We are sliding into autumn and registering for another year of study. I am also in week two of a new position and we are moving to a new home. It has been a wonderfully interesting year as being a first year post graduate law student is bound to be. The professional and personal pandemonium certainly added a bit of zest to the excitement of legal studies. The process of shifting house and starting a new position at the same time is a bit hair-raising so you can appreciate why I decided to wait on exams. As the Hermione Granger of law school – the one who looks forward to taking exams – I had to overcome my disappointment at missing them.
More than three years have rolled by in a flash from I enrolled with the University of London International Programmes, as a student of BSc Accounting and Finance, under the academic direction of the LSE. Since then I have experienced the troughs and crescents of life – from changing my stream of study from Accounting to International Relations, witnessing the tragic death of one of my aunts, taking immensely challenging and rigorous exams, attending demanding lectures at the LSE and the SOAS summer schools, performing Indian classical music at SOAS, to even trying a hand at punting in the River Cam (which by the way was almost a flop)! With the results of my third year of study being declared (and which I am quite happy about), it feels a bit surreal to think I am onto my fourth and final year of study with the University of London and LSE. Back in India after spending one of my most productive and busiest times in London, I must confess that getting to tour the Senate House – the nerve centre of the International Programmes has been highly inspiring.
Having been affiliated with an institution where we had lecturers to teach us the entire course and guide us until the day of the examination, studying an entire course on my own was a whole new experience. It was a risk, because I was used to being pampered by lecturers not only delivering the syllabus but dealing with every single problem I had. However, I had a few options to select my fourth course from, and after skimming through their respective subject guides, Economic Geography seemed like the best and the most interesting option to me. Unfortunately, Economic Geography was a course that was not being taught at my institution, so I decided to take the risk and go ahead with it alone. I was scared, I have to admit. I had no idea how I would make myself study for it without any classes, and how the result would turn out to be.
One thing true about independent study that is also true for many goals is the natural inclination to ask ourselves if we can really do something. To set a goal, we have to evaluate our ability, our motivation, and our attitude. For me, one important thing about studying in the University of London International Programmes is how responsibility for outcomes is my own. I guess that can be true of other study models, but for me it is magnified in this one. It is one reason why I enjoy the program so much.
So that’s it. All done. A BSc in Politics and International Relations. When I saw my exam results this week my reactions were relief (because I felt a bit glass-half-empty after the exams in May), joy (at getting three results over 70%) and pride at the overall First Class Honours degree I was awarded.
I won’t use the cliche “journey” but lots of aspects of my life have changed since I started the degree. Unlike full-time students that get sucked into the bell-jar of academia and pupate into “real world” graduates four years later, those of us studying through the University of London International Programmes have to blend studies with our daily realities. My academic studies – like many other distance learning students – was squeezed around the changing fortunes of one-and-a-half jobs, family commitments and curveballs like house moves.
So my results for my third year are out. As usual, they aren’t to my expectations. Actually, they were never to my expectations. This only goes to show that University of London is very unpredictable. Either that, or my expectations for my own results just generally suck. Haha. Anyhow, good thing is I passed every single subject.
This means that I graduated from University of London International Programmes with a Second Class Uppers.
The fact that I graduated means a lot of me. It means that I have finished a hard race. Reached the finish line. It means that I survived and thrived in this course. Yes, I did it. I actually did it. We did it. We graduated! Our hard work paid off. A job well done!
This post is written by Hannah, Deputy Chair of the Student Voice Group
Having just completed my LLB with the University of London International Programmes, I am grateful to be climbing out from the depths of exam stress and seemingly endless hours of study. As fellow students, I’m sure all readers are well aware that the rigorous programmes of the University of London can be arduous and that the intense study they require can at exam times can be quite isolating.
However, my experience and journey through the LLB has been brightened and coloured by engagement with other students as well as academics and staff from across the International Programmes through serving as a student member of a committee. These support networks have been key for me and have helped me during difficult times to remember the positive aspects of study which, outside of exam season, is surprisingly a very rewarding and enjoyable pursuit! Continue reading
Cape Cod is such a lovely place. It has been some time since we visited the area and I forgot how beautiful the seashore is here. Several years ago I lived in northern New England and once again, I forgot how much we enjoyed it. I could very easily live here some day. But, on this trip it feels wonderful to visit our old, favorite places and connect with friends. It is also quite nice to pack a picnic basket, pitch an umbrella on the sand, and enjoy a good beach read while sunning myself lobster red. What does all this have to do with studying Postgraduate Laws? Let me share…
It is that time of the year when we are all busy in our own ways; vacationing in Thailand, going on a shopping spree in Dubai, building the CV by interning at a local or international firm, finishing off those series you did not get to watch all year (although it cannot be the famous ‘Game of Thrones’ because who does not get time to watch that one even if there is an exam the next day, right?), or just lazing around at home. That being said, if you have graduated or are going to graduate next year and are planning on pursuing a Master’s degree, now is the time to get to work.
Hello readers and colleagues!
I know… it’s been a while since our last conversation but I’m back with some potentially interesting thoughts for you.
How to plan your studies? How to make sure we begin the new academic year in the best possible way? It sounds like a subjective matter but there are some general considerations that apply to almost all of us.
We should take advantage of this relatively quiet period – academically speaking – to carefully devise a basic plan. In my brief experience, I learnt the earlier we start planning (i.e. structuring our studies), the better our results and the more enjoyable the journey.