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St Salvators Quad, University of St Andrews
University of St Andrews

St Andrews culture(?)

I've decided to go to the uni, but I'm still worried about the 'culture' there, as in I'm coming from a working class background and I've heard some bad things about the classism there. If anyone had any insights that would be good!
Also I'm going in blind really as I couldn't afford to get to the town for the offer day, so general advice is also good!
Original post by Anonymous
I've decided to go to the uni, but I'm still worried about the 'culture' there, as in I'm coming from a working class background and I've heard some bad things about the classism there. If anyone had any insights that would be good!
Also I'm going in blind really as I couldn't afford to get to the town for the offer day, so general advice is also good!

There's a big golfing culture in St Andrews, and its an "oxbridge reject" uni so the private school count will probably be quite high, there are also a lot of Americans, not too sure why, but there are lots, and apparently some are very lovely. What's important is, when you're applying to competative universities you're always going to be competing with privately educated kids who's parents have essentially paid for their A-Levels. They're everywhere. That's why its so important that when you get to Uni you get involved in clubs through the Student Union because that's where you'll meet to people who think like you do. Those first few weeks are gonna be tough because you'll be a treck from home and you won't know anyone, but persevere, put yourself out there, and you'll find your people! You'll know who to avoid, they tend to stick out like sore thumbs! (St Andrews does have an alarmingly high student satisfaction rate, so I'm sure you'll be in good hands)
St Salvators Quad, University of St Andrews
University of St Andrews
Original post by Anonymous
I've decided to go to the uni, but I'm still worried about the 'culture' there, as in I'm coming from a working class background and I've heard some bad things about the classism there. If anyone had any insights that would be good!
Also I'm going in blind really as I couldn't afford to get to the town for the offer day, so general advice is also good!


I have been worried about this too. I’m a student from NI and I come from a working class background as well. I don’t know anyone going and I have heard about the stereotypes. I am still debating whether to go as another issue is that the accommodation and living cost is expensive. I am unable to do the joint subject study that st andrews offers at my local university, therefore I would have to settle in terms of degree. Staying at home, however, would be cheaper. It’s such a hard decision to be honest I don’t know what to do
Original post by Anonymous
I have been worried about this too. I’m a student from NI and I come from a working class background as well. I don’t know anyone going and I have heard about the stereotypes. I am still debating whether to go as another issue is that the accommodation and living cost is expensive. I am unable to do the joint subject study that st andrews offers at my local university, therefore I would have to settle in terms of degree. Staying at home, however, would be cheaper. It’s such a hard decision to be honest I don’t know what to do


I don’t think you should settle for a course, as you might regret it. You will get maintenance loans ( could be a bit more than normal if you come from a lower income) and can find a part time job in the area before you start, to support yourself.
Reply 4
Don't be put off by the stereotypes. Yes there are students that fit the stereotypes but there are many more that don't. A large proportion of the Scottish students get in with contextual flags, so typically lower income. As a previous poster has said, you just need to get out there and find like minded people. On accommodation, yes it can be tricky but it is getting easier now that the COVID years students are graduating. Again, easier if you make friends through clubs and find fourth years who are graduating and giving up flats. Others choose to live in Dundee which is cheaper but you have to commute. I'd definitely recommend a visit. But if you can't, then do research where you are picking. It's a small town. Don't go if you want the city student experience. It can be really sociable but mostly through student societies/flat parties - not clubbing!
I am also a NI student from a lower income family. I've applied to St Andrews, waiting to receive an offer back. I hope you have applied for the St Andrews access scholarship the deadline is today at 11:59 pm. You can get up to about £4000 per year grant for maintenance from the uni. I wouldn't be concerned about classism - there will certainly be well off people there, as with any uni, but I don't think that reputation should stand as much any more, given that everyone can access tuition fee loans, and the difference in cost of living is not major. I imagine there will be a good mix of economic classes.

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