Cost of Living:
Shops & Banks:
I am a final year student at the University of Bath, studying for a masters degree in Physics. I would agree that the size of the university creates a great sense of community; however, I would like to address some of the concerns raised in another review.
Those of my peers who have needed additional support from the university have found that the physics and learning support departments deal with their needs in a helpful and professional manner. In the case of illness, the department is highly sympathetic and accommodating, encouraging students to register for mitigating circumstances if they feel anything may have affected their performance throughout the semester. Mitigating circumstances may include anything from illness to personal problems. In order to register for mitigating circumstances, a student must complete and submit a form to their department, who provide the student with a signed copy. All mitigating circumstances relating to an individual student are taken into consideration when the board of examiners meet to decide on that student's final degree classification (i.e. 1st, 2:1, etc.)
The head of department for physics is changed every 3 years, so 3 different academics have taken this role since the last reviewer (py7rjs) was studying here. Personally, I have always found the head of department to be incredibly helpful and friendly. At the end of each year external examiners invite a selection of finalists to attend a non-compulsory viva. This involves a panel of examiners asking an individual student questions to determine their knowledge of the entire physics course. The viva helps the external examiners to ensure that all physics degrees in the UK are awarded at the same standard. The viva may provide evidence for a student's degree to move up a classification but cannot decrease their mark. Although the department will recommend students at classification boundaries (~2% below), the final choice of which students should attend a viva is with the external examiners.
I have found the course to be interesting and varied. The lecturers are enthusiastic about their subject and willing to explain anything in further detail. Although it can be challenging, the feeling of fully understanding a complex idea is immensely rewarding. The skills you learn through the course are highly transferable and can be of use in a number of industries. The careers service is also very useful in helping physicists learn about sectors in which they may use their abilities.
After their first year, most students move off campus (those with medical reasons are able to remain). The majority of students live in Oldfield Park, which is close to town and Sainsburys supermarket (~10mins walk). This creates a close-knit student community in town. A number of other areas with private student accommodation also exist, covering the whole of Bath (e.g. Combe Down, Widcombe, Bear Flat, etc.) Although few students are able to keep cars, the public transport is very good with buses at peak times going to and from campus every 6 minutes. The city also has a train station with services to a large number of destinations, especially via Bristol (~10mins away by train). I regularly walk down the hill (either Widcombe or Bathwick) to get home as this reduces the cost of buses and the views are spectacular, even in winter.
Written by nc238 on 11th Nov 2008