Choosing a university for a masters degree

(14 Posts)
Decorhate Fri 15-Mar-19 20:17:09

A friend is looking for help with this. They don’t live in the UK so don’t have much knowledge of UK universities.

He has offers to do his masters at a couple of different places. I think the university reputation matters more for post-grad but I’m aware that some lower ranking unis can be better for certain subjects at undergraduate level but don’t know if that is the same for post grad.

Anyone got hints on how to research this?

I think he will want to move back to his home country eventually so maybe he should choose the one that will be more well known?

OP’s posts: |
titchy Fri 15-Mar-19 22:16:03

If he intends to move back to his home country then he should look at the one that is highest in the international league tables.

Decorhate Fri 15-Mar-19 22:45:50

Good point thanks

OP’s posts: |
anniehm Fri 15-Mar-19 22:52:05

The most important thing is the course content, they vary a lot so look at the prospectuses online. Another factor is cost - masters cost similar amounts but living costs vary dramatically around the country, avoid the se if this is a factor. Reputation for the department is of anything more important than the university as some offer more specialists in certain fields than others.

Obviously there's two obvious elite universities but below that any of the pre 1992 universities will offer a decent masters along with many of the post 92, it depends upon what you are looking for eg how it's examined, how vocational it is? I'm not sure employers overseas will rank one red brick university over another enough to make the league tables (which are so flawed) a factor over actually liking the course!

Decorhate Fri 15-Mar-19 22:58:24

I think he wants to stay in academia long term. The choice is between Edinburgh & Royal Holloway. I hadn’t even heard of RH till a few years ago so I’m thinking Edinburgh might be better (as long as the content is what he wants)

OP’s posts: |
JocelynBell1 Sat 16-Mar-19 00:17:32

If your friend plans on returning to his home country, the international reputation of the university is important. Edinburgh is ranked at #18 in the international league tables while Royal Holloway is at #236.

Stopyourhavering64 Sat 16-Mar-19 09:17:58

My dd did her MSc at Edinburgh. She was applying for teaching jobs abroad and posted her cv online just as she was finishing her dissertation....she got 12 job offers within 24 hrs of posting as Edinburgh is very highly thought of abroad ( there were dozens of foreign students on her course who came to Edinburgh because of its research reputation worldwide )


Decorhate Sat 16-Mar-19 09:27:38

Thanks all. It really sounds less like Edinburgh is the best choice - unless he really prefers the course at RH

OP’s posts: |
Ox136jl Sat 16-Mar-19 09:31:37

I think it’s Royal Holloway, University of London - the University of London is very prestigious internationally as well surely? Sounds like either would be fine!

Decorhate Sat 16-Mar-19 10:16:57

The University of London is an amalgamation of several colleges. Some better know than others. They tend to get ranked separately on league tables.

OP’s posts: |
CountessVonBoobs Sat 16-Mar-19 10:19:14

Unless Royal Holloway is a very highly ranked department for his specific course (which is possible), that's a no-brainer. Edinburgh.

Decorhate Sat 16-Mar-19 11:07:49

It’s for Classics Countess

OP’s posts: |
Aurignacian Sat 16-Mar-19 12:09:33

I’m at Edinburgh doing an MSc in that department (but not classics). It’s fantastic and has an amazing reputation.

When I was chooses courses I was advised by a friend (senior academic) to go for the highest rated university. I did this and haven’t regretted my choice even though it was more expensive and less convenient.

Aurignacian Sat 16-Mar-19 12:10:00

Sorry choosing not chooses

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