Here you will find useful information about your School’s student representation system.
First of all, let us introduce you to your School Representatives. Each School has two School Reps whose role is to listen to you and bring any issues you raise to the relevant staff and committee meetings, such as the Student-Staff Liaison Committee or your School Council. In Physics & Astronomy, the Undergraduate School Representative is Netra Gourlay and the Postgraduate School Representative is Ophelia Gunn. Feel free to get in touch with Netra if you feel that you have something important to say to the School! Your School also contains Class Representatives who work very closely with the School Representative, the Students' Association and the staff to ensure you make the most out of your courses. Potential areas Class Reps may engage with are issues with feedback, course content, and suitability of assessment.
The Physics and Astronomy School Council is a democratic structure and forum that enables you to take a proactive approach to your student life. It is a way for you and your coursemates to voice your opinions about what is going on in your School, and you are entitled to bring up issues and ideas that you consider relevant to the student experience in these meetings. You can ask your School Representatives to talk on behalf of you, or you can speak for yourself and count on their help to bring these issues forward and support you. They take place at least once a semester, so keep an eye out for updates from your Reps and don’t forget to attend – the more students that show up, the better! Last year the School Council was active and was held on a regular basis. A Class Rep forum was also held to gather the Reps’ experience and discuss their role within the School’s community.
There is also the Physics Peer Mentoring scheme where first year students can have a mentor from higher years to get support with revision and stay connected to the school community. Further information here: https://www.eusa.ed.ac.uk/support_and_advice/peer_learning_and_support/get_peer_support/find_a_project/organisation/physicsPMS/
In addition to Peer Support opportunities, you can make use of a number of Academic Societies implemented in your School. Whether you are looking for support in your studies, meeting like-minded students, networking or keeping up-to-date with your field of study’s latest news, they are the place to be! In the School of Physics and Astronomy you can find the Astrobiology Society which is for those with an interest in biology, chemistry, geology, physics and astronomy. There’s also the Physics Society which has regular socials and academic speakers, as well as trips to Laser Quest! The Astronomy Society is a society designed not just for people studying Astrophysics. It offers lectures, workshops, and observation nights in Holyrood, as well as film nights in Brass Monkey and visits to Edinburgh Royal Observatory.
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