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I studied at Stirling from 1992-1996. The atmosphere on campus is very relaxed and it feels at times more like a holiday retreat than a place of work. I would recommend Stirling to anyone and the only drawback is that you eventually have to leave and join the world of work. Would give anything to do my time there again.
With A-Level results just being released, thousands of students now face the reality of going to uni in September or October and this is a guide for anyone attending the University of Stirling.
One of the defining features of the University of Stirling is that it is an actual campus... everywhere you need to be is in one place. This is the feature that made me put Stirling as my first choice. There is nothing scarier than you're first day at university, and in my opinion the last thing you want to do is get lost... a feat which is nearly impossible to achieve at the university.
Let's start with student accomodation. I attended the university in 2005, and although nothing appeared to change within the halls during this time, there is nothing to say that some things haven't changed.
University accomodation is primarily for first and fourth year students.
First year students are allocated to single rooms within the halls. These halls are Murray Hall, Geddes Court, A K Davidson Hall, Andrew Stewart Hall and Alexander Court. I personally stayed at Geddes court, naturally on the top floor! The accomodation at Murray and Geddes isn't great and when I was there, it was painted yellow breezeblocks... The rooms come with a desk, sink, wardrobe and overhead cupboards (and of course a bed). There is also a lock on the bedroom door.
At busy times (so no doubt this year), 2 students may have to share in a twin room (two single beds), but the rooms are considerably larger, so there is always a silver lining. There are approximately 17 students to each section of a floor, with there being about 6 sections on each floor (from memory!). There are 2 showers, 2 baths, and 3 toilets, and a small kitchen. Even though the accomodation isn't great, I found that it makes each section bond and I am still friends with most of the people I lived with in first year (5 years later!).
If you are one of the lucky few to be allocated to Andrew Stewart Hall (ASH), you will have you're very own ensuite with a shower!
Each accomodation has 24 hour porter service and you will need your hall cards to get in at night time. Each room has internet access, although what you can do on the internet is retricted...
Each student is required to provide their own food, cutlery and crockery. However, I found that all 17 of us turned up with dinner sets of 6... you do the math! I therefore suggest only taking a couple of plates, and most people end up sharing their stuff anyway! Assuming the fridges haven't changed since I was there, try not to buy that much refridgerated food, as you get a tiny locker each to put your food in. There is also no freezer. In the end my floor ended up buying a freezer which made a world of difference! This is all assuming nothing has changed!
Also all rooms are on a 38 week let which means that you can stay in halls over the Christmas holiday if you want. For 2nd and 3rd years, students tend to privately rent flats with other students (mainly your friends).
Now the semesters! Unlike most universities, Stirling only has 2 semesters, which means very long holidays. However, you don't get an easter break (just a long weekend), so try and arrange to see your friends from home at Christmas and during the summer. Stirling also starts in September whereas most other universities start in October. The dates don't always sync perfectly with other universities, but you do get a 2 month Christmas break!
The university facilities. This is another great feature of the university. The halls are a maximum 10 minute walk away from the main building. You walk across the bridge that is built over the uni's very own loch (!) and you are then at the main building. There are some shops in the 'atrium' including a travel agent, book shop, student union shop (sells cards, stationary, university memorabilia), Royal Bank of Scotland, what was a post office, pharmacy, and convenience store. There is also a bar 'Studio' which serves food during the day, and is a good place for nightime entertainment. Downstairs there is more food available.
The Library has just undergone a massive renovation, and although it was finished after I left uni, I hear it is VERY good.
The university itself... I studied Psychology which fortunately was quite near the atrium. It does take a while to get used to the layout of the uni, and invariably ended getting lost within the building. There are several lecture halls where all subjects lecture in. There are also various computer labs, study rooms, experimental labs, a creche, and each subject has their own section of the building. Subjects such as Politics are located in Pathfoot which is near the entrance to the university (where you drive in).
The courses are very good, with each department very organised. Lecturer's do their best to get to know the students in their department and you will often work with various members of staff.
If you're expecting hundreds of heaving night clubs in Stirling town centre itself, you will be disappointed. Just outside the university campus is the 'Red Room' and the 'Med'. The Med is a bar which is very busy. After socialising at the Med people head over to the Red Room (connected to the Med) which is a small nightclub.
In the city centre are 2 nightclubs - Dusk and Fubar. Each have their own student nights and the bus stop at uni takes you right into town and drops you off right in front of Fubar.
Stirling is more a place for pubs and bars than nightclubs,but you always arrange a night out in Glasgow for special occassions.
The campus is set in a stunning location, surrounded by mountains, and with Stirling Castle and the Wallace Monument as part of your view, it is a stunning place to live in! Although work wise I was glad when uni ended, I am SO glad that I chose the University of Stirling to do my undergraduate degree!
Im currently a Post graduate student studying housing at this University , although it is called Stirling University , it is outside the town centre but is serviced regularly by local busses and city link coaches to other towns and cities
The university is situated in its own grounds with a lake complete with swans and the back drop of some stunning hills and close to the Wallace Monument
There are halls of residence available , for post graduate and undergraduate students I cannot comment on these however as I travel to Uni each day
parking is at a premium on site and each car is required to have a parking payment which is payable in advance or by day to day voucher available from the campus security point , however spaces are on a first come first served basis and you may spend some time trying to find a space during peak times
there is a students union on the campus which provides a wide range of entertainment , and of course cheep drinks and food , with regular club nights , there is also a wide range of societies and organizations to join which add to the student experience
catering on campus is provided by sodexo who offer a restaurant , fast food outlet and a coffee shop , the coffee shop in my opinion is very over priced
Bank of scotland also operate a full banking service with cash points in the 'atrium' building , this where the catering , and student union are also situated
There is also a reasonably priced mini market which is ideal for those who stay on campus and those who want some thing quick to eat such as sandwiches etc
the book shop is also situated in the atrium along with a pharmacy and travel agents , along with student union shop to purchase folders and polo shirts etc
the temporary library is also situated in the atrium building at at present really lets the uni down , a new library is currently being built and expected to open in August this year (2010) so whilst this work is being undertaken it means a limited service is available from the library , which means that the book you are looking for may not be instantly available requiring staff to search it out , in my opinion this has been badly thought out for a university of this size
there are a wide range of courses being offered by Stirling Uni at both undergraduate and post graduate course many courses ( such as mine) as presented electronically using a web based service called webct which allows access to lecture material 24/7
sports facilities are also available and are used by staff and students alike along with the near by centre of sports excellence there are football and rugby pitches and a swimming pool
the macrobert centre is also in campus , it has a restaurant , cinema and stage which holds frequent shows , the cinema also shows some of the recent movies this is a private company and as such the services are also open to members of the public , often discounts are given to students to attend shows at the macrobert
over all the university is set in some stunning grounds , and in the summer allows some really nice walks in rural grounds , that are within easy travel to a busy town centre with ample shopping , a bus station , and train station , along with good motor way links
For me the University of Stirling is the best possible University. It terms of its campus the Uni boasts a beautiful green campus covered in trees and grass. One of the centre points of the campus is the stunning loch which sits right at its heart. The campus also contains its own golf course which no other University campus in Scotland and possibly the UK has. As well as this the rest of the sports facilities are also top notch. The facilities also include:
.good grass pitches maintained by Falkirk Football Club
.a Rubber Crumb all weather pitch
.a 50 metre swimming pool
.indoor games hall
.many indoor tennis courts
.a massive gym
.a full size running track
Secondly i would like to mention the quality of courses offered at Stirling. The university offers courses in a wide range of subjects ranging from business studies all the way through to the likes of global cinema and culture. As well as offering a wide selection of degrees in many different areas the University of Stirling is also known offically as Scotland's University for sporting excellence and is also very highly rated for degrees in business and the arts. However the main reason why i think Stirling offers a great quality of course is the flexibility of the choices available. the University is like no other in terms of the ease of which you can swap and mix courses to find the best possible course for you. For example i began a degree in Sports Studies, however i have now changed my degree programme to Marketing and Sports Studies due to my enjoyment of the Marketing modules i took in my first year. I also know people who have began studying at Stirling doing one degree and have ended up graduating with a completely different one.
However just like with every University Stirling does have its negative points. The main one for me is that in comparison to other Universities the Halls of Residence at stirling are not great. The rooms are a little bit on the small side and they are also a little bit dated.
Having said all this i would highly recommend the University of Stirling to anyone thinking of applying. I believe it offers a unique experience that can not be found at any of the other Universities.
I spent a fantastic 4 years at Stirling University (1999-2003) - 3 years of which, I was living in AKD on campus. The reason I chose to stay on campus for the most part, is clear to see on arrival. The campus itself is a self-contained haven which is more like Center Parcs than any university campus. There is a large loch, a cinema, a theatre, lecture halls, cafes and the student union - all based within the campus, which is surrounded by a wall and only covers a couple of square miles. For some, it feels like a prison; for me, it feels like a resort.
Most of the University was built in the 1960s and thus, still feels modern and fresh. Some will detest the style of architecture, typical of the 1960s, but, for the most part, the flora and trees takes precedence over that. Sports facilities are the best in Scotland - new and modern.
The campus, you see, has been described as the most beautiful in Europe. It is literally covered in coves, lochs, tress and the backdrop is a huge hill. It is truly beautiful in the winter when snow covers the University. The uni has a close-knot family-like atmosphere - not too big and not too small. Again, some will hate this and prefer the hustle and bustle of larger unis and cities. I didnt.
Stirling town centre is a couple of miles down the road, has 30,000 inhabitants and offers everything a student may need. There is a healthy supply of chain pubs and a couple of nightclubs. Campus entertainment can be limited at times and generally winds down at midnight, so for the party-goers, town is frequently a better option.
Teaching is highly-rated at Stirling and lecturers are helpful. I studied Film and Media at Stirling and found the course to be extremely helpful in gaining a job in the media.
All in all, your liking for Stirling is dependent on what you look for in a campus and university. It isn't Manchester or Leeds but much more sublime and relaxed.
Stirling Uni is actually nearer Bridge of Allen but anyway..
Im in my second year of first year here now, i started september 2003 and decided at christmas to take a semester off so have restarted this september 2004.
The plus points for me were the course i wanted at grades i thought i could obtain (i didnt but was lucky), the two semester system (2, 15 week blocks, with 10 teaching weeks and 5 exams weeks), exams before christmas and resits after, so much better than exams after christmas to my mind. Amd of course the campus is gorgeous, it is only let down by the ugly 1960s concrete buildings that are the residences and teaching blocks.
So other than the teaching thing what does stirling have to offer?
The campus is about a 30 minute walk from the centre of stirling or a short bus ride (75p) there are residences both on the campus and in town, personally after first year i would recommend living in either JFC or the Union St blocks.
The nightlife in stirling is limited to Engima and Fubar, but theres the Union on campus thats open quite frequently and also The med and the beat which are situated in The Meadowpark Hotel nealr the main campus entrance. There are a wealth of other, pubs and bars in the town centre it takes sometime to workout where you like as none are typical student bars. Nicky Tams is popular and has live music nights and is opposite Enigma (now called Dusk).
There is also easy access to the two big cities via the railway or the city link coach services.
The shopping centre is great for spending that loan.
The uni is currently upgrading alot of its computer facilities, and when the library and cottrell main labs are full there are all departmental labs open all hours too, but these take some finding. The library is quite scary at first but do the orientation session and youll be fine.
The societies and clubs run on campus well theres plenty of them, some are good some not it just depends what you want from them, personally i joined the subaqua club but as a qualified diver i felt that i wasnt welcomed and ended up leaving the club.
The gym facilities on campus are upto date and modern as Sport Scotland is based on the cmapus so there seem like hundreds ofsports students and students on sport scholarships. The union runs three bars Studio and the Gannochy open all day and Glow/Long bar which are the club section open enough hours to be a good night out.
The accomodation is old and they are in the process of upgrading it, some halls have 'net access but currently most dont. The flats for 2nd/3rd and 4th years are pretty good but ive only seen Alexander Court on campus and Union St where i live. Rents are usually about 2k for the 37 week lets.
There is a bank of scotland on campus along with a 'ripoff' supermarket but tesco is in town so not a problem, also on campus is the book shop and post office with the student union shop (but tesco is usually cheaper).
On campus the Macrobert centre does cinema and theatre productions and there is another cinema in town but these tend to be slightly behind with films as they have between them only 3 screens, but the falkirk multiplex is reachable by train or via the nice friend with a car.
Since ive been up here ive loved it, theres a good mix of work and play without going too overboard on the play unless youre so inclined.
Hi there, thought some of you would like to read my opinion of Stirling Uni from someone who has just finished their first year there: Accomodation There are many halls on campus, and first years go into either AKD, Murray, Geddes, or ASH. I was in Murray and it's like all the others except from AKD and the East side of ASH. AKD is a 37 week let, meaning you stay over xmas, and the east side of ash is en suite. Halls are a great place to live in. I was in Murray last year and had a ball. All halls are portered, meaning there's someone at the door. They'll help you with problems, let you in at night, etc. They're a great laugh - Murray Hall's Captain Ian was a legend! Halls are arranged as rooms on a corridor with a kitchen, shower room, bathroom, and toilets. You get approx 15-18 people to a kitchen, shower, bath, toilets, etc. Now don't worry!!! I was mortified when I heard about this but you don't have to worry - it was a great laugh. You'll end up being so friendly with almost everyone there, and have a great laugh - remember everyone's in the same boat. Each kitchen has 1 oven, a sink, and 1 fridge, which looks HUGE, but once you open it, you've got a smallish lockable compartment, which does hold a surprising amount of stuff. Luckily, there'll always be some unlocked compartments which you can use to store your precious beer! Chances are someone will bring a toaster, Stereo, Microwave etc, if not - just club together - it'll only be £2ish from everyone to buy one! You'll need to bring pots/pans cutlery, etc, but just go to IKEA before you go and get things. There's cupboards to store things in, otherwise use your room. Rooms When you arrive, you'll get a set of keys, and once you open your room, I can guarantee that you'll see it and immediately wish you hadn't! Don't despair. You get about a 4m by 2m room, it'll have a desk, drawers, sink, wardrobe,
bed, and overhead compartment, and possibly shelving running alongside a wall. As rooms go, it's basic but it'll do the job. Believe me you won't be staying in your room much, just using it for sleeping! Murray Hall and most of Geddes has Internet connections in the room, which is great for when it's essay time etc, otherwise I believe that all the halls have the internet on the ground floor. The halls all have a social space, which has a TV Room, possibly a computer room, pool and table tennis tables, seats and tables, and lots of vending machines. They do the job, and most people will congregate here after a night out - good banter! Other things about halls - there's a fire alarm test every wed which means the siren sounds for about 20 seconds between half 10 and 11, you don't need to get up for this, You get a cleaner who's empty your bin and sometimes hoover 3 times a week. You also get fire drills often - you'll get at least 1 on the first week (I got a disciplinary for sleeping in for the drill!) Overall, halls are great for first years, enabling you to make friends and have some great times. Plus it's great if your bored at night, just knock on someone?s door and ask if they fancy a pint. Freshers & Drinking You'll arrive on the Saturday, and instantly be frightened. You won't know anyone, you won't know what to do, and you'll just be stuck in your room with boxes. Well, the Union will have ents (that's short for entertainments) on. It varies what they've got on - it'll be cheap nights though mainly. For the first couple of days, most people will either just stay in the kitchen drinking, or go out every night. Your options are: The Union - the Union is located in the atrium in a part called the Robbins - just along from the shop. This consists of a nightclub and '4' bars - Glow is the nightclub, and the bars are - 'studio', 'long bar
9; 'cocktail bar' and the bar in Glow. Glow - the nightclub, it'll start off by opening 7 odd nights a week, but I can assure you it'll end up only being open wed and sat for the Sports union nights. These are great fun - always packed, £3 on wed and £4 on sat for entry. Drinks vary, but Carling is £1.30 and Vodka/Gin is 60p (90p with a mixer), other drinks are normal prices. Overall, the club is good, though it's only busy these two nights; it's just like any other club though Studio - the bar upstairs, does food during the day and drinks at night. It?s classy but pricey (for a uni) - only real promo's are the £5 pitchers of Carling (4 pints) and wine/occasional bottle offers. On a Sunday it's got a pub quiz (I won it 5 times and came runner up a few times - try and beat us!) Tuesday it's got Karaoke, and it may have other ents on different nights. Long Bar - Open most nights, this is the cheapest bar and always has promos' on - the Legendary 'Billy the Squid' is on a Monday and hopefully will still be on - Every Single Drink is £1 - Brilliant! (can't beat a £1 Stella or Diesel) other nights it'll have some pints for £1 etc, good for a few drinks when you haven't got as much cash for Studio though most times you can buy the drinks at long bar, then go up to studio. Cocktail bar - exactly as it says on the tin, has cocktails, though only open on the Sports Union nights of Wed/Sat. It's alright - Jolly Ranchers are especially good! Gannochy - this bar is located beside the sports centre. It does great food cheap, and had a decend bar. It's a sports bar, so it'll get VERY BUSY on big nights ? i.e. Rangers/Celtic/Scotland games, though it has a great atmosphere on these nights - get there VERY early if you want a seat on these nights (i.e. for the Rangers - man u game, I went at half 5 to get a table in time for a 7:45 KO, and still didn't get a s
eat!) Also, has a rock night on a Friday - only went a couple of times - £1 entry, £1 Strongbow and 90p Jack Daniels. Good if you like loud rock music, otherwise, stick to Glow/Long bar instead. A point about the Union bars - overall their great, but unfortunately they always close the bar 30 minutes before proper closing time. Closing times are, 12pm all days, except, Gannochy - fri 1am, Studio - either 1/2am fri and sat, Glow - wed 1am, sat - 2am. Other Stirling Bars Away from the campus, you've got quite a range. Just outside the uni, there's the Med/the Beat. A bar and Nightclub. It's an alright place, and no doubt you'll at some point end up there when you want to continue drinking after the union has shut! The club is pretty classy, but pricey, though they always seem to have promo's on, like £1.50 beers, and get yourself a beat card, to give you discounted entry. This place is open pretty much 7 days a week, till 2 sun - thur, and 3 fri sat. Though sometimes they have a 3am closing on a wed with free entry. In town, there's 2 main clubs - Enigma and Fubar. They'll both be vying for your custom. Enigma is open most nights, though it's busiest on a Monday (£3/£2 entry and £1 most drinks - great when combined with Billy the Squid, open till 2) and Thursday which is the general student night (same as Monday) Fubar is a big club and always heaving! it's about the same cost wise as enigma, it's just a question of which most of your group prefers. I generally prefer Enigma on Monday, and went equally to Enigma/Fubar on Thursdays. Couldn't tell you about the weekends in town, as most people from uni go home, or stick to the union. Beat. Weekends in town are more suited to the locals! Bars in town vary, but are generally like any other town - an O'neills, other local pubs, a sports bar ect, pricing is generally equal everywhere. The Uni Itself Phew, after all this t
alk of drinking, it'll be a drag to talk to you about what your meant to be there for! The uni is on a campus, with Halls and a Medical centre on one side of a loch, and the academic buildings, union, and shops etc, on the other side. There's a main Atrium on the academic building side. This contains the union, shops (currently, post office & newsagent, susa shop - Staplers, paper etc, bookshop, Bank of Scotland, a 'supermarket' (selling out of date food!!!) a fast food place, a chaplaincy, Haldanes (the catering place) as well as the library and MacRobert centre (Cinema, theatre etc) it also links onto the Teaching buildings, lecture theatres etc. On the other side of the campus, you've got the sports centre - An Olympic sized swimming pool, Gym, tennis courts, squash courts, athletics track, football pitches, multicourts, etc. For a 'small fee' of £72.50 you get an academic year?s membership to these. Giving you access to most of them for free and a small fee for others. Quite good overall, considering that if you were elsewhere you couldn't get the facilities to these for such a small price. You'll have to normally do 3 units in each semester. You?ll have to do certain ones depending on your degree, and you should be able to take a third different one. You'll meet your adviser in the first week and you'll sort it out then. You'll then have to go to the departments where they'll tell you when your lectures are, and to sign up for tutorials. Lectures will only be about a couple a weeks, and these are generally optional. Most notes for these can be found online and printed out to save you having to go or to save you writing notes. Lectures are easy enough to follow - turn up, fall asleep, or listen and take a bit in! Tutorials will be compulsory almost for all subjects. These are when you go to a 'classroom' with about 10 others, and a 'teacher' and talk/write about the subject. They're
pretty easy and not really challenging, depending on your subject. When signing up for your tutorial, try and pick one at a decent time - you don't want one on a Monday or Friday morning (or in general - any morning) when you think you might be out the night before! It's normally a case of 'miss 3 and your out' though some subjects may be lenient, I missed about 7 Cinema tutorials last semester but it was never raised, the topic of me being kicked out of the subject, but don't try to push your luck. You'll be given a reading list for your subject and a list of books to buy, you don't really have to buy these or indeed read these books, as if you bought every book, you'd have no money left. I bought 2 books for business at a total of £75, but only opened one of these once! You'll be given assignments for classes to do, these will generally be essays, though it may be a report, etc. You'll be given an amount of time to do these, though like everyone else, you'll prob end up doing it the night before! Depending on the subject, these assignments will go some way towards your final grade. Exams take place at the end of each semester, - December and May. Most subjects give you an exam though a lucky few subjects have no exam. These are basically exactly the same as your Highers/A-Levels/SAT's ect. All your classes will end about half a month before the exam period to give you 'revision' time. So you can't complain you don't have time to revise (unfortunately!) though at least it's all free time. Free Time/Stirling When you aren?t studying/in classes/drinking! Then you've got free time, and luckily there's a good range of things to do. The Uni has a golf course, putting green, computer labs, a cinema and theatre for you to go to. You can get into town by the Buses, there's about one every 5 mins daily and about 1 every 10/15 mins other times, one way ticket is 75p an
d it takes about 10 mins into town. Stirling has got a bowling alley, Cinema, a shopping centre with all the usual high-street shops. 3 big supermarkets - Tescos in the centre, Sainsbury's about a 10 min walk away, and a Safeways (beside a shopping estate) about a 25 min walk - better for those with cars. There's also a couple of snooker/pool clubs that are quite good. Rileys is £5 for a years student membership, with table time about £2 per person between 10 and 5pm. There's also Spencers club which is home to Stephen Hendry and Marco Fu, don't know about prices, but I think I'll try there when my Rileys run out. Further a field, there's Glasgow/Edinburgh only an hours train ride away if that takes your fancy. Well I?ve ran out of things to write about, but feel free to leave a comment and I?ll try and answer it. I hope this reviews been helpful to you and helps you in your decision to go to Stirling, the website www.susaonline.org.uk is also pretty useful for any questions. You should have a ball here and I hope you'll buy me a pint in Studio!
How many universities in the country can say that on their grounds they have a castle, a cinema, a golf course and a loch? How many can say that they are a five minute walk from a famous range of hills (the Ochils), and at the foot of a monument to one of Scotland's national heroes? How many can say that you get capped by one of the Avengers (Dame Diana Rigg) at your graduation? How many Universities have held European film premieres? The answer: not many, but the University of Stirling has all of the above to offer. Over the years I was at the university (1998-2002), the place has seen many a change: *The building of a state-of-the art centre for the study of Nursing and Midwifery *The building of an Olympic-sized swimming pool with drug testing facilities, and the conversion of the old pool into a modern equipped fitness centre. *A lottery grant awarded to the MacRobert Arts Centre, resulting in a total refurbishment, and the building of well-reviewed facilities for childrens' theatre. Previous to the refurbishment, the Centre hosted the 1995 European premiere of the movie "Braveheart", with guests like Mel Gibson and Catherine Zeta-Jones. *The building of the Iris Murdoch Centre (yes, the same person the movie was about), for research and support for Alzeimers' sufferers and their families. *The gradual refurbishment of all student accomodation. *The constant upgrading of computer facilities to keep ahead with current technology. I can only account for the Psychology, Biology and German departments, and say that the opportunities they offer are wonderful. The basic undergraduate course I undertook gave an introduction to the subject for both those that had done little psychology previously, or none. The taking of units in up to three subjects in first and second year gives you an opportunity to 'suss out' what you like, and, regardless of your UCAS choice, this gives you the fle
xibility to change your degree programme up until mid second-year. The student Union was refurbished in the Summer of 2002, giving birth to the newly christened Studio Bar (formerly Maisie's and The Alehouse). It's not fabulous for a night out, but the nightly cheesy tunes in the 'Glow' club will get every student up on the dancefloor. But, be warned. The University is now taking on more undergraduates than it has accommodation for, and hence, be prepared for long queues to get in on popular nights like on Freshers' week and the Final Fling (the last union night of the semester). Even so, the University is a 5 minute bus ride from Stirling, where you can find the likes of the Fubar club (Thursday night is student night), The Yard and Enigma. At the end of the driveway is the infamous Meadowpark (Med) hotel, which hosts their hugely popular 50p (Smirnoff!) vodka night every Tuesday, and is always packed during the Semester. Stirling University was one of the first Universities in the UK to adopt a US-like semester system, with two semesters of 13 weeks rather than 3 terms of a shorter period. This results in a summer break that is shorter by a fortnight than most other universities, but a winter break that can be up to 7 weeks, as exams are held before Christmas (and, if you're lucky enough, you get them out the way in the first couple of weeks before December. Also note that, doh, exams are also held on Saturdays). In the psychology department in particular, emphasis is on a combination of research, report writing and exams, rather than exams and dreaded 'finals' being the major weighting of your degree classification. This aimed to take the pressure off the end of semester, and resulting in a steady performance rather than letting those who excel at exams zoom ahead. There is a helful careers centre at the university that has several advisors that specialize in specific subjects and faculties, so
there is always someone at hand at the end of your degree who can help you decide where to go from there. Finally, accommodation. Though I stayed at home, off campus, there are several student accommodations on-campus and off-campus. The university will guarantee accomodation to all first years (within reason - you'll be less likely to get accomodation if you live at the end of the driveway!), though you are generally expected to seek off-campus accomodation in one of the four years at university. There are several Center-Parcs style chalets that are generally reserved for final year students because they are in a quiet and peaceful location (but be warned, the internal walls are like paper - live with people you can trust to be quiet!). As stated above, refurbishment is ongoing, and the provision of En-Suite accomodation (though you pay extra for it) is growing. The main residence off-campus is John Forty's court, a ten minute stroll over Stirling Bridge to the centre of town. For those who want to live in the locality, there are buses from Bridge of Allan 3 times per hour, from Dunblane once per hour, from Alloa and Clackmannanshire twice an hour and, most importantly, from Stirling town centre every five to ten minutes during the day. A taxi ride to the University will generally set you back around £5-6 depending on traffic. Overall, my experiences of Stirling will stay with me a long time, especially the impromptu appearance of Wheatus at our graduation ball! Though in an unconventional setting, Stirling provides all that a student could need, and will make sure that you never see rabbits or ducks in the same light again.
Stirling Uni is situated inbetween Edinburgh and Glasgow. It also gives easy reach to the Trossacs and Perth. The uni is situated in Bridge of Allan which is 10 mins outside of Stirling, Bridge of Allan has numerous pubs, takeaways and shops to save students going into Stirling. The campus is one of the most stunning in the UK. The main building, residences and sport centre are situated around the loch. The residences are arranged in blocks, each room as ample storage, desk, bed and a washbasin. There is a kitchen, bathrooms on each floor. There are on-suite rooms available there are situated near the golf course and a bit further away for walking to the lectures in the morning. The uni has a very lively student union which as three pubs are offering food and a nightclub. There is a coffee lounge, coffee shop, pizza place, and the dining hall. The food is reasonably prices and is always available. There is a chemist, newsagent, travel shop and bookshop all of which offer good value of money. The library is well stocked and there is never a long wait for a particular book. The lecture halls are on the ground floor and are modern. The sports centre (Ganochy)offers sport tution as well as a tennis centre and a new for 2001 swimming pool which is also going to be a swimming academy. The Ganochy aslo offers a pub (foods good) and nightclub. The uni is easy to get around with everything in easy reach. Students planning to travel by car should be warned about the lack of parking at the moment we pay £60 and still have to hunt for over an hour for a space. I am in my final year at Stirling and i would choose it again.
I have been trying to plan the whole going to university thing since the age of 9 and while I thought I had it all worked out that just wasn't so. Coming from the north-west of England I always planned to move down south where it was relatively warmer. I have now altered my choices completely and chosen to move to Scotland, in fact, to go to the University of Stiring. Despite being nudged by subject teachers to apply to Oxbridge and the other established and highly regarded universities of England I decided to go my own way, choosing a course at a university which didn't have the highest entry qualifications or that isn't at the top of the league tables. What brought about this decision is not altogether difficult to understand. I always like to find out more about things than are talked about in the brochure so every university I was interested in got a letter or an e-mail from me, requesting more information on certain courses, accomadation etc. Stirling was by far the most prompt in answering my questions and sending me any details. Whilst Cambridge was happy to 'lend' me a video about the university for a modest fee, Stirling was kind enough to send me one free of charge and with no return date. This gave me ample opportunity to watch the video and then pass it on to any other interested students. So far I have been to the university once. I attended an open evening which was clearly meant for those living somewhere in the surrounding area. However, when myself and my parents turned up with our broad sounding lancashire accents the staff were nothing but pleasant. They were glad to have us and made us feel very welcome answering any question we had. So when it came to filling inthat dreaded UCAS form I had no problem putting the University of Stirling down. Now I have made my decision to accept my offer from Stirling and hopefully on September 17th of this year I will officially be a
student of the University of Stirling. My advice to any potential University applicants - don't just look at those league table positions, or the for the universities with the most firsts - really look at the universities. Ask questions and see how much they want you. Go and visit and find out how welcoming they are. Only then will you find where you belong.
Set in the historic and picturesque landscape of Stirling, the University of Stirling well deserves its title of most scenic campus. The sky marble buildings, which I admit aren't the most attractive, surround Loch Airthrey, part of the 17th century estate and castle shadowed by the Wallace memorial which were taken over for the purposes of building the university. It is a very calming and attractive place to study, the summers are great and its like in the American teen movies were all the students sun bathe and play frisby and all that jazz. But the winters are bitter, if not picturesque, as the sign on the loch bridge tells you, no swimming or ice skating, the whether is fitting for both. The campus is also teeming with wildlife, ducks, geese and swans of all descriptions roam around, as do hundreds of squirrles, thousands of rabbits, quite a few bats, a couple of hedgehogs, the odd black mink and many types of wild birds. The university isn't the hardest to get into, but it isn't the easiest, and it is one of the best centres in the country to do film and media, with an amazing staff of semi celebrities, including Simon Frith who writes for Melody Maker, NME and chairs the Mercury Music prize. You may be dissapointed with Stirling its self if you visit, but it isn't that quiet, the shopping centre is renouned all around Scotland, and it has a healthy night life, the Fubar club is also well renouned in Scotland, although these days it isn't up to such a complement, and if this is to modest for you, then Edinburgh and Glasgow are only couple of quid and half an hour or so away. The campus itself has excellent sporting facilities, including the Gannochy Tennis Centre which is of Olympic Standard and is one of Scotland's national tennis centres, Stirling is also due to get Scotland's Olympic swimming pool, and the sporting facilities hosted last years Islamic Olympic games and the Sky Sports Snooker championship. The MacRobert's arts centre on campus offers a great cinema and theatre, where many large productions stop off and many great films at low prices are shown. The centre also hosts many famous comedians who stop off on their tours and some great workshops too, and lets not forget the great productions by the universities own drama group. Stirling is a great place to study if you're an out doors sort or a sporty type, or just if you appreciate the peak of Scottish countryside. I'll leave you with some interesting facts about Stirling university: It has the most scenic campus The largest amount of UFO activity The greatest number of security cameras in Europe (Due to its sporting facilities hosting the Islamic olympic games and the Sky Sports Snooker championship) Britain's safest campus The greatest number of suicides In 1997 it was deemed to have Scotland's ugliest students.