There are many unique aspects of university life in Scotland which attracted me when I was choosing where to study; I am studying English at a top Scottish university in Edinburgh. During high school, I was conflicted between studying English or Classics at a higher level, enjoying both. Which is why, when I found out about the elective system in Scotland, I was very compelled towards studying there.

At Scottish universities during your first two years, you are able to do electives (unless you are studying Medicine). Electives can be any other subjects, with my university offering a wide range such as languages, fashion, maths, etc. This grants the students freedom to explore old or new academic interests; it is similar to the American university system which the majority of English universities do not offer (except perhaps if you are one of the few to study ‘Liberal Arts’). In your final two years, you focus on your degree subject and explore it with more depth.

This brings me to the next attraction of Scottish universities: a four year course. I personally found that a longer course appealed as it allows for there to be much more freedom within those years. For example, the first two years do not count towards your final results at the end of University, giving time to ease into student life and a manageable workload. Many other UK universities require second years to submit coursework/perform exams.

Student accommodation is the first part of student life you will encounter. There are many different types of student accommodations to choose based on your individual preference: catered, non-catered, single rooms, flats, central, outskirts of town, etc.  Whatever you choose, you are guaranteed to meet many people from all over the world. At the beginning of university, you are given a week without academics, titled ‘freshers week’, where you can settle into your new home, go out and meet people.

Life outside of academics is fun and vibrant. If you are not from the UK, you will also soon be exposed to the beauty of British pubs! Edinburgh in particular also has delicious food, both cheaper student restaurants as well as elegant ones for special occasions. The weekends, weirdly, are relaxed and students seem to be more prone to going out clubbing on weekdays, but you quickly become adjusted to this. Overall, studying at a Scottish university can appeal to anyone, whether you are keen to study multiple things, focus on your specific subject, study in a relaxed manner, or be more work-oriented. It has it all.

By Mia Yaffes
Student Contributor