A Guide for Undergraduate Mature Students Welcome So you are by guy21


									A Guide for Undergraduate Mature Students
So you are thinking about studying and
making the step into higher education? It’s a
tough decision, at any age. Before going to
university most students will have questions
“Have I chosen the right course?”
“Will I make friends?”

However, as a mature student you may have
additional concerns and questions of your own,
for example:
“How will I cope financially?”
“Is age a barrier?”
“Am I academically able?”
“Will it help me to get a better job?”

This leaflet intends to answer some of the
questions that you, as a mature student, may
have about entering the world of higher
education at the University of York.

What is a mature student?                                                                             Returning to learning
The University of York welcomes applications       Access and Foundation courses,                     There are many reasons for deciding to return
from mature candidates. A mature student is        Apprenticeships, or direct from work and           to study:
typically someone who is entering university for   voluntary activity.                                • to develop individual skills
the first time following a break from education.
                                                                                                      • changes in employment field
                                                   Additional Introductory Years are also available   • retirement/children left home
In recent years about 13% of new students at       in some subject areas at the University of York,   • enjoyment/interest in subject/dream
the University of York have been over the age      as an alternative entry route. This initial year   • unemployment or career break
of 21 and in some departments the proportion       may be studied at York College and
is much higher. Overall our student population     prepares you for entry to your chosen degree.      University is for anyone with the academic
ranges in age from 17 to 79!                                                                          ability and motivation. It’s never too late to
                                                   For more information contact Admissions and        fulfil your potential. Higher education opens
Mature students come to us from a wide range       Schools Liaison – see the back page of this        up a range of opportunities to gain experience,
of backgrounds with qualifications ranging         leaflet for details.                               knowledge and the confidence to achieve
from A levels and BTEC National Diplomas to                                                           your goals.
Choosing a course                                   The programme is geared towards adult part-        It may be a relief to know that living on a
There are numerous courses to choose from at        time learners who may not have studied for         budget is easier at York than many other
the University of York. Roughly 30 departments      some time. You study at the same level as new      universities. Accommodation and transport
and centres offer a range of subjects in            undergraduate students in a supportive             costs are relatively low, and most places,
the Arts, Social Sciences and Science and           university environment and have access to          including the centre of York, are in walking or
Technology. The University also offers a degree     a range of student services. Subjects include      cycling distance. Students also benefit from
in Medicine through the Hull York Medical           Humanities, Local History, Citizenship and         second-hand bookshops and discounts in many
School. York is highly regarded for the quality     Creative Writing. For further information visit:   restaurants, bars and shops across the city. The
of its programmes and has an exceptional            www.york.ac.uk/lifelonglearning or telephone       University Careers Service also provides help
teaching record in external assessments of          01904 434620.                                      with looking for and finding part-time work.
teaching quality. The wide range of courses
available should mean that you study what’s         Financing your studies                             Additional financial advice can be found in the
right for you and a subject that you enjoy.         When you become a student one of your              Undergraduate Prospectus or at:
                                                    biggest concerns may be how you will manage        www.studentsupportdirect.co.uk
The University of York’s Undergraduate              financially. Your lifestyle may change if
Prospectus will give you a full list of the         adapting to a large cut in income from
courses available – see the back page of this       previous employment. Most full-time students’
leaflet to request a copy.                          tuition fees and living costs are covered by
                                                    government loans, which are repayable once
                                                    you have graduated and earning above a
                                                                                                                   In Profile...
How long will it take?
Most degree courses take a minimum of three         certain level.
years; however it may take longer if you take,
                                                    In addition to these loans, there are also many
                                                                                                         Neil, Medicine
for example, a foundation year, introductory
year, a study year abroad or a sandwich course      sources of assistance that may be available to
                                                                                                               I moved to York from London
with a year in industry.                            you:
                                                    • Household income based grants
                                                                                                           “ with my 12 year old son, to
What if a degree is not for me yet?                 • Childcare Grant                                    start medical school. York seems
You may not be at the stage where you are           • Parents’ Learning Allowance                        a great place to raise kids with a
ready to start a degree programme but would         • Adult Dependants’ Grant                            mixture of both old and new – the
like the challenge of studying on a more            • Disabled Students Allowance (DSA)                  amazing history is very well
flexible part-time basis. The Centre for Lifelong   • Subject-specific grants and bursaries
                                                                                                         complemented by some state-of-
Learning runs a number of evening and day           • University bursaries
                                                                                                         the-art attractions. There are some
courses in various subjects. Short one hour
                                                    For further information contact your Local           really good primary and secondary
interest sessions may also be available.
                                                    Authority (LA) or the University’s Student           schools around and the beaches are
You could also choose to work towards an            Support Office on telephone: 01904 433730            not that far either!
accredited Certificate of Lifelong Learning.        or visit www.york.ac.uk/studentmoney
Entry requirements                                 Essentially, the Admissions Tutor wants to             Accommodation
The specific entry requirements for each           know as much as possible about you and your            Over half of the University’s undergraduates
department or course are listed in the             interest in the subject, including what relevant       live in University accommodation and all new
Undergraduate Prospectus. However, mature          activities you have been involved with since           single undergraduates are guaranteed a place
students are not required to have the same         leaving education. A handout entitled The              in University residence for their first year, if
academic qualifications as school-leaving          Persuasive Personal Statement is also available        requested. A limited amount of family
applicants.                                        from Admissions and Schools Liaison – see the          accommodation is available. Some
                                                   back page of this leaflet to request a copy.           students may be able to live in University
Departments are looking for:                                                                              accommodation for two years, although rented
• enthusiasm and motivation                        Why the University of York                             accommodation close to campus is easy to find
• evidence of your ability to study at the         The University of York was founded during              and reasonably priced. For more information
  required level                                   the period of university expansion in the early        contact the Accommodation Office on
• evidence of relevant experience or interest in   1960’s. A relatively small university, there are       telephone 01904 432165 or visit:
  relation to the subject                          currently over 11,000 students, 8,100 of whom          www.york.ac.uk/admin/accom
                                                   are undergraduates.
Departments have a great deal of experience
in advising mature students and you may find       The main campus at Heslington, within
it helpful to contact the Admissions Tutor of      walking distance of the city centre, is situated
the department you are interested in for advice    around a large lake in 200 acres of landscaped
before you apply. Contact details are provided     parkland. There are fast and frequent bus
in the Undergraduate Prospectus - see the back     services to and from the city and an effective
page of this leaflet to request a copy.            network of cycle paths. A smaller campus,
                                                   King’s Manor, is located in the city centre
Application                                        where the Department of Archaeology is based.
Applications for all undergraduate programmes
are made through the Universities and              The University of York combines the
Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) -               advantages of a university that is large
www.ucas.com.                                      enough to provide a vibrant social and cultural
                                                   environment, with the welcoming and friendly
Your application should provide evidence of        atmosphere found in a smaller community.
the entry requirements criteria detailed above.    York has earned an international reputation
You may show your ability to study at the          for teaching quality and research to become
required level through previously achieved         one of the UK’s most popular and successful
qualifications or recent study as a mature         universities.
student at a preparatory level suitable to
higher education. Relevant training and work       York itself is a beautiful historic city visited and
or voluntary experience may also be taken into     admired by people from all over the world.
                                         Student Support                                   available to help all students with any
       In Profile...                      The University of York takes care to provide
                                         many strands of support to meet the needs
                                                                                           problems they may have; emotional, personal
                                                                                           and academic. www.york.ac.uk/admin/scs
                                         of all students. Mature students may have
                                         additional concerns regarding finance, time-      Childcare facilities
Sandie, Educational Studies              management, integration and returning to          The University and the Students’ Union jointly
                                         academic learning, which is perfectly             run York Campus Nursery which caters for
     I came to the University of York    understandable, and there are many services       children aged three months to five years.
 “ with no preconceived ideas but        and members of staff available to support you     There is a reduced fee for student parents.
I knew, wanted and expected, that I      through your studies.                             The Nursery is situated in the grounds of the
would have to work hard. My degree                                                         University and operates for 50 weeks of the
                                         Student Support Office                            year, between 8.30am to 6.00pm, 5 days a
experience has been brilliant! I
                                         The Student Support Office is there to provide    week.
enjoyed the introductory sessions,       information, support and advice on money and
the variety of teaching styles and       debt issues, funding, housing, employment,        The Nursery is fully registered with the Office
the progressive links that the           benefits and many other areas including:          for Standards of Education and complies with
sessions followed to build up our        healthcare, childcare, legal and consumer         the national standards for Full Day Care. It is
learning. In addition, the core skills   queries. www.york.ac.uk/admin/sso                 run by professionally qualified staff, assisted by
that I have learnt, developed and                                                          volunteers and trainees; all working to provide
                                         Collegiate support system                         a safe and caring environment. For further
renewed, have also underpinned
                                         The University of York has a collegiate system,   details telephone 01904 433737.
my degree and I feel very prepared       which means that each student is a member         www.york.ac.uk/univ/nrsry
(despite also feeling daunted!)          of one of the eight colleges. Each college
for the PGCE course that I am now        provides accessible help and support to           Computing Service
undertaking.                             students through college tutors and welfare       The Computing Service promotes the use of
                                         representatives.                                  computing campus wide. Each student at York
The Educational Studies                                                                    is provided with a computer account and has
                                         Supervisors                                       free access to email and the Internet.
Department has been wonderful.
                                         At the University of York a member of your        IT training is available through the University’s
I have felt welcome, supported and       main teaching department acts as a supervisor     Illiad Programme.
involved and I have developed, both      throughout your course. They can advise on
academically and as a person;            both academic and personal problems. They         Additional services and support
I certainly would not be training        will usually be involved in your course and so    Students can also get support and use of the
to be a teacher now if it was not        will be familiar with your academic work and      Students’ Union, National Union of Students,
for my positive experience at the        your personal interests and progress.             Library, study skills workshops, social
                                                                                           activities, pastoral advice, out-of-class tutor
University of York.
                                         Student Counselling Service                       support, nightline, spiritual support, and a
                                 ”       The University’s Student Counsellors are          campus health centre.
Careers support                                   Mature student life
The Careers Service is experienced in providing
students with support throughout your time
                                                  Students at the University of York are of all
                                                  ages and background so everyone should feel
                                                                                                             In Profile...
here and also after you leave. Information        included. There are lots of activities for you to
and guidance is available about jobs,             get involved with on campus, catering for a
employers, qualifications, postgraduate study     wide range of tastes and interests, and there       James, Biology
and research, vocational courses and selection    are plenty of people on hand to help you
processes. The centre hosts presentations by      settle in.                                              After performing pretty badly
local employers, careers workshops and events.                                                         “ at school, I always doubted
                                                  Mature students are also invited to a tailored      whether I would be able to make a
The Careers Service can help mature students      introduction and welcome to the University at       success of a degree, especially as a
in specific areas of interest and provide         the start of the first term. Here you can gain
                                                                                                      mature student in an entirely new
personal advice and guidance tailored to your     information to help you make the most of your
                                                  time as a student.                                  professional direction. The
needs. www.york.ac.uk/services/careers
                                                                                                      combination of excellent staff here
                                                  For more information on student activities at       at York, and my own self-
                                                  York visit www.yusu.org                             determination, enabled me to
                                                                                                      achieve something I had never
                                                                                                      dare dream of - a first class degree.
                                                                                                      Despite plenty of life’s usual
                                                                                                      distractions; children, house sales,
                                                                                                      health and money problems, many
                                                                                                      of which are used as excuses for
                                                                                                      people not following their dreams, I
                                                                                                      am now on my way to becoming a
                                                                                                      scientific researcher in a discipline
                                                                                                      I am passionate about. I would
                                                                                                      encourage you to take the plunge
                                                                                                      and do what you really want to do.
                                                                                                      My time at University has been a
                                                                                                      great all round experience, and the
                                                                                                      help and guidance I’ve received from
                                                                                                      my department has provided the
                                                                                                      best possible support for my
                                                                                                      change in career.
Career prospects                                    Visit us                                            Contacts
The University of York regularly appears            You are welcome to visit the University’s           For further information on anything
high up in the league tables and has an             campus at any time. Please contact Admissions       mentioned in this leaflet contact:
exceptional reputation with local, national         and Schools Liaison for further details on          Admissions and Schools Liaison
and international employers. As a result, the       making an independent visit.                        01904 433196
University has an impressive graduate                                                                   admissions-liaison@york.ac.uk
employment record.                                  University Open Days are usually held twice a
                                                    year; check the website or contact us to find       To request an undergraduate prospectus:
Many students choose their courses with career      out when they are.                                  www.york.ac.uk/admissions/ugrad/
improvement in mind and for some careers                                                                prospectus
it is essential to have a specific degree, like     The University is situated on the south-eastern     01904 433539
Medicine or Engineering. However, you may           outskirts of the city of York and is easily
choose to study a more general course not           accessible from the city by bus, taxi, bicycle or   www.york.ac.uk
directly linked to a particular career. This type   on foot.
of course will still provide you with a
qualification and skills that you can use to        York itself is easy to reach by:
progress into many areas of employment.
                                                    Rail: On the East Coast Main Line. Trains from
An outline of the diverse range of employment             London take under two hours; two and
entered by York students, immediately after               a half from Edinburgh. Direct trains also
graduation, is provided by department in the              link Birmingham, Leeds, Liverpool and
Undergraduate Prospectus and on the Careers               Manchester.
Service website.
www.york.ac.uk/services/careers                     Road: Approximately 30 minutes from Leeds,
                                                          and an hour and a half from Manchester
Next step                                                 and Newcastle. York is easily accessed
Hopefully this leaflet has gone some way to               from the A1, M1 and M62.
answer your questions and encourage you to
follow your wish to enter higher education.         Air:   Close to Leeds Bradford, Manchester,
Researching extensively about the courses and              Teesside and Newcastle airports for
support systems will ensure that you make the              international destinations.
right choice for you and feel confident when
taking the next step to apply.                      Useful maps can be found at:
If you have any further queries, or wish for
additional advice, please contact Admissions
and Schools Liaison - see right for details.

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