pls help me! need opinions on some of those universities

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lexchsr
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Thanks for taking your time to help me!! I'm an international student and, as suggested on many websites, I did my research and choose 5 universities that I would like to apply for an undergraduate course. My average grades are 80 and I've been doing a lot of voluntary work and getting as many certificates as I can. Can someone please help me form a more solid opinion on them, based on British people's opinions?
1- York
2- Exeter
3- UEA
4- Surrey
5- Birmingham

(please keep in mind that I'll apply for a scholarship and I also don't have any financial support. I'll find myself a job What I'm mostly looking for is: how good are they compared to each other, or even to other unis, how's the student life in each city and if I'll be able to pay them with a scholarship and a part-time job)
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MindMax2000
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(Original post by lexchsr)
Thanks for taking your time to help me!! I'm an international student and, as suggested on many websites, I did my research and choose 5 universities that I would like to apply for an undergraduate course. My average grades are 80 and I've been doing a lot of voluntary work and getting as many certificates as I can. Can someone please help me form a more solid opinion on them, based on British people's opinions?
1- York
2- Exeter
3- UEA
4- Surrey
5- Birmingham

(please keep in mind that I'll apply for a scholarship and I also don't have any financial support. I'll find myself a job What I'm mostly looking for is: how good are they compared to each other, or even to other unis, how's the student life in each city and if I'll be able to pay them with a scholarship and a part-time job)
International fees will be different, and usually in the £20k. I don't think you would be able to cover much of that with a part time job. At most, a part time job would pay for basic living expenses.

In terms of reputation, I'd say Exeter, York, Birmingham, UEA, then Surrey in that order. Of course that is in my opinion.
They all usually ask for high grades in their degree courses, so it's not likely you will get away with applying with low grades.

Exeter, York, and Birmingham are part of the Russell Group, known for their reputation in research. The universities tend to be high in the rankings, so you shouldn't have that much trouble finding a place in research after uni if that's what you want (depending on competition and funding of course).

In terms of student life, I only know of the locations for UEA (Norwich), York, and Birmingham.
Birmingham is a large city, so you get all sorts (good and bad). There's also a curry house that is reknown for its curry in the country there.
UEA is quaint, but it's more like a large town than a city. The concentration of night life either happens on Prince of Wales Road or the LCR on student campus. It's a fun uni in my opinion.
York is more like a small town. The surrounding castle wall is interesting architecture, but not much beyond that.
Student life will also depend on what you are looking for.

The rule of thumb is, the further up north it is (and ideally away from London), the cheaper it usually gets. I haven't checked out the cost of living in York, but it shouldn't be that bad.

Surrey is particularly close to London, but I've heard stories of how you get poor and rich people there, so it's a mix bag.
Living in Norwich is kind of sustainable. I haven't checked the prices since I've last been there, but you can kind of get rooms in the £200-300 per month range. If you have access to a car, then you can drive to the supermarkets. Otherwise the campus shops should be OK for low prices. Failing that, there's a petrol station that's part of a supermarket chain (Tesco's) just outside of campus where you can buy basic groceries from.

Just out of interest, which country are you from? The mix of students that go to UEA can usually be a good mix of international and British.
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Muttley79
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(Original post by lexchsr)
Thanks for taking your time to help me!! I'm an international student and, as suggested on many websites, I did my research and choose 5 universities that I would like to apply for an undergraduate course. My average grades are 80 and I've been doing a lot of voluntary work and getting as many certificates as I can. Can someone please help me form a more solid opinion on them, based on British people's opinions?
1- York
2- Exeter
3- UEA
4- Surrey
5- Birmingham

(please keep in mind that I'll apply for a scholarship and I also don't have any financial support. I'll find myself a job What I'm mostly looking for is: how good are they compared to each other, or even to other unis, how's the student life in each city and if I'll be able to pay them with a scholarship and a part-time job)
Which degree are you thinking of?
York - small historic city, well-regarded, it will be colder up North but a bit cheaper to live
Exeter - middle-sized city, well-regarded, it has a beautiful campus, warmer climate {has an INTO centre offfering pre-uni courses for overseas students]
UEA is in Norwich which is a bit remote - not particularly rated
Surrey - Guildford is samll and full of traffic - not as well-regarded, expensive to live as in London commuting area
Birmingham - very large city, well-regarded, in the Midlands so colder than Exeter and more crime

Look up degree costs at each
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harrysbar
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(Original post by lexchsr)
Thanks for taking your time to help me!! I'm an international student and, as suggested on many websites, I did my research and choose 5 universities that I would like to apply for an undergraduate course. My average grades are 80 and I've been doing a lot of voluntary work and getting as many certificates as I can. Can someone please help me form a more solid opinion on them, based on British people's opinions?
1- York
2- Exeter
3- UEA
4- Surrey
5- Birmingham(please keep in mind that I'll apply for a scholarship and I also don't have any financial support. I'll find myself a job What I'm mostly looking for is: how good are they compared to each other, or even to other unis, how's the student life in each city and if I'll be able to pay them with a scholarship and a part-time job)
It depends what you want - if you want an attractive city it's York, Exeter or UEA (Norwich).

If cost of living, rent etc is a factor, York or UEA are better - Birmingham can also be cheap but only if you choose to live in a poor area with lots of crime. Student life should be good at all of them - possibly Surrey the least because it is the smallest and Guildford isn't really a student city plus very expensive area.
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University of Surrey Student Rep
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(Original post by lexchsr)
Thanks for taking your time to help me!! I'm an international student and, as suggested on many websites, I did my research and choose 5 universities that I would like to apply for an undergraduate course. My average grades are 80 and I've been doing a lot of voluntary work and getting as many certificates as I can. Can someone please help me form a more solid opinion on them, based on British people's opinions?
1- York
2- Exeter
3- UEA
4- Surrey
5- Birmingham

(please keep in mind that I'll apply for a scholarship and I also don't have any financial support. I'll find myself a job What I'm mostly looking for is: how good are they compared to each other, or even to other unis, how's the student life in each city and if I'll be able to pay them with a scholarship and a part-time job)
Hi there,

It's great to hear you are thinking of applying to Surrey! Hopefully I can be of some help as I am a second year psychology student at Surrey

To start off with ill talk a little bit about accommodation. There is different accommodation bands that range from cheapest (A) to the more expensive band F. When you apply for accommodation you can put down your preference on what band you would like and that way can choose a room depending on the finances you have. Although the preferences aren't guaranteed there isn't much price difference between lower priced bands compared to higher bands. Please see this link for more information and prices: https://www.surrey.ac.uk/accommodation. As for second year accommodation, renting from a private landlord is expensive however I believe that's the case in most university towns. As long as you manage your money, loan etc then you should be able to rent from a private landlord. If not then you can always apply for uni accommodation again or the university can help you find accommodation I went through the university to find my home from second year as the university managed some properties. This was a bit cheaper than renting from a landlord and the deposit was only £250. Unfortunately the university managed properties will not be running from this year however they can help you in terms of looking at contracts, supporting you when looking for accommodation, things like that.

As for food shopping, there is a Tesco nearby and usually I spend about £20 on a food shop each week which isn't too bad. As long as you're being smart with your money then you should be able to have enough finances for the week. My maintenance loan didn't cover my accommodation costs so I did find a part time job to give me some extra money and also enabled me to make new friends outside of university.

As for transport, the University is about a 20 minute walk from Guildford town centre and 10 minute bus journey which has a variety of shops and many restaurants! My favourites are Positano and La Casita, so if you end up in Surrey make sure to check these out. These restaurants are affordable and really nice! There is also the chains of restaurants like Zizzis, Wagamamas, Nandos, Five Guys etc, so there is a huge variety with alot of international cuisine too. What I loved about Surrey is that the Uni isn't far from London. It is about a 34 minute train journey making trips to London quick and efficient. There is also a big Tesco that is about a 3-5 minute bus journey or 10 minute walk so it is easy to pick up your shopping for the week. The buses do come very regularly as there is a service that goes straight through the accommodation to university and to town. I have found it easy to get around on food or by bus without a car! As for shops, like I said there is a variety from high end, to normal high street shops.

As for nightlife, there is a nightclub on campus called Rubix which is always putting on great events each week. With COVID Rubix has been put on hold, however hopefully it will make a return soon! The town centre night life is quieter compared to other unis however is still a good fun environment
I have felt really safe in Guildford, I would always make sure to go home with friends and the bus drivers were all very friendly and made sure we go home safe as there is a night bus that runs through campus meaning we can get home form nights out safely

When it comes to academia in the Psychology department, the department has always maintained a high standard of teaching and support. I feel as though I am really benefitting from the teaching here and learning new things. The lecturers have always been quick in helping me. They also have contact hours which you can attend and ask them any questions you may have. Although this is in the Psychology department, I am sure the teaching and support in your department would be the same! I had around 13 contact hours a week in year one, I liked this as I had time to do my own thing, to study and also to work a part time job to earn some money. My lecturers use a range of PowerPoint slides but incorporate videos and questions to keep us engaged, I like this as it keeps my interested. The library is massive with 4 floors allowing you to find a quiet place to study. For other support around the uni, there is a health and wellbeing centre which can help with any needs such as sexual health, mental health or any queries you may have. There is also a Career service team that can help with CVs and cover letters and even interviews.

I hope this helps give you a rough idea of what Surrey is like. Please let me know if you have any other questions!


Becca
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University of York
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(Original post by lexchsr)
Thanks for taking your time to help me!! I'm an international student and, as suggested on many websites, I did my research and choose 5 universities that I would like to apply for an undergraduate course. My average grades are 80 and I've been doing a lot of voluntary work and getting as many certificates as I can. Can someone please help me form a more solid opinion on them, based on British people's opinions?
1- York
2- Exeter
3- UEA
4- Surrey
5- Birmingham

(please keep in mind that I'll apply for a scholarship and I also don't have any financial support. I'll find myself a job What I'm mostly looking for is: how good are they compared to each other, or even to other unis, how's the student life in each city and if I'll be able to pay them with a scholarship and a part-time job)
Hi there!

First of all, I hope you're excited to come to study in the UK! I was an international student myself at York and I still remember my first couple of weeks and how exciting it was to move to a completely new place

Those are all really fantastic unis and I would say it very much depends on the course you want to do. There is so much I could tell you about York, since I studied here myself, but I don't want to overload you with information.

To start off, I'd suggest you have a look at vlogs made by students since that's a really good way of getting information in a not-so-boring way

We recently uploaded some vlogs with FAQs about student life, studying at York, working part-time as a student and so on: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ODk...7_PxKVcadv4QUP On this channel you will also find more specific videos about scholarships, coming to York as an international student...etc.

Most unis also run a blog with all posts written entirely by students. You can find blog posts on topics you want to know more about in relation to finance, your course, the student experience and so on. Here is the York Student Blog: https://blogs.york.ac.uk/student-voices/

And once you have looked over this info and have more specific questions, I would suggest you talk to some actual student studying the course you'd like to do Again, most universities have a 'chat with our students' webpage, where you can directly ask questions and get an idea of what it may be like for you. This is what the York student chat looks like: https://www.york.ac.uk/study/chat/

All in all, all the universities on your list are great, and hopefully the tips above will help you choose the one that is right for you

If there is anything else I can help with, feel free to let me know here or via DMs.



Good luck!

Anastasia
Graduate Ambassador
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Nirjur
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If you’re concerned with rankings:
Exeter - 12th (1 place lower from last year)
Birmingham - 13th (= to last year)
York - 22nd (8 places up from last year)
UEA - 25th (4 places down)
Surrey 34th (11 places down from last year)

Obviously make your decision based on the university and course, but i added these to make your life a little easier. The rankings are judged by entry standards, student satisfaction etc.
This is an overall ranking as you haven’t specified which subject you wish to study.

https://www.thecompleteuniversitygui...ables/rankings
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KathM
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(Original post by MindMax2000)
International fees will be different, and usually in the £20k. I don't think you would be able to cover much of that with a part time job. At most, a part time job would pay for basic living expenses.

In terms of reputation, I'd say Exeter, York, Birmingham, UEA, then Surrey in that order. Of course that is in my opinion.
They all usually ask for high grades in their degree courses, so it's not likely you will get away with applying with low grades.

Exeter, York, and Birmingham are part of the Russell Group, known for their reputation in research. The universities tend to be high in the rankings, so you shouldn't have that much trouble finding a place in research after uni if that's what you want (depending on competition and funding of course).

In terms of student life, I only know of the locations for UEA (Norwich), York, and Birmingham.
Birmingham is a large city, so you get all sorts (good and bad). There's also a curry house that is reknown for its curry in the country there.
UEA is quaint, but it's more like a large town than a city. The concentration of night life either happens on Prince of Wales Road or the LCR on student campus. It's a fun uni in my opinion.
York is more like a small town. The surrounding castle wall is interesting architecture, but not much beyond that.
Student life will also depend on what you are looking for.

The rule of thumb is, the further up north it is (and ideally away from London), the cheaper it usually gets. I haven't checked out the cost of living in York, but it shouldn't be that bad.

Surrey is particularly close to London, but I've heard stories of how you get poor and rich people there, so it's a mix bag.
Living in Norwich is kind of sustainable. I haven't checked the prices since I've last been there, but you can kind of get rooms in the £200-300 per month range. If you have access to a car, then you can drive to the supermarkets. Otherwise the campus shops should be OK for low prices. Failing that, there's a petrol station that's part of a supermarket chain (Tesco's) just outside of campus where you can buy basic groceries from.

Just out of interest, which country are you from? The mix of students that go to UEA can usually be a good mix of international and British.
I have a child at Exeter - an international student. It is a very cliquey place (halls of residence) and rather like a large private boarding school. The culture is mundane and pretentious. I would not say it is friendly or socially open. I wish it was a larger, more international, less parochial environment. Look at the course you want to study and the culture of the school. The former will be hard to succeed at if the latter doesn't suit you. The University is terribly disorganised - from tutors to administration. Exeter is a small town.
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A_J_B
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(Original post by Nirjur)
If you’re concerned with rankings:
Exeter - 12th (1 place lower from last year)
Birmingham - 13th (= to last year)
York - 22nd (8 places up from last year)
UEA - 25th (4 places down)
Surrey 34th (11 places down from last year)

Obviously make your decision based on the university and course, but i added these to make your life a little easier. The rankings are judged by entry standards, student satisfaction etc.
This is an overall ranking as you haven’t specified which subject you wish to study.

https://www.thecompleteuniversitygui...ables/rankings
Rankings are pretty ambiguous. Birmingham was 87th in the qs world rankings and Exeter was 163rd-york was 500th- UEA was 333rd.
Birmingham has been named the most targeted university for the top 100 employers of the UK-this is a potentially important point to consider if you are looking for a job in the UK after graduating.
The social life you would get in Bham as an international student is also great- I'm not sure how places like far less diverse places Exeter would even compare to that. Obviously with every big city like London/Bham there will be increased crime but if you are sensible enough you should have no problem.

Edit: Just saw you want to work as well- being in a big city like Birmingham would also mean more job opportunities


(Original post by lexchsr)
Thanks for taking your time to help me!! I'm an international student and, as suggested on many websites, I did my research and choose 5 universities that I would like to apply for an undergraduate course. My average grades are 80 and I've been doing a lot of voluntary work and getting as many certificates as I can. Can someone please help me form a more solid opinion on them, based on British people's opinions?
1- York
2- Exeter
3- UEA
4- Surrey
5- Birmingham

(please keep in mind that I'll apply for a scholarship and I also don't have any financial support. I'll find myself a job What I'm mostly looking for is: how good are they compared to each other, or even to other unis, how's the student life in each city and if I'll be able to pay them with a scholarship and a part-time job)
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Sinnoh
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(Original post by KathM)
I have a child at Exeter - an international student. It is a very cliquey place (halls of residence) and rather like a large private boarding school. The culture is mundane and pretentious. I would not say it is friendly or socially open. I wish it was a larger, more international, less parochial environment. Look at the course you want to study and the culture of the school. The former will be hard to succeed at if the latter doesn't suit you. The University is terribly disorganised - from tutors to administration. Exeter is a small town.
every university has halls of residence, Exeter isn't unique in that.
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KathM
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(Original post by Muttley79)
Which degree are you thinking of?
York - small historic city, well-regarded, it will be colder up North but a bit cheaper to live
Exeter - middle-sized city, well-regarded, it has a beautiful campus, warmer climate {has an INTO centre offfering pre-uni courses for overseas students]
UEA is in Norwich which is a bit remote - not particularly rated
Surrey - Guildford is samll and full of traffic - not as well-regarded, expensive to live as in London commuting area
Birmingham - very large city, well-regarded, in the Midlands so colder than Exeter and more crime

Look up degree costs at each
Also - jobs are very hard to find in small towns.....
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KathM
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(Original post by Sinnoh)
every university has halls of residence, Exeter isn't unique in that.
of course they do - I can only comment on our experience.
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University of Surrey Student Rep
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(Original post by lexchsr)
Thanks for taking your time to help me!! I'm an international student and, as suggested on many websites, I did my research and choose 5 universities that I would like to apply for an undergraduate course. My average grades are 80 and I've been doing a lot of voluntary work and getting as many certificates as I can. Can someone please help me form a more solid opinion on them, based on British people's opinions?
1- York
2- Exeter
3- UEA
4- Surrey
5- Birmingham

(please keep in mind that I'll apply for a scholarship and I also don't have any financial support. I'll find myself a job What I'm mostly looking for is: how good are they compared to each other, or even to other unis, how's the student life in each city and if I'll be able to pay them with a scholarship and a part-time job)
To introduce myself – I’m Joao, an Economics student from the University of Surrey on placement at Defra (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) this year and I'm enjoying it a lot. I have some interesting subjects with really good lecturers (obviously depends on the module and lecturers you have). Surrey is 8th in the UK for business and economics for example. Rankings fluctuate all the time I honestly wouldn’t worry

The campus is lovely. Surrey is known to put a lot of emphasis on the social life of students and always care about how you spend your free time at university. The student union offers more than 140 societies based on any hobbies and interests’ students have and clubs for all kinds of sport that a student might want to take up. And even with covid restrictions, the union managed to organise one of the biggest covid-safe university events in the country! During my first year, I spent a lot of time training as part of the University’s rowing team and I had amazing time there. So, if you are into sports that is something you should definitively consider.

If I were you I would consider doing a placement year. Placement provides students with a unique opportunity to gain skills specific to their subject or industry of choice as well as the employability skills required for real-life work so I would suggest applying for a sandwich degree. If you do not manage to secure one you simply go straight to the 3rd year.

Our Employability and Careers team will encourage you to be proactive and apply for your industry placement yourself, by writing a CV and cover letter. More importantly, your school or department will appoint a senior tutor for Professional Training who will work with you from the application process through to the completion of your placement. This is an academic member of staff with responsibility for delivering the Professional Training scheme and supporting you at all stages of the journey.

The university also provides a Professional Training coaching scheme, where you can be paired with a student who has recently returned from their placement. That way you will have friendly support from someone who went through the same placement-seeking process and who will prepare you for the world of work.
Also, as some placements abroad may involve learning and communicate in a language other than English, the university has support available to help you develop your language skills.

I think this may help you.

All you need to know about studying economics at Surrey:
https://blogs.surrey.ac.uk/student-e...ics-in-surrey/

Study and work abroad:
https://www.surrey.ac.uk/student-exchanges/study-abroad

More than 140 societies and clubs to join:
https://blogs.surrey.ac.uk/bulgariab...clubs-to-join/

Joao
Economics
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Muttley79
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(Original post by KathM)
I have a child at Exeter -
Which hall? Exeter has loads and has a huge INTO centre full of interntional students.
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Muttley79
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(Original post by KathM)
Also - jobs are very hard to find in small towns.....
Why are you replying to me? I'm not the OP.
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swanseajack1
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(Original post by KathM)
I have a child at Exeter - an international student. It is a very cliquey place (halls of residence) and rather like a large private boarding school. The culture is mundane and pretentious. I would not say it is friendly or socially open. I wish it was a larger, more international, less parochial environment. Look at the course you want to study and the culture of the school. The former will be hard to succeed at if the latter doesn't suit you. The University is terribly disorganised - from tutors to administration. Exeter is a small town.
As far as Halls at Exeter there are different types from places like Holland Hall which house many public school students to place like St Germans which have mostly state educated students. The students in my sons hall used to meet twice weekly for drinks before going onto the Lemi. There werent students excluded unless they chose not to take part
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