New mature student portal page on TSR - Help needed

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J
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#1
Report Thread starter 13 years ago
#1
We're working with DIUS (Department of Innovation, Universities and Skills) to put together a page of resources on TSR for people considering going into education as a mature student.

The page will have on it, a Google map with all the universities in the country with links to information on that university's website about entry requirements and support for mature students (assuming they have such a page on their website).

We'll have video case studies from mature students, the latest threads from this forum and any other relevant TSR articles and external links.

Something else I thought we be nice is written case studies from some of you. Anyone up for it?

At the moment in this forum there's the Introduce yourself thread I thought something like that but with some fields for people to fill in for example:

Age:

What i'm studying and where:

How I'm funding it:

previous experience:

challenges of being a mature student:

Best bits about being a mature student:


What do you think of those headings? Any others you think that would give some useful insight to someone considering being a mature student?

Let me know what you think about this lot hopefully you think its a good plan. If you think of anythign else that could be useful on this portal page in addition to what i've described above let me know.

J
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mullings1
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#2
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#2
I thinks that's an excellent idea

maybe add,

1) reasons for returning back to education as a mature student?
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ShinyApple
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#3
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#3
Mature students often worry about the following:

Finance
Children
Ability to study again
Difficulty of workload
Time management
Social activities
Where can I eat my lunch


Those are serious concerns (even the last one) of mature students. Helping them on a page to address these concerns and put their mind at ease is a great thing.
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Annie72
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#4
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#4
(Original post by mullings1)
I thinks that's an excellent idea
I agree .
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20083
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#5
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#5
sub
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J
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#6
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#6
Thats really encouraging thanks everyone. I'll add your suggestion mullings1 to the list of profile questions. Is it ok then if i just get a thread up here like the 'introduce yourself' one where people can fill in those headings if they have a chance? If anyone writes a long one and wants to have their photo included that would be nice but totally optional.

and yep can give a months sub to anyone that fills their details in mr SillyFencer assuming thats what you mean

ShinyApple good list of stuff thanks, i'll see what we have and can get to provide information on those things too. the 'ability to study again' one is interesting in particular, do you mean the worry that you've forgotten everything and will be left behind and don't know how to write an essay anymore?
Out of interest why is it difficult to find somewhere to eat lunch?
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20083
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#7
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#7
(Original post by J)
Thats really encouraging thanks everyone. I'll add your suggestion mullings1 to the list of profile questions. Is it ok then if i just get a thread up here like the 'introduce yourself' one where people can fill in those headings if they have a chance? If anyone writes a long one and wants to have their photo included that would be nice but totally optional.

and yep can give a months sub to anyone that fills their details in mr SillyFencer assuming thats what you mean

ShinyApple good list of stuff thanks, i'll see what we have and can get to provide information on those things too. the 'ability to study again' one is interesting in particular, do you mean the worry that you've forgotten everything and will be left behind and don't know how to write an essay anymore?
Out of interest why is it difficult to find somewhere to eat lunch?
:rofl: No, it wasn't... but yay! I just took a cheakily quite way to subscribe to the thread so that I can find it later.
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HESA
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#8
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#8
Why did i go back to education?
How i cope with being older than everyone else.
What i hope to gain.
How do my children/husband find this.
how this will affect my career prospects.
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ShinyApple
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#9
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#9
(Original post by J)
ShinyApple good list of stuff thanks, i'll see what we have and can get to provide information on those things too. the 'ability to study again' one is interesting in particular, do you mean the worry that you've forgotten everything and will be left behind and don't know how to write an essay anymore?
Out of interest why is it difficult to find somewhere to eat lunch?


I basically meant Study Skills. Many Mature Students have long forgotten how to write an essay, or how to use a library. Some universities offer Study Skills workshops, but some do not. Additionally, many don't know how to access these kinds of things.

Re: Lunch. MS want somewhere where they feel they belong. Many don't want to eat lunch with a bunch of 18 year olds, and don't want to go to the pub for lunch. So, where do they find somewhere quiet that they can eat lunch and maybe catch up on some reading. Well, there are places, but finding them can be hard.
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J
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#10
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#10
(Original post by ShinyApple)
I basically meant Study Skills. Many Mature Students have long forgotten how to write an essay, or how to use a library. Some universities offer Study Skills workshops, but some do not. Additionally, many don't know how to access these kinds of things.

Re: Lunch. MS want somewhere where they feel they belong. Many don't want to eat lunch with a bunch of 18 year olds, and don't want to go to the pub for lunch. So, where do they find somewhere quiet that they can eat lunch and maybe catch up on some reading. Well, there are places, but finding them can be hard.
as well as profiles from current students with the sort of headings suggested above (thanks for the new ones HESA) a 'Top tips from current mature students' could be good with the sorts of things you are putting down here ShinyApple. Want to start a new thread called that in here? I'll sticky it and then turn it into an article in a few week or two?
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moonkatie
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#11
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#11
I think it's a great idea and agree with the suggestions above.

In addition you may want to include a section on housing whilst at Univeristy as I know this can be a concern for a lot of mature students.

A section on childcare would also be useful as there is very little mention of it elsewhere on TSR
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20083
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#12
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#12
Main concerns for a lot of mature students seem to be things like:

Can I afford to be out of work to study?
Will I fit in with all these kids?
Am I too old for halls?
It's been so long since I've studied, can I cope? I've forgotten everything I learned at school.
I'll be x age by the time I leave. What prospects will I really have?
Can I apply for that scholarship, or do the young school-leavers have more of a chance?

Then you have more complicated problems such as:
I have children.
I have a mortgage.
I am engaged.
The university is too far from my whole life.
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ShinyApple
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#13
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#13
(Original post by J)
as well as profiles from current students with the sort of headings suggested above (thanks for the new ones HESA) a 'Top tips from current mature students' could be good with the sorts of things you are putting down here ShinyApple. Want to start a new thread called that in here? I'll sticky it and then turn it into an article in a few week or two?
I'll give it a whirl, though I'm meant to be revising! Haha.


(Original post by moonkatie)
I think it's a great idea and agree with the suggestions above.

In addition you may want to include a section on housing whilst at Univeristy as I know this can be a concern for a lot of mature students.

A section on childcare would also be useful as there is very little mention of it elsewhere on TSR

There's little mention of it anywhere! Not even the NUS have any idea about it. Childcare and University are not subjects that go hand in hand sadly. Basically, most universities don't provide any information and will simply expect you to provide your own care. Some are better than others though and NUS is pushing hard to get best practice examples carried through to all universities.
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Annie72
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#14
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#14
With regards to childcare......it would be good to know if any universities have on site nurseries for those mature students who have young children and their opening hours......as not all courses are 9-5. Also perhaps a topic about the financial assistance available to mature students with and without kids.

The above is just a few thoughts.....I may come up with some more later.
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ShinyApple
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#15
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#15
(Original post by Annie72)
With regards to childcare......it would be good to know if any universities have on site nurseries for those mature students who have young children and their opening hours......as not all courses are 9-5. Also perhaps a topic about the financial assistance available to mature students with and without kids.

The above is just a few thoughts.....I may come up with some more later.
Most of the best universities with childcare facilities have them primarily for staff with students taking extra places.

Financial assistance is a very very long topic. Since it varies wildly between one student's situation and the next.
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J
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#16
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#16
(Original post by ShinyApple)
I'll give it a whirl, though I'm meant to be revising! Haha.
I wouldnt want to give you an excuse for not passing so rolled the profile and tips into one

http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/show...php?p=16466289

Thanks everyone for your help with this
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moonkatie
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#17
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#17
(Original post by ShinyApple)
There's little mention of it anywhere! Not even the NUS have any idea about it. Childcare and University are not subjects that go hand in hand sadly. Basically, most universities don't provide any information and will simply expect you to provide your own care. Some are better than others though and NUS is pushing hard to get best practice examples carried through to all universities.
Ah no, I don't mean the lack of childcare provision by the University (as that's pretty much expected), but the lack of general help to students who are having to try and find childcare.

For example, good quality childcare often has a waiting list, and you need to be booking 9+ months in advance. To do so you both need to know which University you will be attending (unless you have money to waste on reserving places at all your possible destinations), and how many hours you will require. It's amazing, but sadly true, that you have to really battle with some institutions to find out simple things such as the number of hours of tuition for a course/expected out of Uni study time. Not to mention the sheer uselessness of receiving replies in March when you have purposefully submitted your application in September.

/end rant
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ZakBrannigan
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#18
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#18
Thats a great idea J and i would be interested if i gained a university place this year doing one of those written case studies or even video case studies.I am sure a lot of other TSRs forum members who are also mature students would be interested as well.
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ZakBrannigan
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#19
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#19
(Original post by mullings1)
I thinks that's an excellent idea

maybe add,

1) reasons for returning back to education as a mature student?
thats a good question to put to mature students mullings1 :yep:

another relevant question to ask mature students might be:-
1) what qualifications are u currently studying for or have already obtained ?
2) also what made you chose that particular university or degree,if these questions havnt already been asked
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HardUpAcuGrad
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#20
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#20
(Original post by moonkatie)
For example, good quality childcare often has a waiting list, and you need to be booking 9+ months in advance. To do so you both need to know which University you will be attending (unless you have money to waste on reserving places at all your possible destinations), and how many hours you will require.
Don't know where you are, but in Manchester we have a Parent Information Service, which is a freephone number and provides details of all nurseries and childminders in the area.
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