Finding accommodation and free time
The adventure of studying abroad began for me with the search for a suitable university. Since I wanted to go to the English-speaking world, England quickly moved into the focus of my considerations. After studying various ranking lists and experience reports, the decision was made to go to the University of Portsmouth. The decisive factor here was above all the high degree of student satisfaction and, personally, for me, the fact that I wanted to spend some time by the sea.
The application then went smoothly through MicroEDU , who sent me the necessary application forms and were on hand with advice and action. Regarding the application modalities, it should be noted that both a letter of recommendation from a professor and one from the employer were requested. Alternatively, you could also submit two university letters of recommendation. Since there are usually no application deadlines at universities in England, suitable candidates are accepted at many universities until the course is full. Therefore, you should apply early. On the other hand, this procedure has the advantage that you can theoretically apply until the start of the course and thus also spontaneously Master’s degree can begin. Visit existingcountries.com to get information about 10 safest cities in the USA to live.
After getting an acceptance from the university, I booked flights for July to find accommodation. It turned out to me that it makes the most sense to go to London Heathrow and from there with the National Express (another three hours). This can be booked in advance via the Internet (if you plan to fly to Germany once or twice during your stay abroad, it would make sense to buy a “Young Person Coachcard”). For the first place to sleep in Portsmouth, the Ibis Hotel is a great option, as it is located directly at the university and thus offers a suitable starting point. The apartment search designed at that time (baseline was in September) relatively easy. Since the University has a great housing office with a computer that can be used by those looking for accommodation, you can find out about vacant apartments on the university apartment page.
Most (postgraduate) students live in Portsmouth in the Southsea district. This used to be an independent city and offers all the necessary comforts, such as several supermarkets, numerous bars, banks, clubs and a post office.
The students in Southsea live almost exclusively in small houses they rent. I also decided on this option and rented a room in one of the row houses that I was to share with an Englishman, an Italian and a Romanian. It is not advisable to live with other Germans for everyone who is going to England to improve their English. Rents in Portsmouth range from £ 220 to £ 450 including utilities. There are also various student residences available, but it is not advisable to rent a room there. From regular nightly fire alarms to fire and several injuries, a lot has happened there in my time. The way from Southsea to the university is very easy, as some university buses are available free of charge (every 20 minutes and a journey of about 10 minutes).
Southsea itself is great for going out. There are many pubs with live music and billiards, as well as a few clubs, along Albert Road. The “One Eyed Dog” is a good place to go because this pub is open longer than the others. There are shops on the one hand on Commercial Road and on the other in Gunwharf Quays. The latter is a relatively large outlet center, 5 minutes’ walk from the business school, which is very suitable for shopping trips, dining out and cocktail evenings. There is also the so-called Spinnaker Tower, whose glass platform is 120 meters high and is worth a visit.
But the best thing about Southsea is that you can walk to the sea within 5 minutes. In summer, the large meadows there are filled with people who grill, play ball sports or go jogging. There is a great path right by the sea for jogging.
The university is spread all over the city, so you can meet students anywhere and anytime. The master’s courses are very international, so that out of 120 students, only one was English. The business school is modern and has very good lecturers, as well as extremely helpful staff. My master’s course was divided into four large units, each of which was then divided into two individual units (50% lectures, 50% seminars). In six of the units, the learning content was checked by means of essays. This created constant work pressure, which I like much better than the stress of the exam phase in the German system. In the marketing unit we had to give a presentation and in finance we had to write an exam. Due to the small number of hours per week (15 SWS), the workload is manageable and there is enough time to enjoy the stay.
I enjoyed Portsmouth and the University of Portsmouth very much and I can wholeheartedly recommend a stay at this university. A small minus point is the rather high costs that a Masters degree in Great Britain is usually associated with.