The annual Whatuni Student Choice Awards (WUSCAs) highlight the incredible work carried out by institutions for their students. Due to Covid restrictions, this year’s awards were not collected on uni campuses as usual, but instead based on submissions from institutions, which were then judged by our special student panel.
2021 WUSCA winners
Corona ruined most of it, but I can't blame the uni. Nice uni, good lectures (at least for my course). The VC cancelled graduation which left a lot of people very sad. Not quite sure why as most other unis still have one, think VC wanted to save money for a new holiday home in the Pyrenees.
They offer lots of help, but I am doing a masters so never bothered.
The lecturers themselves were amazing despite everything being online. If things were in-person, it would have been 5 stars. My one criticism is that sometimes there were lectures after the submission date for the final piece of work for the course, which makes no sense at all as that information was useful for exams/coursework. May be timtabelling issue I don't know.
Great amount, no complaints here
Never used personally, but seemed to be a lot of variatey.
Since I was not able to be on campus for my second year, I'd have to give a low rating. I felt a bit less motivated since everything was online. But the University always updated students with the recent changes based on government announcements.
Career Central in UEA has been very helpful in presenting me with possible job and volunteer opportunities.
Transitioning to online lectures & seminars have been difficult for everyone, but I see how my seminars leaders are trying their best to make classes still engaging & insightful. They are open to questions & clarifications, and one-on-one tutorials have really helped.
UEA spaces are very open and clean. Library spaces are conducive to learning, and outdoor spaces are great ways to meet new people and socialize.
The University makes it clear that there are well-being checkups and mental health services available to all students. But I wish there was more support for international students, especially during the COVID-19 crisis.
At first when I got here I was concerned about not being able to make any friends and being so far away from family, but going I've been able to meet awesome people and stopped feeling alone and on campus witnessing the beautiful view of the lake as your stroll around the grounds or the adorable bunnies you might catch on your odd walk back to your accomodation has helped in keeping me relaxed and quilm any stresses. The lecturers are amazing, always provide best quality teaching and regularly emphasise their availability if you have any questions about stuff regarding lectures is really has been really useful when stressed about not knowing what to do. Overall 10/10
Most of my lectures have been online and there was only 1 in person lecture on Tuesday but this became online after December. Good teaching hours, thankfully most in the morning so I can stuff out of the way and study in the afternoon. Tutors are always readily available via email and discussion boards online if I ever have any questions which became really useful when it came to summative deadlines as you knew your point of contacts as well as just knowing where to go if you have anything about the course you want to know.
Wellbeing and mental support is always advertised on blackboard at the start and end of lectures, it always tells you where to go if you need help with issues regarding wellbeing or mental health as well as personal tutors who are accessible by email that are very happy to help regarding in issues you might have. My personal tutors has been like the first point of contact for me when I needed help with mental health issues and they directed on me about useful things in campus
I have managed to make great friends in my accommodation and a few on my course from the in person labs I have been able to attend. The recorded lectures makes it easy to revisit work which is extremely helpful for exams. However, a bit more support for student learning online would be helpful
We had in person lectures at the start of the year and they even managed to get our field week to be in person at the end of the Easter holidays
I really like this Uni, but online teaching is definitely not worth the price. I feel quite ripped off paying so much money for what feels like the Open university. Before the pandemic however, I really enjoyed being on campus - it has a nice calm atmosphere and is a beautiful place to study.
I haven't yet seriously started thinking about my career, but we have had several career fairs and it has been made clear there are many opportunities available if we are proactive. There are also roles available on campus, such as student ambassadors, so you can gain professional experience and money during your time at university.
The lecturers are pretty good and I'm enjoying my course a lot, but I struggled a bit with online learning because its difficult to stay motivated. The course does not feel worth £9,250 when its online!
Great campus, a few miles away from the city so quiet and very green (with a lake and woodland attached!). Very nice library and lecture theatres, several food & coffee shops, and a nice sports centre with a swimming pool.
There are many services available for assistance, although I haven't personally used any of them.
Great university, both academically and socially. The societies are fun although I would personally like more variety in the coming years. It was hard at times during Covid restrictions but the campus has made a good comeback since lockdown, with a new beer garden opening beside the LCR. Exclusively online lectures felt like a bit of a scam at times, as i was promised blended learning initially, however the quality of teaching and the number of resources available to me remains at an adequate level.
Career central helps will everything you need. Training and practice or interviews, job opportunities, work experience. It's all provided if you look for it. My course especially provides many extra resources for employability and offers many guest speakers and aid.
Almost entirely online but extremely flexible and informative. All lectures are recorded and many online resources are provided. Module leaders answer emails swiftly, often within the same day and are normally very helpful. At times lecturers can be unhelpful when providing answers to student's questions regarding summatives, otherwise their aid is useful of most occasions.
Facilities are clean and efficient. All very useful and open to students at all the necessary times.
The services are offered in many places, though I've heard from many people that it's either inefficient or unhelpful at times.
This year has been very different to previous years. In no way is my 3 star rating a sign of disappointment at the university, it is just representative of the reality for students this year. For all the university’s efforts, having next to no contact time has greatly reduced the enjoyment and success of my studies this year. Had we had more contact hours, this would likely not be the case, however COVID has made this impossible. Students at UEA have had to take the brunt off Covids impact. Although; the safety net does provide some comfort.
I have thoroughly enjoyed my second year and UEA. Recently I have been able to see the lectures and other student in person which has been really nice. The teaching and support has not wavered I feel I have done better now than ever at university.
The UEA careers service have been very good with the changes the pandemic have brought and were able to effectively move online. Furthermore as a careers service student ambassador I have apart of meetings to improve the careers services showing that they are adapting further. For access to Internships and job opportunities I get a weekly email about these through the careers service. I also get more tailored job opportunities sent to me through the economics department which led me to my current internship. Furthermore, the UEA offer internships within departments as well which was how I was able to get an internship last year as well.
In 1st semester the lectures for two of my modules extended teaching hours to ensure all work was covered and to provide extra support from the lectures and for the final project. Whenever I have asked a lecturer about anything either academic, personal or careers related I have been met with a kind and helpful response that has enabled me to do better in my studies, submit an extenuating circumstances request and get a paid summer internship. Some modules offered pre recorded lecture videos and a lecture while others offered just live lectures. All workshops and seminars were online and did work very well. By having all live sessions recorded this meant I could go back to them at a later date to revise and if I could to the full session I could watch it back later. All the lectures offered office hours every week and were more than willing to help with questions and extend my knowledge beyond the scope of the module. If I had questions outside of the office hours the lecturer would be at the other end of any email with a swift reply.
The campus has a number of cafes and places to sit down both inside and outside. The library is particularly extensive and has been made Covid secure with an efficient system that initially stated with a click and collect service, moving to drop off point to return books, when the library was reopened in full in summer 2020 there was an effective one way system in place. The facilities at the UEA are very good, there are plenty of toilets available for use however the cleaning schedule of the toilets in the main students union should be revised to be more frequent throughout the day as they are used a lot.
I haven’t used any of these services as I have not needed to but the schools of economics have made me aware of u I dirty wide support services. Further to this the school of economics have a strong stand well advertised student support system.
All together there is nowhere I'd rather be than UEA. My course is engaging, the lecturers are fantastic, and I feel like every module is useful. The transition to online learning hasnt been perfect but the uni did what they could to keep students up to date and aware of what was happening. The industry connections and guest lectures make me really hopeful for my job prospects after graduating. More than anything though, its the people that make UEA so good. Individuals from all over the world come here and make this place their home and making friends with them and learning from them has been the best 2 years of my life so far.
My personal experience has been fairly poor. I was at uni between end of September and shortly before the locks down in November. For which I moved back home. I’d had to isolate after a teammate at hockey tested positive. This was shortly after I started at uni. It meant I missed the opportunity to get to know my flatmates as I was instructed not to leave my room and mix with them. I missed out on the chance to bond with my flatmates and it was miserable. When I went home for a reading week, I stayed at home choosing to commute for the two days I had to come back. I returned to campus at the end of April - nearly 7 months later. One week back for a introduction to placement and started my 15 weeks on placement at the hospital. Now, flatmates have changed and I love it. Not counting down to when it ends in 2 years now. It started as a one and is now a 5 so figured I’d take the average. Take this with a pinch of salt though - this doesn’t reflect on UEA, but on the impact covid had on my experience. Also, in terms of this last question about value of money. It’s a big no. Considering, that the money I have paid for tuition hasn’t been used to the fullness it usually would. Such as hiring the lecture halls. As far as I’m concerned. It’s gone to the lecturers pay checks - which is fine. They need a salary. As well as the library and simulation labs. Other than that i haven’t used anything else in terms of facilities. It shouldn’t be much more than how much Open University costs.
Currently, they’ve not given us many employment advice or opportunities but it hasn’t been the same. I’ve received more emails from RCN, about online career talks then I have from the uni.
My course has been mostly online. I had two seminars in person but had to isolate for the initial one and I’ve attended all of my lab sessions which went over two and a half days. The lectures in person were difficult - almost more so than online. Because social distancing was in place, group work was difficult to complete to a good standard. The online sessions were choppy for a start as both lecturers and students learnt to navigate Blackboard - the platform UEA use. Couple this with the problems that Blackboard had to actually facilitate the amount of students working on it everyday and it wasn’t simple at all. We were assigned personal advisors which has been a god send. Some haven’t been as lucky with who they got assigned to. However, my PA set up weekly catch-ups that she strongly encouraged we attended. Others haven’t had more than a couple since the start of the course. Since a lot of questions have to be asked over email - it can sometimes take a while for a relevant answer to be given which can be tedious. Overall, when it came to my placement I didn’t feel ready - this was mostly because although I’ve completed all the theory. Because I hadn’t left my room for a majority of it, I felt as thought I wasn’t prepared.
I haven’t seen all the faculties that would typically be available. However what I have used, I am impressed by. The library, is a brilliant resource, of which nearly all resources can be read online through the library’s search engine. The lecture halls are good, spacious teaching areas with the only issue being when the lecturer walks away from the microphone. The simulation labs are incredible. All resources are exactly as you would find them in a hospital which is perfect for the learning environment.
Everything has been offered during covid. Emails are regularly sent out and information as to who to contact for any problems is relatively simple to find. However, there are sometimes - either miscommunication issues or problems with not knowing who will have answers and you can find that replies are sending you around the houses. Such as student services suggesting speaking to your PA/Lecturer but then being sent back to student services. I haven’t needed to access disability or mental health support or the wellbeing groups however again these are included in the regular emails as options and when they can be accessed.