Undergraduate students from the University of Birmingham discuss the main differences between school and university in terms of learning style and what is expected from you as a student.
Title: Differences between school and university
Duration: 3.13 mins
S1 The main difference about university is that you need to be self-motivated. There’s no-one here to prompt you, tell you what to do anymore; you’ve really got to do it on your own back.
S2 The main difference I’ve found between school and university is the independent learning, which is a big shock to the system after you’ve come from college and secondary school.
S3 The main difference is, well for me between school and university, just the first time you go to a lecture theatre and you’re suddenly surrounded by 250 other people and you’re no longer in a class of 25 where you all know the teacher and you’ve got that relationship and you know what’s going on. It is you, 250 others and a lecturer at the front with a PowerPoint presentation. It can be really quite daunting to start off with but you soon get into the swing of it and kind of work out what notes you need to be taking and what you’re doing and you start to get to know people a bit more.
S4 It’s very different studying at university than it was at A-level at school when you’re there from 9.00 until 4.00 every day and pretty much you’re told what to learn and you’re given all the answers to the exams basically.
S5 There's been a big difference between school and university. I’ve found here how to do a lot of independent work, how to go and use the library, using internet resources and stuff.
S6 The University is very much about independent learning, you’ve got to be very self-motivated and develop skills like critical thinking. You’ve got to be able to go to the library and work on your own.
S7 Independent learning is all about learning on your own, motivating yourself to do your own work, studying in your own time, the thing that you don’t do in lectures like reading books, going over old exam questions and things like that.
S8 You have to have the dedication to go to the library and do it yourself.
S9 You just get used to it. You just get used to going into the library, reading about the lecture you’re just come out of and then going to a seminar and having to talk about the subject with passion.
S10 You don’t have teachers running after you 24/7 to hunt down work. Lecturers give you knowledge that you somehow have to learn. You’re not taught; you’re given knowledge from academics that you have to learn.
S11 There’s a lot more on you to sort of go out there and do your own research and formulate your own opinions on things, not to sort of be spoon fed, which I guess was the case through A-levels and definitely GCSEs.
S12 The lecturers kind of set you in the right direction and show you where to go but it’s up to you to go and do the research.
S13 Basically you are just given a very broad outline of what’s required and it’s up to you to bring to it your own personal perspective and to kind of make the question your own and the research your own.
S3 Help’s always there but you have to go and get it. It’s very much proactive independent learning and if you don’t understand something you can look it up and then if you still don’t get it you can go and find someone. They’re not always chasing you up and that’s possibly the main difference really.
S14 For me it’s been very interesting because you learn things that you might not get told in lectures and I’ve found that to be some of the most interesting learning that I’ve done so far at university, actually going out and finding the necessary information that I need to do the assignments I’ve been given.
S15 It’s actually quite satisfying spending a lot of time in the library drawing together a lot of information and finally at the end you can present something, you know, into the office that you’re really, really proud of researching and almost being an expert on.
END OF RECORDING