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I am about to go back to Warwick for my 4th and final year at the place, after spending a year working in Brussels as part of my Politics with French course, and to be honest I can't wait! Obviously this opinion will be influenced by the fact that, knowing my luck, the Vice Chancellor will turn out to be a Ciao member who scours the opinions on Universities for any anti-Warwick material, but fortunately there's not really anything bad to mention.
To get onto the courses at Warwick there is always pretty stiff competition, but that does mean that once you get there, everyone shares an interest in your subject and you can be sure of some interesting seminars. After choosing Politics, I always thought that there was the risk of ending up with a bunch of boring old farts taking lectures and schoolmaster-like tutors taking seminars. But, with the odd exception, this was not the case. Most of the tutors are actually Phd students, to whom you can relate and vice versa. Seminars have a relaxed feel which actually stimulates your interest and prompts you to participate more fully than you perhaps would otherwise
do. Studying French also gives me an insight into the language departments, which are similarly run by young tutors who are often native speakers of your studied language. Warwick also gives every student the opportunity to study a wide variety of foreign languages at its revered language school. On the whole, therefore, I would give the departments and courses the thumbs-up, although they can sometimes be rather disorganised from an admin perspective.
But enough about studying. What about the real important stuff?!
To put it simply, Warwick is rightly considered one of, if not, the best uni in the country from a social, as well as academic, perspective. It has the largest Students' Union in the country, in which there are several bars and fast food outlets, several pool and snooker rooms, an area for live bands, and a great club area. Every night of the week has a regular Union event based around a different music genre, which are always popular. Alcohol is cheap too - though not as cheap as most universities (about £1.50 a pint) - but in any case, all profits are pumped back into the Union, ensuring that it can consistently provide an excellent venue for entertainments.
Entertainments at Warwick are not limited to the Union alone. The Warwick Arts Centre, merely yards away from the Union, has a cinema, as well as several theatres and restaurants. This Centre is very popular with the local community, and you will often find some pretty big-name performers there. Warwick is also renowned for its vast array of clubs and societies which cater for every interest imaginable. The most popular - the Cinema Society - shows recent releases in a theatre catering for several hundred people every night, for a cheap price. There is also an extensive choice of sports clubs and a top-class sports centre which is FREE to all students!
What more can I say? There is also a great choice of off-campus entertainment, with Coventry only a 10-minute bus ride away and Leamington Spa - which is particularly good for pub crawls - also close by.
Warwick also has a great choice of on-campus accommodation to choose from. Prices and rental periods vary widely, allowing for maximum student choice as to where they live. I won't tell you the best place to go because everyone just says the residence they stayed in anyway! In the 2nd year, you have to club together with some mates to find a place to live in either Leamington (good for pubs/mixture of houses available), Coventry (bit rough I think) or Kenilworth (nicest of the 3 but less easy to reach - despite being the closest!). This can be a good laugh, and the uni help you to find somewhere, unless you choose to go private. In the final year, most people try to get on-campus, but there is a limit to the number of places available. So, places get allotted via a kind of lottery. Those who lose, must go through the process of finding somewhere off-campus again, which can be a bit of a pain I guess. Students returning from abroad (like me) are guaranteed on-campus accommodation.
I think that's about it. I will leave you with this piece of advice: If you are considering where to study - be it as an undergraduate or postgraduate - I would strongly recommend Warwick. Indeed, friends of mine who have visited from at least 6 different unis have all commented "I wish that I'd come here."