Birmingham City University Reputation
As far as really good goes I would say there is no aspect of Birmingham City University that is really good other than the IT facilities, Library and the city center of Birmingham. Being at North Campus you are located in Perry Barr a rough area of Birmingham which is neither attractive or exciting with very limited things to do except from star city which is about a 10 minutes taxi ride or a 30 minute walk from the campus. There are very few recreational spaces such as parks etc. however the John Ellis sports centre located on campus is good and affordable with around 100 machines, weights training area and a number or different courts and pitches for the likes of football, field hockey, basketball, netball and badminton. Students are encouraged to join in extra-curricular activities at the start of the year with a number of events organised to allow students to join up to their favored activities. What I will say is good about the university is that the staff are very friendly and the learning facilities available are among the best I’ve ever used.
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What could be improved?
To put it simply everything. Although the staff at BCU are very friendly this does not mean they are good teachers and lecturers. I’ve found throughout my time at the university that around 95% of lecturers read directly from the board merely reiterating what can be seen on the board albeit in a more ambiguous manner. Unfortunately in one of my modules one of my lecturers tended to over complicate things to such an extent that within 6 weeks only around 20% of the students were turning up. Also as the university is very multi-cultural which don’t get me wrong is a great thing I often found it difficult to understand my lecturers due to their accents. The notes and research materials provided by the university are either direct copies of resources that can be found on various websites or they are either inaccurate or out-of-date, time and again students were finding errors within learning materials including coursework briefs which we were being graded upon. As for the accommodation available at North Campus there are a plentiful supply of rooms. My first year I was located in the Coppice accommodation suits although looking rather pleasant from the outside you soon came to understand that you can’t judge a book by its cover. We constantly had problems with our boiler and hot water and for 2 weeks we were without hot water despite reporting it. The accommodation manager Christine Bowers is less than helpful and very overbearing having very little time for the opinions of the students which she claims to support. All this can be evidenced by the fact that in the past 2 years BCU’s league table ranking has dropped by around 20 places with 2/5 students being dissatisfied by BCU. Overall I would say the University has incredible potential it is just very unfortunate that the facilities are not utilized to support the needs of the students. Despite all this I have enjoyed the experience of being at this university and hope that it does not deter any prospective students.