from "Introduction to Programming" module particularly good at explaining things in a way a student will actually understand while still being very thorough.

All in all, I found Kent to have set the bar exceedingly low for my higher education and I can't help but feel I was robbed of the £9250 I have given to your "university".
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MajorFader
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I love threads like these; very meaningful in providing help for future prospective students.

This website needs more of them.
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rendog
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(Original post by benjs2000)
Instead of writing a new review, I'll just provide the email I sent to the Uni to let them know I'm leaving as I think it sums it up pretty well.

For reference, I write this as a student who just achieved an 84% Distinction in my 1st Year studying Computer Science at Kent.

While I don't doubt that the University of Kent and its staff have done valuable and reputable research for their respective fields, the university falls far short of anything I'd consider acceptable for an engaging and constructive learning environment.

Staff were often arrogant, uncaring and did not listen or respond to feedback.

I remember sitting in a lecture one time, bored and frustrated. Out of interest, I created a 1 question poll for our year's group chat. It went along the lines of "Do you understand what is going on in this lecture?" More than 90% of respondents said "No", with only a handful of students saying Yes.

Another time I remember one lecturer making a crude joke about not being able to record lectures properly as he was "theoretical Computer Scientist" and was therefore unable to fix the technical issues that he had with the recordings that sometimes made them unusable. Speaking of lecture recordings, many were labelled only by date, with no effort made to label them by topic or content. However, this doesn't surprise me given I'm not even sure what the learning objective was in some cases.

Some of the modules, especially "Cloud Computing" were so fundamentally flawed in their teaching that no student feedback could seemingly save them. This was evident when students complained, and NOTHING changed. There was almost no direction, with no clear structure with regard to what we were supposed to be learning. Some of the tests given to us had questions that were almost impossible to answer due to being incredibly vague thanks to the abundance of grammatical errors. They made almost no sense in some cases.

Good academic support was the exception and not the rule. While I don't want to do a disservice to the friendly students who helped, most were only somewhat knowledgeable when it came to the programming modules and not much else. While cheating is a problem at almost every university and in many cases it's impossible to avoid, Kent was sometimes careless in enforcing rules. For example, during an in-class "test", students were allowed to leave without the examiner having even checked that they had submitted their digital test. This meant students were easily able to leave the room and just submit the test outside the room with whatever resources they needed to gain an unfair advantage on their peers. I know it happened - I was there. Again, I did make staff aware of this but they just didn't seem to care.

While I've been relentlessly critical in this email, there are a few exceptions which should not go unnoticed. While I found the HCI module slightly too abstract at times, Jason and Sally were overall fantastic and engaging lecturers. I also found David and Jacqui from "Introduction to Programming" module particularly good at explaining things in a way a student will actually understand while still being very thorough.

All in all, I found Kent to have set the bar exceedingly low for my higher education and I can't help but feel I was robbed of the £9250 I have given to your "university".
Hey there,

I have also just finished my first year at Kent and will be transferring out of the Uni. Are you also transferring? Was teaching and organization of the course the main reason for you leaving?
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