Originally, I applied to do Communications and Media at Loughborough but on results day, having achieved an A in A Level Sociology, I realised that I wanted to carry it on in my degree because it enabled me to learn things from a variety of disciplines, from History to Politics, Psychology to Religion.
My favourite thing about the course was being able to take a variety of different modules, that suited a variety of interests. For example, in first year, I was able to choose Communications and Media, Social Psychology, and Criminology and Social Policy modules, all of which I was highly interested in. Other options included Languages, Politics and Human Geography, and the choice increases during second year, so there really was something for every kind of Sociology student.
My favourite module on the course was the second-year module Forensic Psychology. I enjoyed it because it was gripping and, dare I say it, scary, which makes learning about it all the more interesting. We got to learn about a variety of topics, such as criminal and victim characteristics, different offences, punishment and treatment. The lecture was really interactive and engaging through videos and audio clips. Furthermore, there were a lot of relevant examples and ways to link the module into society today, which helped you to understand the ideas presented.
The teaching quality of the course was just phenomenal; The Times ranked Loughborough University 2nd for Sociology in 2014 and it really showed in the teaching. The lecturers were all outstandingly knowledgeable on the topics and could answer pretty much any question you had. Often, the lecturers would be the ones who wrote the books you were using in your learning, so it was pretty cool to be able to have them share their ideas firsthand. Although, it was a bit surreal to be critiquing a book that was written by your lecturer who then marks your critical analysis!
The lectures were also interesting because they were often interactive, with videos and ‘Sociological Interludes’, meaning you didn’t get bored! The Social Sciences department was also using ‘Lecture Capture’, where lectures are recorded, meaning that if you needed to go over a topic again for revision or just to clarify information, you had the freedom to do so. The labs were in smaller groups than the lecturers, so it gave you a chance to work in a more small-scale environment, so you could get more individual feedback, almost like a class at school.
The department were supportive and helpful from the very start of my journey at Loughborough. During my adjustment period of switching from Communications and Media to Sociology, I was abroad on holiday so I thought it would be difficult to make all the necessary arrangements, but the department were so accommodating and friendly; it definitely showed me that this was where I wanted to be.
To anyone considering this course, definitely come to the open and visit days. It gives you a chance to look around the campus, talk to course leaders and meet current students to give you an idea of what the course entails.
If you can’t do that, join the Social Sciences department group on Facebook, where you can pose questions to current students as well as potential students who may be in the same position as you. Make sure you read the course profile as well so you have an idea of the modules you have to take, as well as the ones you can choose.
The social atmosphere of Loughborough definitely added to the Loughborough student experience. There were so many activities to join, literally anything you could think of! Most of the social activities you could join were offered through the Students’ Union, but this doesn’t mean they all revolve around going out and drinking. There were so many things you could do outside of this, such as volunteering, taking part in various societies, sports, etc. In first year, there was a freshers’ bazaar where you got to see all the societies and clubs and I really recommend putting your name down for as many that interest you. You don’t have to be a member of all of them, but just signing up will give you more information and you get to meet a new crowd of people with similar interests!
The best thing about being a Loughborough University student was the fact that you are studying at a place with such an amazing reputation, and meeting so many different people from all walks of life, from all areas of the world. It is said an awful lot but being at Loughborough is really the time of your life; the University really values its students and wants them to have as many opportunities as possible.
Neeya graduated from Loughborough University in 2016.