My experience – Speech and Language Therapy at City

Tag Archives: student life

When you’re not making money moves…

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gif of Cardi B saying "I make money moves."

University can be extremely taxing on your wallet, especially if you are moving out or have a lengthy commute. These financial demands are exacerbated when you are studying at a London based university, as London is not a ‘university town’ and many people flock to the capital city each year, so the demand on this geographically-minute area increases. In order to combat these financial woes, here are some of the things I do to save money at university:


  1. Travel

As I commute to university by bus I purchase a bus pass on my Student Oyster Card. The Student Oyster card saves 30% on adult-rate Travelcards and Bus & Tram Pass season tickets. I manage to save around £25 per month by buying a bus pass, instead of using pay as you go.

I have also combined my 16-25 Railcard with my Oyster card, which means I save 34% on pay as you go and off-peak train fares and daily caps. Other tips include travelling at off-peak times and avoiding zone 1 on the train. If you are doing a health-related course it may be possible to be reimbursed for travel costs on placement.


  1. Food

Food is definitely an area where savings can be made, from simply bringing a packed lunch to putting groceries in the freezer so food does not spoil quickly. I often purchase groceries from larger supermarkets instead of their smaller equivalents such as ‘Tesco Express’ where items of food are priced up.

Cooking your own food really helps, and when you’re in the mood for a take-away pizza just bung a frozen one in the oven. I admit I am not the finest of chefs, so I sometimes alternated cooking with my flatmate or split the costs of ingredients to avoid having spaghetti for 5 nights in a row.


  1. Mentality

A lot of restraint is needed when your overdraft and savings are just a tap away. I have been there holding a flask of coffee enviously staring at barista made lattes, or standing in the microwave queue to heat up my lunch when the aroma from the canteen seeps up my nose. To avoid spending too much, I try not to buy when I am hungry or leave my card at home and take cash.


There are countless things you can do to save money whilst at university, the key is to stick to your methods. What are some of the things you do to save money?

Here is an entire blog dedicated to finances and being a student:

Reflecting on BSc 3

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In the next academic year, I will be expected to write my dissertation project. That, in itself will truly test me, considering I have amended one sentence in this blog a mere 6 times. In order to embody this dissertation driven persona early on, I have decided to visit a local café to steal their wi-fi, write this post and find inspiration as I stare out the rain glazed windows. The next stage involves excessive latte drinking, furious typing and donning a cap to conceal the sleep deprivation and reported delirium.

Before I further tempt this dissertation related anxiety, I thought I would re-visit the high and lowlights of my third year at university.

In September, I begrudgingly walked off a plane bronzed from a holiday in Morocco with some of my university friends, then I found myself 12 hours later promoting the Speech and Language Therapy Society at the Freshers Fair.

As October was just around the corner, lectures re-commenced and I gradually fell back in to the routine of university. I purchased my monthly oyster card, started obsessing over the different ways I could prepare cous cous for lunch and reduced my leisurely morning routine to prioritise sleep.

I continued volunteering at Aphasia Re-connect throughout November, where I was involved with supporting conversations for people with Aphasia following a stroke. Aphasia can affect a person’s ability to understand speech, speak, read, write and use numbers and occurs after brain damage. Find out more information here:

December housed countless hours at my part-time retail job, exposing my cousin to the wonderful city of London and completing coursework due in the upcoming year. I celebrated my birthday then welcomed January 2019 with open arms and resolutions that I have shockingly adhered to!

Some of my presents

The Speech and Language Therapy Society tasks really kicked off in February, we started a series of lectures relating to Speech and Language Therapy for anyone to attend. The image below is from a lecture by Richard Cave about Voice Banking for people with Motor Neurone Disease.

In March the society continued on with our efforts, and we participated in the Swallow Awareness day to bring to light difficulties that can be experienced by people on a modified diet. I also received an Academic Achievement Award, and a nomination for the hard work I put in writing these blogs (thanks for this)!

April was jam packed with countless weddings, days grieving on Twitter after Tony Stark died (if you have not watched it by now, you deserve this spoiler) and dusting off my notes from the year in preparation for dreaded exams.

There is not much to say about May; it was definitely challenging to balance fasting for Ramadan whilst revising. Days after our fourth exam we entered June and my summer placement in an Adult Community setting commenced. I refined my clinical skills, and one of my proudest moments during placement was presenting for an hour on the relevancy and need of Speech and Language Therapy in the acute mental health client group.

A doodle drawn during peak revision hours

On the second of July I beamed with joy as I skipped out of my final exam for the year. Next week I welcome a new experience as a helper on an Intensive Stammering course for children and teenagers.

Reflecting has highlighted just how much happens in one academic year, as when you are in it time flies by so fast that there is barely any time to relish in the successes. Writing this blog post has also uncovered some changes I would like to implement in the next academic year – such as increasing my productivity by following soft deadlines and reducing the amount of time I spend completing BuzzFeed quizzes. What would you do differently next year?

Finding love at university – not a guaranteed method

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When exploring my potential university options, I would visit campuses in hope of experiencing a connection and knowing which university was ‘The One’ as soon I stepped through the doors. That did not happen. What did happen, was me increasing my step count on countless university tours, and realising how many Tescos there are in the UK. During the campus tours I found myself consistently hearing this word  – ‘society’.

There seemed to be this mystical thing called a ‘society’. This thing apparently guaranteed friends, fun and free food (occasionally). I kept hearing things like: “Join a society… you can even make your own society… societies are where I made my friends… join this society!”

Having not known many people who went to university growing up, I really was unsure what a society was. Now, three years in to my degree and with one year spent as the finance manager of the Speech and Language Therapy Society I am quite clued up. For this blog I have enlisted the help of Aadam, a recent graduate who has dabbled in a few societies during his time at City.

Thank you for joining me Aadam, I know you’ve been involved in many societies during your time at university. In your words what would you say a society is?

A society is a place for people to make friends and meet new people. In my experience, a lot of the people that turn up to a society don’t have an interest in what that particular society does. It’s mainly about socialising for them.

Which societies did you join?

I joined the Gaming Society in first and second year. During my third year I went to the Pakistani Society and ISOC (Islamic Society).

Aadam on a recent trip to Scaffel Pike with the Islamic Society

How did being in a society impact your university experience?

Being in a society changed my whole university experience. I met one of my now closest friends, and my best university memories are with her. Through her, I was even able to find a part-time job to fit around my studies. The best part is that I fell in love at a society!

That’s adorable, a true university romance! Now to finish off, would you recommend societies to other students?

I would recommend getting involved in as many societies as you can handle because you can never have too many friends. Societies will usually host at least one major event or outing every year, and these do not disappoint. I’d also recommend trying to get involved in the committee of a society if you have the time. That’s another way to get to know the people of your society more, but can also help you to develop transferable skills.

Wonderful, thank you Aadam for your time!

Fun fact: a member of the mountaineering society (I have been told) placed a rubber duck on top of the gazebo in Northampton Square. After being removed one day it reappeared the next and has not been taken down since, and neither has the culprit (or hero) been found! Go see if you can spot it!

If you want to find out more about societies at City, University of London then check out this link::

Come to the Welcome Fair to speak to society members and grab some freebies…

19-20th September 2019
Business Design Centre, 52 Upper Street, Angel, N1 0QH 4SP

Things To Do Around University

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Here is a literary masterpiece for you to read,
full of places you might need.
I cannot vouch for this poem’s quality,
But, it aims to reduce exam anxiety.
As the gong of revision harbours fear,
I invite you to explore places far, and near.

Before I start my tour,
do you hold the key to the discount door?
Why yes, I mean your student card,
To forget?! Blatant disregard.
I know that #tbt picture is peak,
Edges absent? Eyebrows off-fleek?
I wish I’d brushed my hair in mine,
the photographer lied, “You look fine!”

Anyways, starting with a beauty (other than me),
Have you explored the art of graffiti?
A sure way to up your insta game,
aren’t we all in it for the fame?
Shoreditch, Camden, Brick lane, Bethnal Green,
Of course, I will rhyme this line with the word ‘seen’.
You’ll get to 10k on your pedometer,
No need to shake your phone – cheater!

Walking not your thing?
Are your calories lost through excessive dabbing?
Core strengthened by laughing carelessly?
Go to Camden Head – comedy shows are free.
Look for opportunities on Eventbrite,
I found a poetry class for Tuesday night,
I should thank my FBI guy,
I’ll defo give that a try!

Most museums don’t cost a penny,
(Most students don’t have many).
The never-ending house of books,
Might just leave you shook.
Rosetta stone, mummies, dinosaurs,
historic toys, 60s décor, and artefacts of war
sitting behind a shield of glass,
an opportunity silly to pass.
If dinosaurs are too ‘basic’ for you,
Pickled specimens are available too.

Or do you prefer throwing shade, sipping tea?
PG Tips; not the Jordyn Wood-esque variety,
Escape rooms, dinner with a city view,
Massages, spa trips with the uni crew?
If parents are coming down,
‘Spoons might encourage a frown,
To hide your budgeting mishaps,
or last weekends judgement lapse,
hopp along to Groupon,
for a student-friendly coupon.

When studying has taken you to the verge of sanity,
Possibly nature is what you need to see.
I doubt these places give you clout,
but the Barbican Conservatory is a good shout.
They have a cactus garden there,
Fen Court Garden if booking Sky Gardens is a nightmare,
I’ve described a millennial dream almost…
I just forgot the avocado toast.

I will keep it a hunna (100) friend,
This awful poem must come to an end.
Well done if you got this far,
Good luck in your exams you star.
Click on the hyperlinks throughout,
AND take studying breaks to avoid burnout!

When the canteen no longer sparks joy

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Are you sick of eating pot noodles for lunch every day, or bringing your leftovers only having to wait ages in the microwave queue? Does the chicken katsu no longer spark joy in your life? Well then here are some restaurant options for you around university:

1.Mother Clucker
Address: 59-61 Rosebery Avenue, EC1R 4SD

In this tucked away shop behind Exmouth Market you will discover buttermilk soaked, twice batter fried chicken which melts in your mouth. I recommend the deep-fried halloumi but wait a few moments before burning your tongue like I did.This gem offers students 50% off between 2-6pm every day!

2. Kennedy’s of London

Address: 184-186 Goswell Road, EC1V 7DT

This is a stone’s throw away from university, so you could nip here and back between lectures as I regularly have done. They serve your classic fish and chips, pies and burgers, and most dishes come with hand cut chips (or salad if you prefer). I recommend going during lunch hours as they have a snazzy lunch time menu.

3. Boondocks
Address: 205 City Road, EC1V 1JN

I mainly go here for lunch because you can grab a burger or wrap with fries (or salad once again) for £6.95! They also call all students every Monday from 6-11pm during term time for discounted food and drink with a different DJ every week. What a dream… one hand flossing, the other grabbing a chip, hey I think I’ve created a new dance move.


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Cheesy bites, mac n cheese, loaded fries and burgers with cheese… did someone say cheese? 📸@londonfoodee

A post shared by Boondocks (@boondocksldn) on

4. Exmouth Market
Address: Clerkenwell, EC1R

This treasure will appease any fussy eater’s dream, with a plethora of options to select from you can walk up and down the market taking as long as you want to make a choice about where to eat. If things get too difficult, you can always resort back to the classic places like Pret-A-Manger which are also housed on the same street. Personally, I love a halloumi wrap with copious dollops of hummus.

There are countless other places to eat scattered near university, so go out and explore – most importantly, don’t be afraid to ask about student discounts!

The Start of Something New…

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So it’s that time, that time when you will be handed an unnecessarily large envelope that will determine your future (no pressure). For most of you out there anticipating (or dreading) results day, receiving your A-Level or BTEC grades will ultimately determine what university you choose to go to, so nerves are a given. The uncertainty is bound to not just give you butterflies but house an entire swarm of insects, or at least that’s how I remember feeling.

I remember the anxiousness leading up to the day, and the small things that would remind you results day is closer than you think. The awkward “so when are your results coming out” questions you’d get from relatives and friends. The UCAS emails reminding you to get your university stuff sorted. The sleepless night the day before where you and your classmates would hit up your group chat with all the emojis you can find to express how nervous you are.

While that sounds incredibly daunting, it’s also very exciting. I know I know, this is all coming from someone who’s already been through it (and thankfully made it out alive) but it truly is very exciting. You are now at the cusp of a new journey. Regardless of how you do, this is the start of something new (to quote Troy and Gabriella from a respected educational establishment known as East High). Hence, to help you make the most of this pivotal moment in your life, here are a few tips…

1. It doesn’t hurt to have a decent outfit on the morning you go to collect your results. It’s an exciting day for you, your worn-out teachers and your college that have earned the bragging rights to your grades too. Most likely, they will wander around with cameras, trying to piece together a group of cheerful students, representing every ethnicity. If you’re lucky, they might pick you and make you take an awkward photo like mine:

2. On a more serious note, remember not to compare your success with that of your peers. If you are satisfied with the grade you received and achieved your targets, that is all that matters. It’s easy to fall into a comparative spiral and lose faith in your own accomplishments, but this is YOUR hard work! The result of your long hours at the library perfecting your coursework, your extravagantly coloured exam notes that make no sense to anyone but you, and your relentless determination to make it through college. Own it! Embrace it!

3. Most importantly, no matter what grades you receive, this is only just the beginning. Whether you are satisfied with your grades or not, remember that there are so many options available to you from here on out so take a moment to explore them. There is still so much ahead of your journey, so remain optimistic. I’m positive your future is bright.

Independent Study

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Independent study is a new concept for many students when they enter the realm of university. Personally, I was unsure of, and anxious about independent study when I started. Who would be there to remind me of when my assignments were due, which books should I read and how could I cramp the content of two massive textbooks into my brain a week university starts? These are only some of the frightening questions that cluttered my mind.


Perhaps I should start with a brief introduction to independent study at university; it simply involves you taking responsibility for your education. As cliché as it sounds, you are expected to explore work that is relevant to your course, so you actually know what you are talking about (winging it only gets you so far, believe me). You will need to develop effective learning strategies in an environment where you are guided briefly on various topics. When I say ‘briefly’ I refer to the lectures, and the abundance of lecturers on hand to answer any queries you have about the work. So, do not worry, you are not all alone! Independent study can range from asking questions in lectures to writing an entire dissertation on a subject of personal interest. The quantity of independent study expected from you typically increases as you progress further in your course.


It can all sound rather daunting, but there are (believe it or not) positive benefits to independent study. You can tailor your learning to your learning style, whether that be watching YouTube videos, reading books or making posters. Often essay questions and exam dates are published months in advance so there is space for those who cram minutes before the deadline (not advised), those who create Gantt charts from the get go, or for those sensible people who do something in the middle. All this is important because independent study prepares you for the working world, as you are required to take responsibility for your own learning and manage your time effectively by balancing your social, work and university life.


To help you start thinking about independent study, here are a select few tips that I have found helpful:


  1. “Break it down.”
    When approaching that massive textbook, break it down like 90’s hip-hop. Take it chapter by chapter or even page by page – you are more likely to digest the information if it is in manageable chunks.


  1. “Practice makes perfect.”
    A bit of an obvious but important idiom. This can mean practicing exam questions or going over your lecture notes to test your knowledge. Revise topics repetitively could help reduce those ‘you know nothing Jon Snow’ panic attacks.
  2. “When will my reflection show who I am inside.”
    Learn from the words of a wise Disney princess and reflect on your feedback. What could you do more of next time? What would you add, or do less of? This can help you get higher grades for next time and make your independent study more specific (and more importantly, bring honour to us all).


  1. “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.”

Life does not have to be as glum as The Shinning. While being prepared and organised is critical, make sure you set yourself rewards to keep you motivated. A piece of candy a chapter works well for me but a healthier approach is always advisable.


  1. “We’re all in this together.”

Seek comfort in the mutual panic of independent study you and your fellow classmates endure.  You are not the only one trying to figure this all out. For most students, finding the balance between basketball and music is very challenging but if Troy Bolton can do it, so can you.

The Summer Before Starting University

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Your A-Level exams are ending soon, and the long summer awaits you before university begins. You have been anticipating these alarm-clock free mornings and that sweet satisfaction of crossing of the last exam boldly marked on your calendar. Some of your friends are off travelling, volunteering or even working. While that all sounds great, some of us are still wondering what to fill these months up with. Having an unplanned summer can make things a little anti-climactic, but do not let that get you down. We have a few tips to help make the most of your vacations.

1. Travel, obviously!

Although this is a given, planning a trip does not have to be something out of our budget. As Groupon and Wowcher taught us, we can save a whole lot on local getaways that will get our Instagram feed looking summery. Make the most of them!

2. Find a healthy balance between binge watching Netflix and going out.

While it is tempting to hibernate at home and break the world record for watching a series in a short space of time, space out those episodes. Schedule in some time to go out and enjoy the sun with friends and family, don’t just rot at home.

3. Take up a new hobby.

As cliché as it sounds, finally capitalise of this free time and take up that one hobby you always wanted to try. You might discover that you are basically Picasso. But do not be too disheartened if you paint like a two-year-old, we know it’s been awhile.

4. If you are just starting university, visit the campus!

Ideally before getting here on the first day, this would have really eased the continual mishaps involving walking in to the wrong room, or being in the wrong building!

5. Sort out your living situation.

For those living away from home, take the time to plan where you will be living in the upcoming year. Visit the accommodation and the local supermarkets to cut down on take-out costs; I highly recommend Chapel Market for your fruit and vegetables. You can find Facebook groups or forums of other students who are going to live there, which may ease any anxiety about making new friends. If you luck out, you might find someone living in the same flat as you.

Come and visit us at City, we have tours every week:

Fasting during Exam Season

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So, the blessed month of Ramadan has arrived. For those of you curious about what this month entails beyond starvations and dehydration, this month honours the revelation of the Quran to the Prophet Muhammed (peace be upon him). Abstaining from food, drink and sin from sunrise to sunset (approximately 18 hours) commemorates this month with a lot of effort, but it is worth the struggle. Fasting is attached to numerous health revelations and more significantly, reaffirms one’s faith in God –bringing us to a whole new level of zen that yoga sessions touch on.


This year, Ramadan falls on one of the busiest months for students, exam season. While us Muslim students intend on making full use of the dua (supplications) privileges we gain from fasting, the struggle of revising and fasting remains very real. To get you through this time, here are 7 tips and tricks on how to make the most of this month:


  1. Eat well, sleep well.

Eating the right food for iftaar (breakfast) and sahoor (the meal at sunset) is vital for ensuring you stay fresh and energised for as much of the day as possible. Since we both know staying away from fried food is nearly impossible –because let’s face it, who has that kind of self-control? Instead, just limit it. Concentrate on consuming foods rich in complex carbohydrates and protein, fruits and vegetables.


  1. Hydration is key.

Ration your water intake between eating hours. Aim to drink at least 1.5 litres in total because the more hydrated you are the more concentrated you will be.


  1. Change up your routine.

Make use of your optimum energy highs. After sahoor or iftaar works well, so schedule study sessions of difficult topics earlier on in the day when you have more energy and brain power.


  1. Diversify your study strategy.

Use visual cues to stimulate our mind, like flashcards and mind-maps. If you can stand the sound of your own voice, recorded voice notes work well too.


  1. Friends that fast/study together, stay together.

Make the most of studying with friends and classmates to help pass the time with collective agony and banter.


  1. Reality check.

Attending every gathering and event is tempting but you need to allocate your time wisely. Set realistic goals aim to work towards them without compromise.


  1. Find strength in spirituality.

As stressful as this period is, remember this is month is a blessing. Remind yourself why you are fasting to stay motivated and remember to keep up with your prayers and make lots of dua for your exams, you got this!

What went down in first year

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First year seems so far away; getting to grips with living away for the first time, cooking a few meals (buying a few more pizzas), managing my own timetable, making friends, finding paid work, budgeting, oh and how could I forget learning? The life of a first year student is both exhilarating and all-consuming. On an average day I would wake up, get ready, make breakfast following this well-known recipe: 

  1. Take out bowl, cereal and milk 
  1. Pour cereal in to bowl 
  1. Follow with milk  
  1. Stir and enjoy  

Followed by a short walk to university where I was greeted by a maze of lecture rooms. Shortly after I had located the room, the lecture would start and I would frantically note every word they said as I tried to soak in every drop of knowledge. Luckily, most lectures are captured for consumption at a later date, and can be a vital tool for those with auditory learning styles. Often another lecture, or lunch would follow where you’d eat lavishly at one of the food outlets on campus, or have microwave leftovers – solely dependent on whether your loan has “dropped”, as mentioned in many student memes:  

Then we might have another lecture or be free to do as we please. Usually I would book in a shift at work on those days, with the plethora of paid opportunities available to us as students at City. Work can vary drastically from delivering campus tours to mentoring college students beginning their university journey  – I’ll dedicate an entire post to working whilst being a student another time.  

After this long day, I would typically return to my flat, make a fool out of myself copying a Just Dance video on YouTube, make dinner than do a tad bit of revision or file away the notes I’d made that day. I wanted to keep on top of my learning, as the information from first year creates a stable foundation for learning to come. As a future Speech and Language Therapist this foundation has a heightened need, as I will use what I’ve learnt for the rest of my working life.  

After this I would fall in to a deep sleep, to a different schedule the next day as the university timetable differs daily.

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City, University of London

Northampton Square

London EC1V 0HB

United Kingdom

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City, University of London is an independent member institution of the University of London. Established by Royal Charter in 1836, the University of London consists of 18 independent member institutions with outstanding global reputations and several prestigious central academic bodies and activities.

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