How much free time as a final year Bsc undergrad?

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robininthewind
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How much free time as a final year Bsc undergrad?

Post by robininthewind » Tue Jun 30, 2020 3:52 pm

Hi there,

I am thinking about doing some additional research assistant work during the final year of my Bsc Psychology degree. I am wondering what other people's experiences were of their final year, in terms of how much free time they had. I had a very busy second year with a lot of deadlines, so I am cautious about overloading myself next year.

Thank you!

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CatFace
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Re: How much free time as a final year Bsc undergrad?

Post by CatFace » Tue Jun 30, 2020 3:58 pm

This seems to vary wildly from university to university. For instance, in the final year of my undergrad we had several days a week for "independent study", with very little requirement to be in lectures (and so I had a customer service job for 15 weekday hours, an infrequent RA voluntary role, and still had time to do my uni work to a high 2:1 standard - not a brag, it wasn't too tricky). But friends in other universities had requirements to be in every day, and so would absolutely not have been able to do a job alongside the course. Do you know people in your final year of your university that you could speak to?

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Geishawife
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Re: How much free time as a final year Bsc undergrad?

Post by Geishawife » Tue Jun 30, 2020 4:03 pm

I don't think it's possible to generalise. My final year was fiendishly busy with my research project taking up a LOT of time. Other people's experiences might be different. But I really would caution against taking on anything that could interfere with your studies and risk a lower grade as a result. I would recommend you don't do anything extra and focus all your energies on getting the best grade in your degree. A high 2:1 or a 1st will open far more doors than a lower grade plus some research. Good luck.

robininthewind
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Re: How much free time as a final year Bsc undergrad?

Post by robininthewind » Tue Jun 30, 2020 4:10 pm

CatFace wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 3:58 pm
This seems to vary wildly from university to university. For instance, in the final year of my undergrad we had several days a week for "independent study", with very little requirement to be in lectures (and so I had a customer service job for 15 weekday hours, an infrequent RA voluntary role, and still had time to do my uni work to a high 2:1 standard - not a brag, it wasn't too tricky). But friends in other universities had requirements to be in every day, and so would absolutely not have been able to do a job alongside the course. Do you know people in your final year of your university that you could speak to?
Hi CatFace,

Thanks for your reply :)
I know you're not bragging but that does seem impressive!

For my university and the particular modules I've chosen in final year, I think there is little requirement to be in attendance. I'll also be living 15 minutes walk from uni which is an immense help. My concern isn't so much with needing to attend lectures (I rarely did this in 2nd year either as I found them to be superfluous), just with deadlines and exams.

It's a good point about it varying from uni to uni. I will try and get in touch with some of the recent grads.
Geishawife wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 4:03 pm
I don't think it's possible to generalise. My final year was fiendishly busy with my research project taking up a LOT of time. Other people's experiences might be different. But I really would caution against taking on anything that could interfere with your studies and risk a lower grade as a result. I would recommend you don't do anything extra and focus all your energies on getting the best grade in your degree. A high 2:1 or a 1st will open far more doors than a lower grade plus some research. Good luck.
That's good advice Geishawife. I remember posting last summer with a similar question about my final year (though that was very hypothetical and now I actually have a decision to make), and I received the same advice that grades > extra work. While I agree with you that grades should be more important than additional work, I think in my particular circumstance I might be able to get away with fulfilling both, for 2 main reasons.

Firstly, due to the whole lockdown thing, my placement has moved to remote working which has given me a lot more time and I've managed to make decent progress on my dissertation. When my final year starts, I aim to have my Introduction and Methods finalised and have a good grasp of my Results. I'm not sure how far this puts me ahead of the curve but it does give me confidence in freeing up some time.

Secondly, honestly I found in 2nd year that the grades I got did not correlate with the effort I put into my work. Clearly this is not scientific at all but I suspect that after a certain amount of work, there are serious diminishing returns in terms of spending time polishing essays. This perhaps speaks to a less academically matured mindset of mine but I do feel a lot of my work in 2nd year was excessive or unnecessary.

Of course with this being said, I am still mindful and cautious of doing too much additional work, so I'm hoping to lay out clearly to my dissertation supervisor my work hours.

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maven
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Re: How much free time as a final year Bsc undergrad?

Post by maven » Thu Jul 02, 2020 3:10 pm

robininthewind wrote:
Tue Jun 30, 2020 4:10 pm
For my university and the particular modules I've chosen in final year, I think there is little requirement to be in attendance. I'll also be living 15 minutes walk from uni which is an immense help. My concern isn't so much with needing to attend lectures (I rarely did this in 2nd year either as I found them to be superfluous), just with deadlines and exams.
I'm genuinely bemused how you can do a degree and not think it worth attending lectures or going into the university. I get that with coronavirus more stuff is virtual, but you are literally saying that even when these were available you think lectures and tutorials are superfluous!
Maven.

Wise men talk because they have something to say, fools because they have to say something - Plato
The fool thinks himself to be wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool - Shakespeare

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