From Jordan to Preston
Originally from Jordan, Saleem has maximized his time in the UK by combining studying Law at the University of Central Lancashire with exploring different areas of the country, having also completed a foundation programme with ONCAMPUS UK North.
"I liked the idea of UCLan for many reasons including: its large population of diverse students, its ranking in the World University Rankings (top 3.7%), its mixture of old and new buildings and I liked the degree programme and the subjects it contained."
Getting into university
"I used the agent Knowledge Well in Jordan and found them really helpful with my application and I also liked that they do the IELTs exams there instead of going to the British Council. They also gave me plenty of choices when it came to the universities, which again I liked.
"My first impressions were positive. I liked the fact there is a mixture between old and new buildings, such as the Law School in Harris building which is a very old, original university building. The systems of the university were easy to understand and I was able to settle in quickly."
Adjusting to a different education style
"I found the university system here in the UK easier to understand and study in due to the mixture of assessments, such as presentations, coursework and exams. In Jordan it tends to be only exams and if this is not a student’s strength it can be difficult to get good grades.
"I would say all of the course so far has been enjoyable; it offers interesting subjects and it is enjoyable to learn about these different subject areas. The most challenging part was to learn how to read and understand cases and write about them in assessments because this was new to me and I had to really try hard to understand how to do this."
Support from tutors
"I have found my tutors to be really helpful and apart from this they also make the modules interesting and enjoyable, even if you don’t particularly find the subject interesting. The tutors and professors respond very well to queries and are also very knowledgeable about the subjects that they teach. They understand where we as students struggle with new work and help us to overcome this."
The Foundation Pathway to improving language level
"Before my course at UCLan I undertook the ONCAMPUS Foundation Pathway. When I first arrived I found the staff there very welcoming and they explained to me everything I needed to know.
"I needed to improve my language level, particularly my writing due to English and Arabic being completely different. This foundation programme helped me to do this and also helped me to settle into university life in the UK - it is very useful to give you an understanding of what is expected from you at university level, such as, plagiarism, academic essay writing and other types of assessments. It helped me to improve my English level and my confidence in studying in a new country."
Social life and the culture in Preston
"It’s easy to make friends here as an international student because there are loads of societies and student activities. Now I am living in private accommodation, however, when I was doing the foundation year I stayed in UCLan accommodation. I liked the fact gave me the chance to meet others and I found it to be a nice experience at the beginning because I had just moved here.
"I like Preston as it has everything (shops and restaurants) that a student would need while living here. It is centrally located to many other towns and tourist attractions such as the Lake District, Blackpool, Lancaster and bigger cities like Liverpool and Manchester. It has great train and bus transportation links and Manchester Airport is close and convenient for international travel (1 hour by train)."
The highs of student life
"Since being here I have visited so many places: London, Blackpool, Birmingham, Scotland, the Lake District, Manchester, Liverpool, and Belfast (Ireland). Usually in my spare time I am travelling around the UK, trying new restaurants as I have an interest in cooking and cuisine, and sometimes reading books.
"You will not be disappointed at UCLan. It’s a nice experience because it gives you the opportunities to be successful, independent and to find your career. It helps you to become more self-aware and it helps you to enhance your knowledge. UCLan is a lively and friendly place where you will meet a variety of people and gain knowledge and experience. The three words I’d use to describe the University are: knowledge, opportunity and employability."