After visiting an Aston University open day, it was clear that the lecturers were really passionate about their subject areas and the class sizes were going to be small and very student-centred. I really like that Aston University is on one campus and this encourages a sociable and friendly atmosphere. Even when I moved off the campus in second year, I still received regular emails about events at the university, so I still felt updated about all of the happenings on campus.
With regards to studying at Aston, I have found it really enjoyable, as the staff take the time to get to know your names and they are really approachable. I often go to talk to my lecturers about elements of a particular module that I am struggling with and they are always happy to discuss any research ideas that I have. I enjoy the fact that the assessments are varied for each module, as I have had the opportunity to do exams, reports, group projects and oral presentations.
I embraced the opportunity to take a placement with LSS and found the placements staff extremely useful, as they helped me with job applications and my CV. I worked as a teaching assistant at an international school in Malaysia and the placements office regularly contacted me to check on my progress.
My placement year enabled me to gain invaluable teaching experience which is vital when applying for a PGCE or any other route into teaching. I was also able to directly apply the knowledge learnt from studying certain modules at Aston University to my placement. For example, after studying a module entitled ‘Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages’, I established an English Language Support Programme at the school where I spent my placement.
I enjoy studying in Birmingham, as there are always things to do around the city whether it’s watching an Aston Villa match, enjoying the nightlife or shopping in the Bullring!'
Abbey got a place on a secondary English PGCE at the University of Chichester in September 2012.