Natalia Krasnikova from Russia

Natalia Russia
Natalia Krasnikova

Course: PhD, Finance and Accounting Group, Business School

Where from/ Nationality: Russia/Russian

Previous University: International Development for my Undergraduate Degree at University of Bath. Master’s Degree in Accounting and Finance at Aston.

What influenced you to come and study at Aston?  
One of the main reasons I decided to study at Aston is because of its research excellence and internationally recognized reputation. I started my education at Aston University as a Master’s student in 2009. I have chosen this particular course as it contained modules I was interested in and it was actually recommended to me by a few people I knew. I realized that during one year I gained a lot of experience and knowledge, and that has influenced my decision to apply for PhD programme here at Aston.

Tell us about your programme of study.  Modules, exams, workload, practical experience, study hours/timetable, lecturers, etc.  

It usually takes 3 years to complete PhD. During first year of PhD programme we were required to attend four Research Methods modules and submit 2 assignments for each module. These modules were designed in a way to learn basics about the research process so that it would help us to apply this knowledge to our own practice.

During 2nd and 3rd there are no lectures at all, all time must be devoted to independent work which is discussed with supervisor. Meetings with supervisor usually take place once or twice a month.

What do you like about studying at Aston and living in Birmingham?


  1. I have also completed my Masters Degree at Aston and I really appreciated the support of all lecturers and our course director and that is one of the main reasons why I decided to stay at Aston to complete my PhD.
  2. I met a lot of people from different countries and that was an extremely interesting experience.
  3. Aston has a convenient central location which makes it easily accessible from different parts of Birmingham


  1. Cultural life in Birmingham is very interesting; there is an Art Gallery, Symphony Hall, various music festivals taking place during the year, etc.
  2. Location is another important factor. It is quick and convenient to get to the other parts of the country.

Aims for the future: what do you hope to do when you graduate and how do you think Aston might help you achieve them? 

After completing PhD I am really hoping to stay in academia. I enjoy teaching a lot; therefore, my plan is to develop my career in this area.

What are the differences between studying at Aston in the UK compared with studying in your home country?


I have not been studying at university in Russia, but judging from school experience I can say that English education is orientated more towards independent study. Teachers and lecturers here encourage greater participation which makes learning environment more comfortable and friendly. 

What is the student mix on your programme like and what have you learned from them?

Students come from various countries and it is a great advantage to be able to mix with people from different backgrounds. It is one of the main advantages of Aston that community here is very diverse and friendly.

My Experience at Aston University