During the summer of 2015, I spent 6 weeks in Aberystwyth University as a student of the Summer University Programme. For six whole weeks during the summer, I lived as a student in student accommodation and attending lectures of varying intensity to then sit and examination lesson at the end of the course. The six weeks was split up into 3 periods of two weeks. I would sit a course of my choice and core skills and they would change every two weeks. Altogether, I sat 6 modules with university standard assessments.
The first two weeks of the holiday, I studied Core Skills one, which required me to write an essay of 1000 words about the influence of popular music on Western culture. I decided to do mine on Punk as it was a very influential part of the late 20th century and the first few years of the 21st century, although less influential during the latter. I also studied a subject of my choice, which was Psychology, in which was studied about Social Psychologist and, of course, the Stanford Prison Experiment. We also looked at the Robber’s Cave experiment which saw two groups of teenage boys on a camping trip. Neither of the groups knew about the other group, and after a week of activities, the two groups were brought together. The aim was to study hostility between groups. At the end of the two weeks, we had to write an essay of 1500 words on a question we were given, so I decided to Critically Evaluate the Behavioural Approach, along with a power point presentation highlighting a topic that we feel strongly about. My presentation was on how Social Media has led to a decrease of literacy rates across England and Wales. To results were shocking. I finished the first two weeks with a 2,2 in core skills and Psychology.
The second two weeks followed a similar format to the first part of the summer. I sat through 2 hours of core skills in the morning, researching and writing a 800 word essay on the question “To learn in Welsh is a privilege! Discuss”. Many people had strong views on this subject, myself included. I decided to take a historical approach to answering this question. My second choice subject was Drama. I quite enjoyed drama and the lecturer’s name was Ritz. However, he was also a philosophy teacher so the majority of the lessons were very philosophical based, including the scripted piece we studied; Waiting for Godot. Despite this, I very much enjoyed reading the play. For the assessment at the end of the middle two weeks, we had to perform a play of our stories that we had written and hand in a journal we had been keeping of the two weeks we were in Drama. This time, I received a 2,2 for core skills but a 2,1 in Drama.
The final two weeks, the core skills essay was about a question our team devised with an accompanying presentation. My team decided to do our assignment on “The Increase OF Global Communications has brought the human race together.” Discuss!
I found this essay and research to be very interesting and I enjoyed working as part of team to come up with a final product that we were all very happy with. I am still waiting on the results of this block at this time, but I am sure I have done well. My final chosen subject was Law. I was very excited about this as I aim to become a Homicide detective. I have now decided that I am going to study Criminal Law in Aberystwyth when I leave school and this programme has helped me decide.
But it wasn’t all work. The leaders of the programme put on a range of activities every night for us, making this experience not only an educational one, but a social one as well. I have made many friends that I will keep in contact with. This was a once in a lifetime experience and if any of you get the opportunity to do this, I would highly recommend it. At the end of the summer, there was a graduation ceremony where we received certificates and have been told that we have an offer of EE to get into Aberystwyth University which has helped me out a lot.
Lauren Pickens – year 13