Support for mature students
We know that coming to university as a mature student can be a very different experience from arriving direct from school or college. Whether you want to forward your career or explore an area of interest, we will support your specific needs.
Mature students make up an important part of our university community – 43% of our students are at least 22 years old on entry, with 24% being 25 years old or over (as of 1 December 2011).
To help you meet other people in a similar situation to yourself, we:
- hold a question-and-answer session for mature students in Freshers' Week;
- run a mature students' forum to provide ongoing peer-to-peer support, plus you will have access to an online version of the forum for advice and networking; and
- have a Mature Students' Society, which aims to be a supportive forum for like-minded students. It holds both both evening and day-time meetings in Kingston, and organises social events to promote friendships between mature students embarking on or returning to university education.
Please contact us if you have any queries about coming to Kingston University as a mature student or about the Mature Students' Society.
The mature student experience
Mature students form a very important part of the of the university's inclusive diverse culture and it is important that their concerns, contributions and suggestions are listened to and dealt with appropriately.
The mature students' officer is your representative to the University and the Students' Union. As the mature students' officer they work with many different parts of the university to communicate mature students ideas and opinions.
They are able to assist in dealing with all issues that may affect mature students including academic and social issues.
During the course of your university experience the mature students officer holds regular consultations with mature students from across the university. To become more involved in shaping your university experience, or to chat with your mature students officer, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Together we can make our journey an enjoyable one.
We know that mature students often have to combine study with commitments at work or home. We offer different study options, including part-time and work-based degrees, to help you manage this. We also provide a range of support services, including a nursery.
"Juggling being a full-time mum and an undergraduate student is a 24/7 occupation. It has meant becoming super organised."
Lucy Furlong (38), Creative Writing BA(Hons)
If you have been out of education for some time or don't have the right qualifications, a foundation programme might be a good option.
"I was dreading studying again – I felt far more confident in the workplace than I did in the classroom. However, I have realised that my experience has more than prepared me for the classroom."
Robyn Todd (22), Business and Finance HND
"Kingston is welcoming to mature students and there was no attention drawn to the fact that I and another man were older than the other students. Studying with a group of people younger than me has helped keep me young!"
Mary Tobin (44), Pharmacy MPharm
Our site-based Academic Skills Centres can provide support and advice on study skills, including academic writing, referencing, research, IT and data handling and oral presentations. Plus our MathsAid resource will help you develop though personal one-to-one tutor contact via drop-in clinics, peer-assisted learning and virtual learning.
"I doubted my ability to undertake a university course over 40 years after I left school with no formal education undertaken in the meantime. But this course has shown me what I am capable of."
Ian Davies (62), Creative Writing and Literature BA(Hons)
Our Student Funds team is always available if you need advice about your finances and can help make sure you get all the funding you're entitled to, including funding for dependents and council tax exemption. Many of our students combine their studies with a part-time job. KU Talent (careers and employability) has plenty of advice about job hunting both before and after you graduate.
"I think most mature students are worried about getting back into studying, and leaving behind the lifestyle we had before coming to uni."
Renata Rez (28), Environmental Management BSc(Hons)
"I really appreciated the availability of help from lecturers and postgraduates, as well as the extra study sessions available. I felt that students' views really counted, especially when dealing with any problems or requests."
Martin Allison-Broomhead (26), Civil Engineering BSc(Hons)
"One of the things I've really liked about Kingston is the close, friendly relationship I've enjoyed with most of my lecturers and the other University staff I've dealt with. And although it seemed daunting, I loved the way we were made to really analyse everything we learnt."
Daniel Wakely (27), Sports Science BSc(Hons)
What our students say
Find out more about what it's like being a mature student from the people who really know – our current students.
Pete talks about returning to university after working in the IT industry, and the benefits of studying again:
Robyn talks about some of the challenges she has faced as a mature student, how she has dealt with them, and what she has learnt:
Sheila shares her experiences as a mature student at Kingston, including why she chose Kingston and how she feels she has fitted in: