Changing Uni (and course!) after first year

(15 Posts)
MumWillDoIt Sun 28-Apr-13 12:39:03

Thanks creamteas you've been really helpful - you sound lovely, I bet you have students beating a path to your door to share their problems smile

I'm passing all the info on to DS and he's going to start making proper enquries this week.

He had a year out (working full time) prior to starting uni so he's already 20. I think he feels he needs to 'crack on' now and get himself sorted as soon as possible.

creamteas Sun 28-Apr-13 08:57:18

mumwilldoit

If he wants to change course and uni then that should be possible. It is probably worth while contacting the admissions tutors now and having a chat with them (its a quite time for us!). Make sure he visits all possibilities and try to get a feel for the place.

Is he aiming to start in the next academic year? This might be possible, if he contacts places now.

But a better option might be to take a year out, and really think through his decision. He could ask if it is possible to sit in a couple of lectures to see if this really is the right decision for him (I always encourage transferring students to do this to ensure that this really is the right move for them).

BTW don't assume there will be part-time jobs anywhere at the moment. There are not enough jobs going available at the minute, and many people who want full-time work are having to take part-time jobs instead. So typical student jobs are being filled by people with years of work experience and despite being in a city many of my students are struggling to find work.

MumWillDoIt Sat 27-Apr-13 21:02:08

creamteas thank you for that.

DS has spoken to his course leader recently so she knows he's having doubts. Obviously he will need to speak to her again soon.

He really feels that he has chosen the wrong degree and, to be honest, I did query his choice. The new one would be more in line with what his original A levels were geared towards (if he can get accepted!) but different to his current course so no option for 2nd year transfer I wouldn't think.

The actual place is also an issue for him - he's not happy there - hasn't been able to find a part time job (nor have many of his friends) and just feels he'd be happier in the new town.

Thank you for saying it's 'more common that you think' - that makes me feel more postive

creamteas Sat 27-Apr-13 18:20:56

I see lots of students in this position, and before any decisions are made I would advise really thinking through the details of why he is unhappy.

Often it is predominantly one area (course or place), with a knock on effect on the other. Working out what the main issues are helps to decide what to do next.

Has he spoken to anyone at his uni? If he has not done so yet, this should be the first thing to do. Not just because they will be used to dealing with this, but also as they will be asked for a reference if he wants to change uni.

If it is the course that is the main issue, he might be able to change course at the same uni. This will just be a transfer and although he will do an extra year, it is really simple to sort out.

If it is the place, then do approach other uni and explore going straight into year 2. This will only be possible if the first years are similar, but it would mean that he won't need to pay for an extra year.

Above all, don't worry about this. It is more common than you think!

MumWillDoIt Sat 27-Apr-13 16:47:31

Thank you all so much for replying - sorry I posted and ran this morning!

So it looks like it is feasible after all.

boomting if he so much as hinted at changing his mind again I would kill him with my bare hands!

Really appreciate everyone's help - thank you.

boomting Sat 27-Apr-13 16:18:58

The funding formula is:
1 year + Length of new degree course - years already done at uni = years of funding available

So as your son has only done one year at his current uni, he will be fully funded. HOWEVER, if he was to change his mind again, or have to repeat a year, then he wouldn't be funded at all for the first year(s) of his degree, and all fees and living expenses would have to be paid upfront.

boomting Sat 27-Apr-13 16:18:56

The funding formula is:
1 year + Length of new degree course - years already done at uni = years of funding available

So as your son has only done one year at his current uni, he will be fully funded. HOWEVER, if he was to change his mind again, or have to repeat a year, then he wouldn't be funded at all for the first year(s) of his degree, and all fees and living expenses would have to be paid upfront.

Madratlady Sat 27-Apr-13 13:48:27

It may have changed recently, but as far as I'm aware you can get up to 4 years of student finance, so as long as he changed onto a 3 year course he'd be ok.

senua Sat 27-Apr-13 13:44:35

Have you tried The Student Room?

senua Sat 27-Apr-13 13:44:13

Students' tuition fees are subsidised. I know it's all very expensive but the State does pick up some of the tab. They changed the rules recently to stop people having this subsidy repeatedly (eternal student syndrome). You can now only have one first-degree* at the reduced rate; if you do another first-degree then you have to pay full rate, like an overseas student.
Your DS's degree will be his one shot, so if he's not enjoying it then it make sense to change because he won't get the chance again.

* i.e. you have finished the degree and graduated.

YohedYoshoulderYonisandYotoes Sat 27-Apr-13 11:56:34

Depending on the course, if it is similar-ish he might be able to go direct into year 2 - year 1 in most courses is usually sub a-level standard and more about the culture of independent learning etc...

noddyholder Sat 27-Apr-13 11:50:37

I think you can do this and just add it on to the overall debt/loan.

ReluctantlyBeingYoniMassaged Sat 27-Apr-13 11:49:13

I did it too, but it was 1997.

DolomitesDonkey Sat 27-Apr-13 11:48:20

A million years ago just before fees, I changed my course and it was covered. Back then you were allowed to change course and institution after one year with no financial penalty. I should hope it's the same in theory - i.e., just another year of fees.

MumWillDoIt Sat 27-Apr-13 11:45:57

Namechanged as I might want to let DS read the replies!

DS is weeks away from completing his first year at uni. I know he has been unhappy for a while - not enjoying the course, doesn't like the town - it's just generally making him miserable.

He is undecided about returning for the 2nd year and is now thinking about a complete change and studying a different course at a new uni. He has investigated and there are still places available on his chosen course through 'extra' BUT - how on earth does this work regarding student finance?

He's already got his SF documents through confirming it for next year. Obviously he won't be transferring - he'll be starting afresh. He won't be entitled to the full wack as he's already had a year's worth will he?

I've trawled SF website looking for answers - UCAS too - don't seem to be able to find any similar scenarios.

Half of me wants to kill him and the other half wants to help him. I do feel he needs to change for his own happiness but ... aaaaargh!

Should add he hasn't actually made any concrete enquiries yet about the other course but I want him to have all the facts about how this might impact financially before he starts looking into this.

Any advice/knowledge greatly appreciated - thanks.

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