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Uni choices - DD's choice doesn't look great(27 Posts)
DD has offers from Edge Hill, Carlisle, Liverpool John Moores and Wrexham Glyndwr. So far she says Wrexham Glyndwr is her favourite, we got a lovely warm fluffy feeling from the open day and it ticks every box for us, however having done some online research it's languishing at the bottom of the league tables and there are some bad reviews online (but some good too). Should I try to dissuade her or go with her gut feeling?
What does she want to study? Does Wrexham have a particularly good reputation in that field? I have to admit I’d never even heard of it before (I work in HE). It is important that she feels at ease with the Uni she chooses, but I wonder if this isn’t a step too far.
I got my degree in Wrexham way back in the day BUT only because it was closest to Home and I wasn't interested living away from home. Dd in no way wanted to apply there due to the poor ranking and I didn't encourage her to either.
Liverpool John Moores is the best of these. At least it was formerly Liverpool Polytechnic. I’m not sure degrees from the others will count for a great deal especially if they are warm and fluffy! Employers won’t think that’s a great academic institution or a good reason for choosing a university.
Why didn’t you both look at tables beforehand? You appear to have looked within a fairly narrow radius and that’s why the choice isn’t great. Where is the best university for her course? Look at the course tables as well as the university ranking. At least that gives a steer to likely employability. Is the course liked by employers?
Depends on course and subject etc...I went to a low ranking uni (was not even a uni then) but have a good job...it was a great and unique course.
Of all of those Liverpool John Moores is the best in terms of having some prestige and higher league table positioning... But it's not a very strong bunch. The exception would be if the specific course she wanted at one of those unis was highly ranked/regarded and had strong links to industry and employers. This does happen.
Why does she want to go to uni? Because tbh, to have a warm and fluffy experience is not exactly the purpose of it, and the weaker the university the more incentive they have to do a hard sell about how everyone is sooooo happy here. It's your Dd's life, but a poorly ranked course at a poor institution may end up leaving her in a worse position (and substantially more in debt) than, say, going into employment or an alternate route like the Open University or a degree apprenticeship.
She is doing Professional Policing BSc. All universities we have seen have strong links with the local constabularies and many students (over 80% in most cases including Wrexham) are recruited into the local constabulary and she really wants that.
When I say warm and fluffy I mean we just got “the feeling”. We didn’t get that at other universities (Teesside, Nottingham Trent, Sheffield Hallam), it just felt like a conveyor belt and very impersonal. The tutor at Wrexham spoke to us one on one for over an hour. I did like that.
A little bit of advice I heard at an open day was university education costs the same wherever you go so why not chose the best you can get into!
OK thanks Jufus that is critical information. If she is doing Policing and the course has strong links to local forces she can crack on and go where she liked. It would be different if she were planning on, say, English or Psychology there. (I admittedly know nothing about the range of courses at Wrexham.)
I would imagine for her career she will then get the chance to move around the country for training and jobs so prob great to go with where she likes the feel of the place.
I have learned not to interfere, coaxing them in one direction or another, they have to decide for themselves, if it all goes wrong they have no one to blame. Your child is old enough now to make own decisions about their life. Let them live it!
That's a fairly expensive way to get into the police isn't it? Or will she be looking at a fast track scheme for promotion from it?
From Jan 2020 a degree is required to join the police. The only other way of doing it is a degree apprenticeship and DD doesn’t want to work a 50+ hour week and study on top, plus she would like the experience of university.
Then she should go to Wrexham.
I have a friend who turned down Oxford in favour of Hull...and still went on to become the youngest professor I know of in my discipline. It’s important to feel at ease at Uni.
Large police hub very close to the uni so that puts it in a better light straight away.
Funny, isn't it - the entry requirement for thevrelative 'big name' LJMU (CCC) is the same as the bottom end of the requirement for the course at the University of Cumbria (96 - 112 UCAS points, CCC - BBC). Edge Hill asks for 112 - 120 (BBC - BBB), Wrexham Glyndwr 112 (BBC).
I had to look it up, I must admit, but the Professional Policing degree (BSc or BA) has to be on the list of courses licensed by the College of Policing to do what you want it to do, ì.e. qualify you academically for entry into policing (provided you apply within 5 years and meet other recruitment criteria). So as long as the institution / course is on the list, where you actually go would really seem to be a matter of personal preference. Bit like Architecture. Or Medicine, but with a bit better chance of success in choosing a location rather than all that tactical applying.
Then tge course is very valid reason to choose the uni with best vibe ..support her choice to go to wrexham
As long as Wrexham gives a decent life to a student! Insular and a bit remote doesn’t suit all because social life is limited. Liverpool, Sheffield and Nottingham are renown university cities. So completely different. The degree is the same for all and with police recruitment they probably won’t care where the degree comes from. However more fun in the cities and better local employment prospects too I would have thought.
Also what grades they ask for doesn’t mean they only take students with these grades. Are the courses over subscribed? Probably not. The degree isn’t likely to be worth much outside of policing so this also means university won’t matter much. Other than for employment and social life.
Thanks all for the input. I think I’m worrying too much. DD is not interested in socialising (doesn’t drink) she has told me she has no desire to go out partying, she just wants to get a part time job and carry on with her competitive dancing as a hobby (very good dance school near the uni which we have visited).
There is more to cities than drinking culture. My DDs don’t drink much but they liked the city vibe and cultural aspects. I would have thought this has value. Dance schools are everywhere. There’s a lot of socialising in the police I believe. Is she really wanting to work with people when she doesn’t socialise? It’s a bit like being a teacher when you don’t like children! Perhaps she’ll feel differently at university but it’s not a good idea to go and steadfastly stay aloof.
Bubbles I am sure she will begin to socialise at Uni, but being a summer baby and not 18 until end of July, she hasn't really had much chance to go out with her cohort who are already 18, and indeed much prefers to socialise at her dance school with children of mixed ages. She is fine with talking to people and very mature, probably only child syndrome! She has wanted to be a Police Officer since the age of 6, there is no Plan B (which scares me too!)
Is there any way you can get info from the other end.....ie; do police forces rate one of the unis above the others?
I’m a university lecturer in a “professional” degree course and I know the local establishments generally prefer students from x uni over y uni. Of course there’s always exceptions but the general belief is that the teaching is better at one uni and therefore you get a higher calibre of employee at the end.
What are things like the student drop out rates like? Student satisfaction rates? Ratio of staff to students? Spending per student?
Having a good feeling about a uni and course is important but don’t base it all on whether a lecturer had time to talk to you on an open day or not. I consider myself a supportive lecturer who goes above and beyond for students but I don’t have time to talk to students for an hour on an open day as we’re so busy. I can get 100 plus people coming to talk to me in one day. So sadly they can be like conveyor belts but that doesn’t reflect the teaching/support once on the course.
When dd picked her degree course she was torn between two. Uni A she had a better feeling about and Uni B had a better ranking but also better satisfaction, better staffing, lower attrition rate. She went for B in the end and is very happy.
My DD was an August baby! It really doesn’t mean they are socially reticent. Mine no doubt lied about her age and had fake IDs. That’s how they actually joined in and matured in the same way as the older DC. Mine refused to be sidelined. However as a police entrant this might not be a good idea!
I think the above advice from a lecturer is very sound. You do find that choosing a university at 17 with little experience is daunting so knowing what makes a university and a course worth going to is important.
Edge Hill is excellent.
However I'm sure your daughter will make the right choice, she sounds as though she knows what she wants.
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