Category Archives: Student Experience

Mature students: Why there’s NO NEED TO PANIC on your way to university… By Devon Motte (class of 2017)

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For anyone who is toying with the idea of heading back to university, the idea of combatting a cavalcade of fresh young faces just off the ‘A level’ belt can sound daunting and ill prepared. However, lucky for mature students, there is something called Go Higher!

I found Go Higher when I was looking for a solution to my entrance into main university problem. I didn’t know where to start, nor did I know what I would be getting myself into. Especially with the gap between school, studying, and the organised life of a student. I wasn’t sure if I had enough credits and I panicked at the thought of transitioning from the life I had to the life of a student. But when I called up, I was met with a team of organised and reassuring people.

Reflections on Go Higher by Lauren (class of 2017)

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I was really lucky to get onto Go Higher because I only found out about its existence within a few days of the application closing date. I had applied for another Access to Higher Education course and was dreading the childcare implications (I’m a single mother) since it ran over three days. Go Higher, however, is one full day a week and much more manageable, and I’ve had time to organize childcare for when I start my degree full-time in September. To be honest, I couldn’t believe my luck at having discovered Go Higher for another reason –

A Go Higher Student’s Personal Story by Dominic Henry

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I’ll start with some information about me. In school I made the same cocky mistakes a lot of teens do; i.e. I decided there was no point going to school because, well, what could they possibly teach me that I didn’t already know? So, I spent all of 3 hours a day there before deciding that that was enough. As you can imagine my exams didn’t go great, in fact I failed them all. But that was okay as I started working in a hairdresser’s a week after I finished school and was going to college to train as a stylist. I did this and qualified as planned – but that’s when life hit me full time.

A personal story by Graham Moran…

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After leaving my degree studies at 18 years old, feeling like I never wanted to return to any form of higher education ever again, I felt wrung out, tired and wanted to explore the other side of the pavement. As the years passed, I felt a sense of disappointment at myself for not pursuing education further. I had always enjoyed it, at school and at A-Level, and aged 31, felt the time was right for me to take action and stop pondering ‘what if?’ After hitting the proverbial glass ceiling working within hospitality, I made the decision to apply for Go Higher at the University of Liverpool in the summer of 2015 with the aim of furthering myself academically. 

Twelve months later – by Lisa Hopkins, class of 2016

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Twelve months ago I was lost. Having left school at 15 I had no GCSEs, I found myself turned away from many institutions and possible career paths because of this. As taking GCSEs as an over 25 is no longer funded I was caught between a proverbial rock and a hard place. I had almost begun to believe that this was my lot in life… But then I found Go Higher, an Access to the Humanities course at the University of Liverpool. What’s more, my lack of qualifications did not exclude me from entry.

The student view, half way through…. By Danial Latu

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For a number of years I had been wanting to return to formal learning as things did not go to plan the first time round when I was in high school. I left at the age of 13 as a result I carry no traditional qualifications apart from life experience.  I started to search the internet to see how I could better myself knowing that enhancing my education was the way forward for me.

Throughout my search I came across the Go Higher programme on the University of Liverpool website and it stated, “No traditional qualifications needed.” I knew within that I had found what I had been looking for yet I still held fear within me as I had been out of education for over 20 years.

How to discover what you like to study – and what you don’t….

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Mature students returning to education after a long time out are often undecided as to what they may want to study as an undergraduate. This is true of many of our Go Higher Diploma students embarking on the part-time, one-year access programme here at the University of Liverpool. Others come to us with firm ideas of where they want to go next and stick to their initial aims throughout. There are always students, however, who begin the Go Higher Diploma firm ideas of their undergraduate pathway but then change their minds, sometimes quite dramatically

Taking the scenic route to Higher Education by Alex Carabine

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I never thought I would attend university.  I had so many failed attempts at higher education behind me that I was convinced I wasn’t smart enough, brave enough or good enough to be able to get through A levels, let alone onto an access course or even – heaven help me! – a degree.

I’m not sure how I worked up the courage to apply for Go Higher; I remember holding my breath and closing my eyes when I clicked “send” on my online application.

Versed in Go Higher by Paul Smith

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Wednesday was the last teaching day of Go Higher and most of our brilliant students are getting ready to begin their undergraduate degrees in September (after the small issue of getting their assessed assignments in later this month).
We celebrated in lots of ways, and this is a verse penned in response to Go Higher by our very own Paul Smith, who is going on to study arts subjects and achieve great things at Liverpool University and who is pictured here with his son George.

What do you have to do to get a place on Go Higher? By Claire Jones

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This time of year is always interesting for the tutors on Go Higher as it is when we get to meet the people who may become our students next year. Applications are at their busiest now, as offers of places are made by the end of July and we begin the new academic year at the start of September.

This last few weeks I have got to meet people from  many different backgrounds and ages, all with unique stories as to why they want to do Go Higher, most with a view to starting an undergraduate degree programme in September 2016. This is not the only reason people apply to us however and some students join us undecided as to what  they want to do next after completing the course. They come to Go Higher to widen their options, experience being a part-time student and to have a second chance at higher education.