It has come to the end of my degree, and as I’ve had a few asks about my time there, I thought I’d make a post with my honest opinions.
I thoroughly enjoyed my first and second years at NUA. I always managed to get a solid 2:1 at the end of each term. I think 65 was my highest, and my marks were always consistent. I loved my tutors from the second year the most - Fiona, Emily, and Matthew - they’re the best. I also really loved Chris from 3rd year, although, he wasn’t in often. They were always so nice and positive, involved all of us in all the activities at uni, and we all got a fair chance to get involved in everything they had to offer us.
My third year however, has been a different story, and many others on my course will agree with me. I don’t want to put anyone off going to NUA, it’s a great University. But the way the third year staff handled a few things, has turned my experience into a negative one.
I’ll start off with my final grade. As i said, I was a solid 2:1 throughout first and second year. Averaging around 65. Well this year, both terms, I have been given 55’s. I have worked equally as hard, and my work is to just as good a standard. I felt from the first term, that i had been misjudged. I’m not sure if the tutors thought I was one of the people who don’t participate much, or make much effort. But I feel my shyness might have been mistaken for not giving a crap or being arrogant - I’m the opposite! I admit I didn’t speak up much in crits or tutorials, but I’ve suffered with shyness my whole life - and in fact, in the past it has been far more than just a case of being shy. I’ve had quite a few problems! So this brings my final grade to a 2:2 - something I’m very disappointed about, and I feel very misunderstood.
The other thing which has ruined the experience, this time not just for me, but for many others on the course too, is that the tutors appeared to have their favourites towards the end of the year, and these same people have been chosen for everything - none of the others have been given a chance or even been notified of their involvement.
In the second term, we started having workshops for setting up our Degree Show. At first we were all involved, and it was great, but gradually, we stopped being told about meetings, and it was the same groups of people sorting it all out, without the rest of us getting a look in. I have nothing against my fellow students, but feel the tutors could have handled this better and allowed the rest of us to be more involved.
We also found out that the favourite people had got chosen to represent our course at D & AD in London, and we weren’t even notified by email that they had been chosen. We all gradually found out through being friends with people on Facebook.
There have also been stories of people going into uni recently after setting up their work for the Degree Show, and finding half their work has been taken down.
I am very disappointed in the way tutors have handled things this year. I don’t want to give my Uni a bad review, because it will make my degree even more worthless to me now. But it’s just made the last 3 years feel like a waste for me (for the grade I got). Although, I am so glad I chose to go to NUA, as it is now a part of who I am, and has given me my independence to be away from home. I am going to appeal my final grade, as I think something isn’t right there. I worked really hard on my final outcome, and feel I should be at a 2:1. I don’t know how difficult that is, but wish me luck. I apologise to anyone on my course reading this who disagrees with what I have just said - feel free to comment if you do. I’m just telling my experience, and I know a lot of people feel the same about some of the points I have made.