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Our students say

Our students say

When you choose to study Mathematics at Royal Holloway you join a friendly and inclusive community, where students are encouraged to explore and enjoy mathematics in a really supportive environment. We aim to inspire you with the beauty and usefulness of maths, and help every student prepare themselves effectively for their future career.

You can hear directly from some of our students about their experiences of Mathematics at Royal Holloway below:

Samantha, Undergraduate Maths student

Why did you choose to study Maths at Royal Holloway?

The Mathematics department here at Royal Holloway really stood out to me because of the excellent range of modules that the degrees have to offer; from pure to applied mathematics and statistical modules which include computer programming skills. Compared to other Universities that I visited; this department offered the most help especially in first year when you are adjusting to degree level.

What makes your course interesting?

What makes my course interesting is having multiple different methods of learning the content, which makes it more enjoyable to study and helps with motivation. For example, you have tutorials in small groups of about 5 or 6, timetabled homework sessions which are smaller and less structured than lectures and there are also office hours to see your lecturers one on one.

 

What do you enjoy the most about your course?

The thing that I enjoy the most about my course is how diverse the modules are and the amount of choice you are given in second and third year. Due to the wide range of modules on offer, I was able to take one module studying scientific programming and another module which is entirely different, namely Graphs and Optimisation. 

 

How does the department prepare you for your chosen career?

Being an indecisive individual, it’s hard to know what career path to choose for myself but the Maths department really helped me by including a careers section within one of my modules which included CV skills, interview skills and how to give a mini speech without exceeding a certain time frame.

 

What advice would you give to anyone wanting to study Mathematics at Royal Holloway?

My advice to anyone wanting to study Mathematics at Royal Holloway would be to make sure you keep on top of the workload in the first year and attend extra homework sessions so that you fully understand the topics covered in lectures. Try to engage with as many students on your course as possible since maths can be quite challenging at times and involves more independent study compared to other subjects, so it is helpful to work with peers in the library. Most importantly, enjoy it!

 

Andrew, Undergraduate Maths Student

Why did you choose to study Mathematics at Royal Holloway?

Studying mathematics was something that I wanted to do from a really young age.  When people around me were saying that maths was really hard – or even really boring – I found it fascinating.  I loved seeing the patterns in numbers and how these could help to solve real life problems. The fact that Royal Holloway is a research-led institution was important to me.  Lecturers can draw on their research when they are teaching us, which not only makes the subjects we are learning interesting – but gives us up-to-date information to work with, making everything that much more relevant.

On top of this, I just love the atmosphere and facilities at Royal Holloway. Growing up close to Birmingham, I wanted to study somewhere that was different to home, and while it might sound a bit of a cliché, I find our campus an inspiring place.  To be able to study while looking at the Founder's building is a privilege.

 

What makes your course interesting?

We aren’t just taught how to use mathematics, but also how and why the rules work in the way that they do. We get to look back and see how the original mathematicians learnt and proved the practices that we use and take for granted now. I also love the beauty of mathematics and the patterns that pop up are just so amazing. Every day on my course is different because I get to solve a new problem.  I won’t pretend it’s easy, but it’s a great feeling when I find the answer!

 

What do you enjoy the most about your course?

I most enjoy studying applied mathematics. I think it probably goes back to when I was young and that first realisation that maths has an important place in the real world. For example, this year I studied a module called vector calculus and learnt how fluids move through space, and how they will flow. I found this so interesting, and it was great to see how the mathematical skills that you would just use arbitrarily in A-levels, such as integration and differentiation, can be applied to help out in real life.

 

How does the department prepare you for your chosen career?

The department has helped out so much with preparing me for life after university. Throughout this year, we had weekly lectures on employability skills, such as how to write a good CV and cover letter. We even had a chance to have a mock interview with our personal advisors for a job in an area that we are interested in. Furthermore, we have had people from different industries give us weekly presentations, on careers that we could consider with a maths degree. For example, I never realised that you could have a job in VFX in films with a maths degree! It has really opened so many doors and given me so many options for the future.

What advice would you give to anyone wanting to study Mathematics at Royal Holloway?

My advice would be to be prepared to work hard. In my experience I found that, especially with maths, an element of natural skill could help with your GCSEs and A-Levels, whereas at university it requires a lot of hard work and self-motivation too.  And I also think that you have to have a passion for the subject too.  You’ll be studying it for quite a while, and the more enthusiasm you can put into your studies, the more you’ll get out! Having said that, the department does a really great job of introducing students to university life and helping you strike a good work-life balance, so the support is always there if you ask.

Brett, Mathematics undergraduate student

Why did you choose to study at Royal Holloway? 

One of the main reasons I chose Royal Holloway is because while studying for my A-Levels, my maths teacher told me about his degree and time at the university. In addition, on the open day touring around campus was great, the old buildings and campus environment was very welcoming. 

 

What makes your course interesting? 

One of the main things I find very interesting, particularly on the mathematics branch of the course was that I learnt more in depth about the concepts I learnt at A-Level, learning why things work as they do and the key proofs for them. In addition to this, in the computer science course I have been introduced to key fundamental concepts and given a greater understanding of the key ideas I knew. 

 

What do you enjoy most about your course? 

The thing I enjoy most is being able to always contact the professors, and having access to the notes and information quickly, as well as the sense of community when you have an issue with answering something, you can get help from classmates as well as older students and professors.

 

How does the department prepare you for your chosen career? 

The university has lots of options for industrial placements and summer internships, and a team dedicated to supporting students which I used in order to work through my CV to write it so that it is appropriate for the kinds of jobs I want.

 

What advice would you give to anyone wanting to study Mathematics at Royal Holloway?

Try to keep ahead on work, but set some time aside to do what you enjoy, take part in as many societies as possible and ask for help if you need it. Double check your notes after a lecture actually make sense to you, if they don't, check through the information and re-write parts. Don't worry about crossing out work and starting again sometimes that's better than trying to fix it, you may find a better solution. If you can explain your notes to someone who doesn't know the subject in a way they understand, it may also help you to understand it. 

Why did you choose to study Mathematics at Royal Holloway?

I didn't originally plan to study Maths, and when I did it's because I realised I truly enjoyed it, even when it was difficult. I chose Royal Holloway because of its high student satisfaction and the area it was in. I wanted to enjoy the entire university experience, university isn't entirely about the academia.

 

What makes your course interesting?

The variety within my course keeps it interesting, there are so many things that you can describe mathematically that I never considered before - for example, knot theory. It included elements of A-level maths but it's on a whole other level.

 

What do you enjoy the most about your course?

I enjoy the challenge it brings. Maths is hard and it gets a bit painful but nothing can beat the satisfaction you feel when you begin to understand it. Also it's quite beautiful when you are working on a question/proof and you see it all come together.

 

How does the department prepare you for your chosen career?

Not only does this course start off with a broader range of maths that you whittle down to what you want to focus in on, it also provides a lot of opportunities to make you more employable. An example would be the Python Programming course you take in 2nd year. Many employers look for programming experience, so it's a handy course to take.

 

What advice would you give to anyone wanting to study Mathematics at Royal Holloway?

As long as you do the work assigned you will be fine. Go to the lectures, do all of the weekly assignments and take advantage of the office hours/any other help offered. But also make friends on your course. Not only can you work with each other, it also makes the whole experience more enjoyable!

Why did you choose to study at Royal Holloway?

I chose Mathematics as my degree at university because I believe it is the fundamental of nearly everything. I love the subject and have a passion to explore many unknowns. It is important to me to pursue my interests and enjoy what I am learning.  Studying Mathematics provides me with a variety of choices in the future, in both further study and in my career. I chose Royal Holloway because I liked the course structure and course choices provided by the department. The department has given me opportunities to achieve what I want in a really friendly study environment. I believe I will reach my goal with Royal Holloway’s Mathematics department.

 

What makes your course interesting?

The combination of quizzes, worksheets, workshops and exams has provided me with lots of learning opportunities, solving different types of questions and studying problem solving strategies. Studying Python and R in second year equipped me with more skills other than Mathematics. The career talks within the scientific programming course were really beneficial to me, and gave me lots of ideas about my future path and gaining more skills which are useful in society. If you enjoy Maths and want to study Maths as your degree, trust me, Royal Holloway Maths department will not disappoint you.

 

What do you enjoy the most about your course?

I have enjoyed many things on my course and I have enjoyed the learning environment within the Mathematics department, everyone is friendly and lecturers are willing to help if you ask. The most enjoyable thing to me is going to lectures. These are opportunities to learn and ask in front of the lecturer, solving problems together. Especially in the past year, under COVID-19, lecturers are trying their best to present what we are learning online. They made the course less stressful under such a difficult time and have equipped me with useful skills, which are helpful after University.

How does the department prepare you for your chosen career?

I had several career talks from different areas in my second year. The department offered an assessment on my CV and cover letter, really helpful for applying for jobs after graduation.  The department also provides Summer placements both within the department and in many major companies. This is our opportunity to make our CV even better, giving us an opportunity to learn outside the college. Your tutor in the department will always give you the best advice, guide you through university life and support you in your studies. Also, the department provides lots of online resources at the college digital library, which we can access anytime everywhere.

 

What advice would you give to anyone wanting to study Mathematics at Royal Holloway?

If you enjoy Maths and want to have variety of choices in your studies, I believe Royal Holloway will suit you well. At Royal Holloway, you have no worries, the Mathematics department will support you the whole way through with study, equip you with many useful skills and offer you opportunities. But be organised, have a faith in yourself, come to university with a clear aim. Trust me, with all the help you can get, you will achieve your goals.

 

Why did you choose to study your degree at Royal Holloway?

There are only a few universities that offer the possibility to study both mathematics and philosophy at the same time, and Royal Holloway is one of them. I was afraid that doing a degree with two subjects would results in an incomplete knowledge of each subject. However, after looking at the modules that the department was offering, I was relieved in seeing that they were covering all the content I wanted to study.

 

What makes your course interesting?

I really enjoy the variety of modules the course is offering. Apart from the standard modules such as complex analysis and calculus there are a few interesting and unique modules such as financial maths and cryptography that you can take if you want to investigate a specific side of mathematics.

 

What do you enjoy the most about your course?

Apart from the interest I have in the subject itself, I also enjoy how the lectures are carried out by each professor. I especially enjoy the opportunity the course gives me to work with other students during the group work sessions that we attend each week.

In additional to the lectures that we attend, we have one group work session every week where we can solve assignments alongside other students. The professors offer drop-in hours where you can meet them to discuss any inquiry. We also have one set of quizzes and one problem sheet per week. If there is a need to further explore a module there is always a reading list suggested by the professor to expand our understanding.

 

What advice would you give to anyone wanting to study the same degree at Royal Holloway?

Never be afraid to ask for help! I believe engaging with other people is fundamental. If you find yourself struggling with any module there is always an opportunity to ask a fellow student or a peer student for help. 

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