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It has somewhat been a weird experience to say the least? Being a first year uni student during covid hasn't been absolutely wonderful as you inevitably miss out on the vita "university experience" because I dont know how it is to be a university student while being one. I also feel as though international students have been neglected, not by Queen's but at national level. We were told to come over amd pay fees as there'd be some face to face learning but nothing promised was delivered and us international students are stranded here with high living costs that could have been avoided had the government or university had taken the initiative to think about all parties and ensure everyone's welfare!
Sufficient spaces to house students and it is well kept
The university has been very vocal about mental health awareness and has launched countless initiatives to support students who might be facing issues.
My uni has tried their best to provide the best online learning experience which I appreciate was very difficult. Queens provided a good amount of mental health support with talks and advice pages.
I have actually really enjoyed my time at Queens despite being online for the majority of the time - I've still made plenty of friends and have really enjoyed my classes.
We also have a fantastic careers department with lots of support for options we have after our degrees.
When possible, we have our speaking classes in person which has been fantastic since many of my friends have been online all year! We have 10 teaching hours per week and I have a lot of contact with my teachers both during classes and via email. My teachers have all been great at replying quickly and extensively to me and have supported me so much throughout my first year.
We have access to the McClay library which has been an amazing place to study and to get resources from. There have been rooms made available for us to do our classes with others on our course so that we can get to know some fellow students
There is a huge variety of student support available to us - I have felt very comfortable contacting my teachers and personal tutor with any problems I have. We have a teams call every semester one-on-one with our personal tutor.
If I had the opportunity to receive a refund for the course and start it with another university, I would do so. This university is not providing value for money for this course, which is very negative when there is a big opportunity to recruit in this area. The School of Maths and Physics are not prepared to admit there are issues with the course, and from a personal perspective should not be leading this course within the University.
The School of Mathematics and Physics is very poor at working within the MSc Data Analytics students. There has been no communication for months on current industrial placements that are compulsory to the course.
Lecturers from School of Maths and Physics are shockingly poor. There have been multiple issues raised with the School in regards to failings and issues on the course. The first module examinations had multiple mistakes in the written paper, and the lecturer informed the students misleading information in regards to the practical examination as to what packages could be used. All of the class were given the opportunity to retake the examinations without penalty. For another module the entire class sat down to an exam that contained material that they were not taught. Classes in the 3 days prior to the exam of another module were cancelled as a result of industrial action. The school chose not to reschedule classes and did not provide alternative arrangements for students needing to ask questions prior to the exam as a result of the lecturer not answering emails while taking part in industrial action. Communication from the School is very poor.
Currently being renovated where the current facilities are scattered on campus.
The Postgraduate Computer Lab within the Computer Science Building is outstanding, unfortunately the staff from the School of Maths and Physics do not use the facilities to their full potential.
The university has good transportation links.
Multiple complaints have been raised against the course where there is little evidence to show that university showing any support or corrective action.
Honestly, if you're English (like me), don't go. In terms of the academic side of things, Queen's is ok at best, you'd be far better trying to get into literally any other Russel Group university if that's what you're aiming for. For me though the worst thing has been the social/cultural aspect. Belfast, in general, is a fun city with nice people etc., but the fact that the vast majority of the students are Northern Irish makes it hard. Many still live at home (so you won't meet them in uni accommodation, or for the rest of uni they will go home at the weekends) or simply stay in the friend groups they had at school as most of their friends also go to Queen's. The uni doesn't really put on any social events, yet another thing making it harder to meet fun people, or really do anything different from the weekly routine. I'm an outgoing, social person, so this has felt very lonely/boring for me. The culture at the uni is also very different, with people being generally a lot less open-minded, and less willing to explore new things in their uni years. I'm sure a lot of people will disagree with this view, but having spoken to others (particularly other English people), I'm also not alone in this view.
As far as I'm aware, each school handles its career development differently. My school has done this very well. Being on a professional studies course requires me to take a year out on placement. We were given lectures every week on different aspects of the application process and interview techniques etc. They also provided us with loads of contacts so it wasn't too hard to find reputable places to apply to. We could also very easily request one to one interviews if we needed them. Only thing I would say is that there isn't much financial help provided if your placement isn't paid (which many Zoology/Marine Biology ones aren't) limiting who can afford to go on these placements.
Some of the lecturers are truly amazing, passionate about what they are teaching, and very helpful to students. This can't be said for all of the lecturers, though I'm sure this is the same at every university. There also isn't much of a relationship between you and many of the lecturers, with many of them not knowing who you are at all, which can be quite off-putting. However, for me, my least favorite part of the course is that it is far too exam based. The modules I have enjoyed most have been 60% course work and 40% exam based, though most are 25% course work and 75% exam. That said, most of the content we are studying has been very interesting.
The students union is very poor. Never hosts any events, and never hear any changes they make despite their claims, haven't seen anything that has actually benefitted the students so far.
The security team is bordering on ridiculous. I understand wanting to keep the students safe but this is the only university accommodation I've been to where unless you sign in a guest before 10 pm they will not be allowed in. It makes you feel like a child. The conditions of Elms were actually pretty nice, with enough space for everyone's stuff and a cleaning service once a week. In terms of location, the other Queens accommodations are much better as though they are the same distance from the uni, BT1 and BT2 are actually close to town. In terms of social life, I would also recommend the other options over Elms Village as there are no social events that people actually go to so if you get stuck in a flat of people you aren't that great friends with you have no other options.
In terms of academia, for Biological Sciences, they are pretty good. Large labs with good microscopes etc. The PEC (Physical Education Center) provides good sporting facilities, at a discount for students. The McClay Library is particularly good, with loads of workspace and conference rooms, and plenty of computers.
The uni is in a great location, only a 5-minute walk from Botanic train station, 15/20 min walk from the city center, and the same distance to all the uni accommodations.
Very poor. Only a few societies actually ever host any events and sports are limited to very few people and is not a big part of uni life in Belfast (i.e. no one watches matches if you're not in the teams etc.). I don't know if this is the same for other unis, but neither of these things are good for meeting new people/having a social life. Obviously, this is only my experience. This is also with the exception of the uni ski society, which is a great way to meet loads of people and go on a great trip in the Christmas holidays.
Very poor. It often takes months to receive marks/feedback for work submitted, and even then there is very little actual feedback. I have not had to use any of the personal support services at the uni, though I've heard they're ok.
Horrible. Not what i expected. The tuition was too high for what the course actually offered. As i wrote in the previous answer there were a lot of elements not working. I remember there was a meeting/workshop about video game localisation and the speaker kept speaking in Chinese because the majority of students were from China. It was like a big 'forget you' to the rest of the students.
We have a website to search job positions which is helpful
1. The classes don't have any breaks between them. That means we had to run from one room to another because the professors would act passive aggressive if you were late. 2. The professors were taking it slow and made sure all the students had the right resources to finish the assignments; even if they didn't have experience in academic writing. But then for the final exams they had extremely high expectations and they wanted deep research. The students were treated like small children in school but then expected to write like professionals. 3. before applying i asked if i can have a tutor for my native language and i got a positive answer. but then the workshops began and there was no tutor. the workshop consisted of 4 students with no tutors talking about specific language elements that the others couldn't understand. students are paying high tuition for this course and it felt like even some basics were missing.
I don't know enough about the union but it seems to have potential regarding events
Depends. The library is really impressive and the rooms are modern despite the old building. The computer rooms were disappointing though. I was studying translation in a room called the language lab that didn't have the right keyboards. That means that all the foreign students couldn't use the lab. And we had translation workshops in there. Unacceptable.
Kind of, it has a tesco close and it's 20 minutes from the city centre
I don't know enough to comment on the societies
The professors were passive aggressive but to be honest if we needed to meet they were always there. the counselling as well
1st year was bad. Second year is class. The uni career service provides excellent support for those than want it and those then can benefit from it. I love the careers consults and student guidance team.
Careers service is the best service at queens
Don’t like the writing. Do like the practical
Well the building is demolished and the new one isn’t easily accessible so that’s bad. But the content is class
Absolute good tier
Bit on its own but there is stuff if you look for it
Personal tutors are good when they’re available
Hated first year. Loving second year. Getting involved in things outside of the course is good. Going out and actually socialising is key even if it isn’t what you usually do
Careers service does all they can it’s just the students are lazy.
Not many contact hours at all.
Facilities are shocking since the original SU has closed for refurbishment
Good I reckon.
It is not really near many amenities but everywhere in Belfast is in walking distance if you know where you’re going.
No idea I’m only part of the music society and that’s class so imma say they’re all good.
Eh it’s alright like
Poor. Might be the only person to go to uni and roundly Hagen it for the most part. Most students live at home and come from the same colleges so English students are not always welcomed and making friends has thus far proved impossible if not elusive. Lectures are ok but nothing exceptional. TA system is annoying as wexpected to be taught by experts not students. Support staff are very lovely though, they are the best part of university, and the grounds are lovely too.
It doesn’t really, careers appointments are available but largely unhelpful for those on a humanities degree.
Some lecturer said are enthusiastic and engaging Annoying that tutorials are run by doctoral students etc. Who all mark and teach completely differently.
Claim to represent all students but that is not true. Facilities ok but basic and student lounge is often unavailable so can’t use microwave. Boiling water rarely works.
Library is nice 👍 Lectures halls etc. Are expected, not exceptional nor awful
Very close to shops etc but about 30 minutes from university which is annoying for returning between lectures etc.
Poor. Very few diverse ones, mainly same old same old and very cliquey,
Incredibly poor. Wellbeing cut you off after 20 minutes although are very lovely when you do see them but are limited in the support they can offer due to budgets and limits. Tutors cannot be bothered, have never met mine as they have never got time.
1st year was absolutely awful and possibly the worst year of my life. But 2nd year I’ve grown and got more friends and socialise and I’m just living more and loving living in Belfast. The course still feels part time but I can’t change that so I’m just trying to do my best and earn some money whilst I’m at it.
There are so many careers opportunities at queens if you look for them. The careers consultations are especially fantastic and really help you hone in on your skills and what you might be good at.
I’d love more contact hours as it feels like we aren’t really doing a full time course and there isn’t even enough content to back that up. I love the practical elements and the freedom we get with our own expression.
The place is getting redone and was supposed to open next year but the old building is still standing so it looks like it’ll take much longer. There are fewer society spots in the new SU and less space in general, but the student representation seems good.
There could be a massive improvement on the amount of spaces for rehearsal, it is very awkward to have to rehearse in the cinema lobby. But the quality of the facilities they have are outstanding
Not really, there are small shops around the uni but nothing to live off of. It is also a good 15/20 minute walk from the uni accommodation and there is nothing on campus which is annoying for those of us that love an extra 10 minutes in bed.
There are loads it would just be nice if timetables worked with the societal schedule and didn’t put class on society day.
We have personal tutors but they’re a bit naff unless you are in a crap situation. The academic feedback is often limited and confusing.