Meet our most recent international guest blogger Chia-Ju Li (Jenny), who completed the 7-week pre-sessional English course last summer and is currently studying on MA Fashion Business Management at Westminster. Read her post below to learn more about her student life in London as part of the pre-sessional English programme.
My pre-sessional English course was 7 weeks from 18th July to 2nd September. My roommates and I were really excited on the first day. The Regent Campus was really great, I loved the environment and elegant architecture. I had classes from Monday to Friday, from 10:00-13:00 in the morning to 14:00-16:00 in the afternoon, and I was free on Wednesday afternoons (Happy^^). However, it was not free every week, the university would provide some useful workshops for us regarding student visas and student life information (Why?? I just wanted to have fun and play!). On the exam day, I was really surprised when I first went to the exam classroom, it was so beautiful!
I lived in student accommodation on Harrow Campus. It was a little far from my place to Regent Campus, it would take me over 30 minutes. At the beginning, I was not used to the weather in London and easily felt tired. Therefore, I usually went home after class. The life in Harrow was lots of fun! My roommates and I often bought and cooked food by ourselves. Therefore, we saved so much money and also learned how to get along with different people. We also shared our diverse lives with each other when we had dinner together or just spent our time in the kitchen. Although we all came from Asian countries, it was interesting that we used different words to describe the same things and experiences.
At weekends, I would go to weekend markets with my classmates. We tried the different kinds of food and bought some fresh vegetables. In addition, my roommates and I went to lots of museums, as they are free! You can spend all afternoon in the museum, viewing the paintings, pictures, traditional garments and understanding history. My classmates and roommates all came from different backgrounds and disciplines, so I learned a lot from them, not only the knowledge, but also different cultures and customs. It was great that I had this experience!
My top tips for new students
1) Explore London in the summer
If you think you are already quite good at English, then bring your curiosity to explore the beauty of London.
2) Focus on your studies
If you think you are not very good at English (same as me), focus more on your English studies, but try to squeeze in some time to explore the city. The balance between life and study is very important!
3) Learn professional vocabulary
Try to learn the professional words in your discipline before you start your course. It will really help later on.
4) Read the Time Out magazine
Free Time Out is always your best friend in London, it has so much information regarding the events, activities and exhibitions happening in London every day.