Don't just take our word for it – here's what students say about what it's like to study at Kingston University.
Name: Harriet Hundertmark
Course: BA (Hons) Photography
Route to University: Art & Design Foundation
Year of graduation: 2017
Why did you choose Kingston University?
"I attended an open day where current photography students gave me a tour. The students were very friendly and helpful, and the atmosphere was very welcoming and inviting. The studio and darkroom facilities really stood out to me, especially the colour darkroom because it was a facility I had not had the opportunity to use before.
"The campus itself is small but this creates a strong sense of community allowing for all the creative subjects to be brought together which made me feel at home at the university. I knew that this was where I wanted to study.
"Also, Kingston town centre stood out to me because it is only a five-minute walk away from the Knights Park Campus where there are lots of shops and places to eat, right next to Kingston Riverside. Everything is right on your doorstep with only a twenty minute train journey into central London where there is always something to do and see."
Did you do a foundation degree first and was it of benefit?
"I studied Photography, English Literature and Sociology [A levels] at Richmond College. I decided I wanted to specialise in photography however I did not feel ready for university so I made the decision to study an Art and Design Foundation degree at UAL, London College of Communication. By doing this I feel like it helped me mature and develop in my independence and photography skills which made me feel more prepared to go to university."
What skills did your degree course give you?
"The course is small in numbers but that encouraged me to form relationships with my peers and tutors. I found this the most beneficial because we learned and inspired each other.
"Over the duration of the course, I have developed my technical skills as well as my practice as a photographer. The first year was very experimental and was open for me to explore different genres as well presentation methods; this allowed me to discover what kind of photography I wanted to create. The second year allowed me to refine my photography as well as create my website and learn new transferable skills like moving image and editing. The Art History modules throughout the course have helped to inspire my photography by giving context and increasing my knowledge in varied art movements.
"I also built new friendships by getting involved with opportunities and events throughout the university, such as becoming course rep for photography which allowed me to meet people from different courses."
How has your degree opened doors or enhanced your job prospects?
"After graduating I hope to study an MA in Curating, and I aim to work in the gallery sector specialising in photography."
Where there any obstacles to overcome in starting and then completing your course at university?
"My main concern in coming to university was the financial side of it. I knew university would be expensive, especially for photography due to extra costs for materials, but after consideration, I felt that university would be the best option for me to develop professionally as a photographer. Student finance has been the biggest help and the university has given me work opportunities that are flexible around my studies.
"Another concern I had was my dyslexia, but it was encouraging to find out that a high percentage of people studying at Knights Park have dyslexia or some form of learning difficulty. The course structure is well suited for my learning style because it is 100 per cent coursework."
What advice would you give to someone wanting to apply for Photography?
"The workload can be tough, but if you are passionate and motivated you will make the most of the opportunities and facilities that the course offers. The course is very independent and requires a lot of dedication and motivation; however the tutors are always available to help when needed.
"Also, if you live at home my best advice is to make the most of the campus facilities and make time to socialise."