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American student applying to a UK college

  1. Dec 4, 2006 #1
    I made a thread about swtiching from computer engineering to physics. I have decided on nanotechnology. I found some degree programs in the UK. Like at the University College London and Imperial College. What are your opinions on this? :)
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 5, 2006 #2
    Well, depends on what exactly you wanna do. If you wanna focus on computational physics (eg DFT simulations for nanutubes) i assure you that Cambridge is the best. The lab of John Robertson is very famous. I have a guy sitting next to me that did his phd there.

  4. Dec 5, 2006 #3
    Q. I’m currently doing an Engineering course at another university. Is it possible to transfer into the Cambridge course?
    No, it is not possible to transfer into our course. The only point of entry is to the first year, unless you have obtained a Bachelors degree in a related subject, e.g. Physics, in which case you may qualify for Affiliated student status, which allows entry to the second year.
  5. Dec 5, 2006 #4


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    Are you asking if you can use the American credit system (or whatever it's called) to transfer midway into a course in Europe.

    If so, I would say no. You'll have to start the course at the beginning.

    I've only had one experience of a friend thinking she could jump the first year in the UK - she couldn't, got upset and returned to the US.

    However, I've also worked in Belgium and the Netherlands, and have never come across this kind of transfer - and don't think it would be encouraged.
  6. Dec 5, 2006 #5
    Correct, i live in Belgium.

    J77, where did you work in Belgium ?

  7. Dec 5, 2006 #6
    I was thinking after my freshman year... but I guess not?
  8. Dec 6, 2006 #7


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    KU Leuven - I'm sure I've mentioned it before :smile:
  9. Dec 6, 2006 #8
    Great, i am working there as well.

  10. Dec 6, 2006 #9
    i went to university college london, and had an interview at imperial, i studied mathematics so i can't speak about the nature of the courses you are interested in, however one thing you might like to consider is the different nature of the colleges.

    both have an excellent and roughly equal reputation. in the top 5 in britain, top 30 in the world, however imperial is a science and engineering only school, whereas ucl is your typical british university that teaches and researches pretty much everything. this has an effect on the culture of the places (for instance gender ratios)

    for subject, especially one as specialised as nanotech, i'd look at the research reputation and interests of the department, even though this might not affect an undergraduate course so much. research is assessed independently and given a rating by the research assessment exercise (RAE) the score running from (lowest) 1, 2, 3b, 3a, 4, 5, 5 star (highest). ucl and imperial will almost certainly be either 5 or 5 star. the departments will no doubt tell you their rating, if it's not published in the prospectus. it might be here, on the rae's site

    hope this helps
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