Student profile
Alex Pirie

Alex Pirie

"The University’s been sending us regular bulletin emails and it’s been good to have these communications as a single source for important updates."

Electronic Engineering with Space Systems with Year BSc (Hons)
Entry year
Research project

Space Engineering

What’s your remote learning experience been like so far?

Assessments and coursework have been largely unaffected. At this time in the semester, coursework typically becomes a priority, so if anything it’s been beneficial not to lose 40 minutes each day commuting to campus!

Two of my three taught modules have transitioned to online interactive lectures and Q&A sessions, while the third has changed to pre-recorded lectures.

What about the practical elements of your course?

As an electronic engineering student, my dissertation is a hardware-based practical project, which should have been completed in the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering laboratories on campus. Although I had the option of changing the aims of my dissertation to be more theoretical, I was keen to try to complete what I set out to achieve.

My project supervisor and the Department’s technical staff have been incredibly supportive and accommodating in working with me to do this. In particular, the University has loaned out laboratory equipment and redirected hardware deliveries to my home address to ensure I have everything I need.

What has communication been like during Covid-19 from the University and your department?

The University’s been sending us regular bulletin emails and it’s been good to have these communications as a single source for important updates.

At Department level, we’ve had interactive online sessions with our Head of Department who, as always, is doing a great job of keeping things running smoothly and keeping us updated.

In addition, we receive frequent updates from the Faculty’s Associate Dean, which have been a great help in navigating all the regulatory changes we’re seeing. Overall, I think we’re getting more communication that usual, which I’ve welcomed!

Has this helped you to still feel part of the Surrey community despite not being on campus?

Undoubtedly, yes. The academic community still feels solid and there’s also a very strong common ground within the student body with regards to adapting to this style of working. This in itself has encouraged a new online community.

Find out more about online and hybrid learning at Surrey, plus other information for prospective students.

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