Calum’s study schedule: MA (Hons) Politics | The University of Edinburgh

Calum’s study schedule: MA (Hons) Politics | The University of Edinburgh

November 7, 2019 0 By Stanley Isaacs


My name is Calum Macdonald, I’m from Inverness
and I’ve just finished my third year studying Politics.
So, my typical week is made up of six classes, three lectures and three tutorials. You’re
expected outwith those classes to be learning yourself. It’s not the same as school where
you rock up between 9 o’clock and 5 o’clock and everything is sort of fed to you. You
are expected to go away and to be informed and to educate yourself on a lot of the things
that you’re trying to learn. You’re expected to do a lot of your work outwith the contact
time where you’ll be with the expert, with the lecturer, with the tutor: you’re expected
to do a lot outwith that. Whether that’s reading, just so that you’re informed and
that you have knowledge of what it is you’re being asked to look at, or perhaps it could
even be in preparation as well for things like group presentations which are quite a
common method of learning and delivery in tutorials.
Tutorials are a bit more student centred I guess you could say, so it will be led by
again a tutor, so that could be a lecturer from the course or perhaps a PhD student who
is looking at that particular subject in a great amount of detail. You’ll be gathered
with 10 to 15 of your fellow students and you’ll be expected to have done more reading,
to build on what you’ve done in the lecture and then to sit and discuss with your fellow
students the topic. Generally there’s set questions that you’re expected to be answering
around as well. Tutorials are always advocated as the place
where most of the learning is done and I think that’s because everybody shows up with a
different point of view. It’s not one person standing at the front delivering the information,
it’s 15 people who have gone away, thought about it, and come back to deliver what they
think of the topic that’s being discussed. I think they’re perhaps the most enjoyable
as well because it’s somewhere where you can actively engage with everybody who’s
in the room and pass on what you’ve learnt and pick up from others what they’ve been
learning as well.