Bradley from the UK
How did you decide to study at Lund University?
"Initially, I searched for the top 100 universities globally. Then I went through the list, and there were some places that I didn’t want to go to and there were some that I did. I had studied in Sweden before for a semester. I like the teaching style and how the school system works here, so it seemed to be a good idea. The Lund programme stood out as a good next step for me personally."
What do you think about the teaching style here?
"In the programme, there is not a lot of pressure. For example, there was a module with a lot of computer lab work. The teachers really encourage you to talk to each other in the class, so if you are stuck on a problem then someone else is probably stuck on the same problem and you can learn together. Here in Sweden, modules are usually done one after another whereas in England, where I am from, you do three modules at the same time and they all have work at the same time."
How international is the classroom?
"The class has been very international. We have had a few Swedish students, but the vast majority are international students."
What is the coursework like in the programme?
"It has varied from module to module. There is a balance between some fieldwork in some modules, sometimes we have lectures, and then sometimes we have a lot of lab work. Personally, I have grown to like the lab work because we have quite full days from around 10:00 to 17:00, but then once you are done. You don’t have to worry about doing any work at home, and you can leave it behind until the next day. I quite like that because you have free time in the evening, when you don’t need to worry about reading for the next lecture. There have also been quite a few modules with computer work where we’ve been learning some coding. It varies and there is some flexibility in what modules you want to choose. At the moment, instead of taking one of the models the course recommended, I am doing an internship with one of my professors in the department. I’ve been learning a lot of laboratory skills that I didn't know before, and I have been enjoying it. I’ve been able to sit in group meetings with PhD lectures, it has been more fulfilling than doing a regular module because I feel like I am working. I don’t have to worry about an exam, but I feel good doing these lab tasks."
What does the work-life balance in Sweden look like?
"Here in Sweden, they understand that students are not machines. There is only so much that we can do. I think that they really prioritise that we need our downtime. I think, compared to England, the balance is less stressful. There are of course some stressful days here. For example, I had to do some intense course exercises, but once you solve the problem that you are stuck on it feels really good. It feels like you learned something and that you’ve progressed. When you work in a group, it feels great to complete the work together. We figured it out."
How much group work is there in the programme?
"There is actually a lot of group work. I think they want to prepare us for a time after university when we will most likely need to work in a team. Most of the time, they are very lenient on who you can work with. Once you have people you are comfortable working with, they let you work with the same people. But that varies from course to course. It motivates you to work harder."
What are you planning on doing after you graduate?
"Well, I am thinking of applying for a PhD or a lab technician position. At the moment, I emailed a few different lecturers who I saw received project funding and one of them was interested in having me work with them. The plan is to try and get a PhD so I can stay here. I like living in Sweden and I would be happy to stay. I feel like doing my Master’s here has actually made me like researching more. Before I came here, the PhD thing was floating in the air. Now that I have been doing my studies here, I think I have more passion for a PhD."
What is your advice to someone considering this programme?
"If you are really interested, it’s a nice programme and you should go for it. It’s very rewarding and it’s not super difficult. You will have difficult days and difficult exercises, but once you get through it, it feels good. You will learn a lot of skills and we use different programs, models and software. I think choosing this programme is a good idea if you are interested in the subject."
Want to know more about Bradley's thoughts on the programme content? Check out his blog post: