My Summer School experience: Vhairi

Studying at our Summer School can be your gateway into studying full-time at King’s. That is exactly what happened Vhairi Motherwell. Read more below…

Vhairi Motherwell chats about her time at King’s

‘The King’s College London Summer School made my summer of 2011 one of the best summer’s of my life. I originally chose to attend the London in Film course to experience studying at King’s as I wanted to study there full time. I have now completed my first year of BA Film Studies, and I know that my experiences at the Summer School played a major part in me wanting to stay for 3 more years.

The London in Film course addressed the history of film in London in three sections: ‘Victorian London’, ‘London at War’ and ‘Modern London’. As it was a three-week course, we studied each topic for a week and progressed in a linear fashion, making it easier to understand the change the city went through.

In the ‘Victorian London’ week, we were shown one-minute long street scenes of Westminster and Blackfriars Bridge, while studying early cinema techniques in magic lantern slides and zoetropes. We also saw films that were set in Victorian London but made later. These films included well-know characters such as Sherlock Holmes and Sweeney Todd, as well as Jack the Ripper – I think this was my favourite week! ‘London at War’ brought propaganda and the Blitz into view, as well as films released after 1945 that still commented (in some way) on the war itself. The last week, ‘Modern London’, concerned the “swinging sixties”, allowing us to watch Alfie (Lewis Gilbert, 1966) and revel in the sexual awakening of the city. In each week we watched at least one documentary (or street scene) that was able to put the fictional films into perspective. Watching films made outwith the period we were examining, also allowed us to see the difference between the reality of the time and how it was represented in later years.

London in Film, not only taught me about major stages in London’s cinematic and social history, but also allowed me to experience a London beyond simple tourism. As well as trips to the British Museum, Imperial War Museum and the Museum of London to put the films into context, we also went for walks around relevant parts of the city. For ‘Victorian London’ we took a stroll down Fleet Street, (the fictional location of Sweeney Todd’s Pie Shop) and wandered into the picturesque area of Temple. The next week we visited St. Bride’s Church, another hidden beauty, further along Fleet Street. These “hidden gems” are ones that I would never have seen or found on my own, and they remain some of my favourite parts of London.

Aside from the course, the Summer School itself had a lot to offer, including a bus tour when I first arrived, pub quiz at the end and various parties and events in between. The Strand Campus is so central that everything seems close, so after class is finished it is easy to saunter into Covent Garden and make the most of being in London. I made friends from all over the world and, honestly, I could not have had a better summer.’

Our courses – Business and Management

Studying business is not just for those planning a career in the corporate world. Nowadays almost every career out there requires one to possess some business acumen in order to succeed.  However, finding the time to study the theories of business and put them into practice is not always easy.

That is why taking a Business and Management course at the King’s Summer School could be the way forward for you. Always popular, our courses cover a range of business and management topics, from Strategic Management to E-Business. Studying business and management at King’s is a truly unique opportunity for a myriad of reasons. Not only does the university have a reputation as a world academic leader, its location, in the heart of London a stone’s throw from leading international business headquarters and companies, means that all our Business and Management courses are academically rigorous, challenging and rewarding.

‘It was a great experience. It was the best three weeks of my life and I had a wonderful time. Thanks KCL.’ Pritam Chowdhury India, E-business – The Online Entrepreneur, 2012

With two session spread out over six-weeks, there is a Business and Management course to suit everyone’s needs at the King’s Summer School. Those interested in expanding their knowledge of the E-Business world can take ‘E-Business – The Online Entrepreneur’, which helps students of all ages get to grips with doing business online with success, and how to make the most of the digital world for your business.

‘Tutor and the course are really excellent, and I will recommend the course to my friends’ Camille Martin, UK, Art of Leadership 2012

Students interested in more theoretical study can take the popular International Business or International Marketing courses, both of which cover introductory business and marketing theory, combined with trips to thriving local businesses.

 

‘I liked the objectivity and accuracy of content.’

Nuno Filipe Machado Reis, Portuguese, EU Law 2012

Students attracted to putting into practice sensible business knowledge will be interested in taking The Art of Leadership or Launch your International Business Career.

Whichever course you choose, you will guaranteed a fantastic experience in a world leading institution, taught by passionate tutors.

 ‘I enjoyed the diversified culture and interactive teaching style’ Student from China, E- Business – The Online Entrepreneur, 2012

More information on the courses available can be found here. Also do remember to check out our videos for even more information on courses!

Everyone was so friendly and helpful (including the tutor). The class became very close after three weeks.’ Student from the USA, International Business, 2012

Meet the tutors: Katharine O’Reilly

Interested in learning more about a particular course? Who better to talk to than the tutor in charge! This week, Katharine O’Reilly, the tutor for Ancient Philosophy, tells us a little more about her course and why London is the perfect setting for it.

‘One of the real advantages of studying Ancient Philosophy at King’s College London is that this city is a hub for the discipline – in addition to the course, there are talks by scholars, and other events, nearly every day.

We’re also so lucky to have the British Museum on our doorstep, and during the course we make a trip to see the Greek collection, and usually have a talk from an expert.  This last year we were lucky enough to have Sam Moorhead speak to us about a new interpretation of the Elgin Marbles.  Experiences like that transport us back to the cultural surroundings in which the philosophers we study flourished.

One of the aims with which the course was designed is to bring out the very practical consequences of doing philosophy.  For the Ancient Greeks this was obvious: the philosophical school you were part of, and the conclusions you agreed with, dictated your life choices. Philosophy was a lived discipline.  One of the wonderful things about the Summer School is that for many students studying away from their usual surroundings, joining this new community is a chance to do some self-reflection. Studying the Ancient Greek philosophers is a chance to use their work to help inform your thinking about your life, and for some that experience will be transformative.

In addition to doing close reading of ancient texts, and debating the issues therein, we also look at modern writing which attempts to answer some of the same questions.  This unique format means that in a short time, we not only get to grips with how to understand and evaluate philosophical arguments, we also get to trace the intellectual history of an idea up to the present debate.  As a skill set to walk away with, this has some of the widest applications.

The key questions we look at include some of philosophy’s most essential problems: Are the events of tomorrow already decided today? Can anyone ever really know anything?  What is happiness, and is it different than pleasure?  What is justice, and what do we owe each other?  In class we’re interested in understanding what answers that ancient and modern philosophers have given to these questions, but we’re also interested in being critical of their arguments, and considering our own answers to the philosophical puzzles raised.  Seeing students find their own voice in these central debates is always exciting.

Now that spring has arrived in London I’m very excited that this year’s Summer School is approaching.  I invite you all to come and wonder with the ancients, and discover why the whole history of philosophy is merely ‘a series of footnotes to Plato’.

You can watch a short introductory video of Katharine chatting about her course here.

My Summer School experience: Polina

Hi! My name is Polina and I’m going to tell you about my experience in King’s Summer School, British Monarchy course.

My first impression was the hall of residence – Stamford Street apartments. I really enjoyed staying there – close to the campus, close to the library, and close to the underground. The whole building was really tidy, and I was particularly touched by tea and sugar, available in the kitchen (I arrived late at night).

The course itself was fantastic. We visited several museums and Buckingham Palace. I am really grateful to Mr. Luke Blaxill – our tutor – for creating a friendly atmosphere in class and for encouraging us to analyze all the information we received and to express our ideas freely.

I made a lot of new friends during my three-week stay. It was great to study together with so many nice people. I started to miss them already in Heathrow on my way back home.
What struck me with particular amazement was the Maughan Library. I found there a lot of very useful materials for my essay. No wonder, actually, it is so large that I sometimes I had to use a map.

Last but not least. I’m not a native speaker, and I’m usually afraid to miss something important. So my favourite activity was to approach different people asking questions, usually the same one for several times. I’m really grateful to all people working in Strand Campus, Maughan Library and Stamford Street apartments for being so helpful and so patient.

And I really miss my walks around London! 🙂

My Summer School experience: Laura

Last summer I had the opportunity of a lifetime, participating in the second session of the King’s College London Summer School. Living in Central London, engaging in a hands on course, learning more about the UK, and meeting students from all over the world truly made my experience enriching, eye-opening, educational, and fun!

I was afforded the opportunity to participate in the Summer School through the US-UK Fulbright Commission King’s College London Summer Institute. My course of study was “The Olympic City: Global Games, Local Impact,” taught by Jason Luger.

Jason did a fantastic job of making classes engaging, allowing for student participation and interaction as well as frequent trips around London. We not only studied the Olympic impacts in the classroom, but also were able to witness them first hand; we visited venue sites, toured the Olympic bid city of Manchester, and observed key events such as the torch relay.

This successful integration of classroom and hands on study allowed my classmates and me to fully immerse ourselves in and appreciate our studies.

 

Furthermore, it provided me with a wealth of Olympic related information which I am now utilizing in my current education. As an Industrial Labour Relations major at Cornell University, I am hoping to examine the effect of the Olympics on a host city’s domestic labour market, as part of a course’s final research paper.

Of course, academics were only one portion of what made my experience at King’s so fantastic. Having never been to the UK before, I enjoyed the site-seeing and cultural experiences I was able to participate in. Living in the Stamford Street apartments provided easy access to all the exciting attractions Central London has to offer, such as the London Eye, Parliament, Big Ben, and Piccadilly Circus. However, in addition to participating in touristy activities, spending three weeks in London allowed me to explore the country more thoroughly.

I visited museums and travelled to Oxford, Stonehenge and Windsor and around the less
touristy areas of London. I frequented local markets, tasted new cuisines, and gained a better understanding of the intricacies of European life and culture.

However, studying at King’s not only afforded me an opportunity to experience London life, but also to learn more about the world in general. My classmates hailed from countless different countries in Europe, Asia, and North America, facilitating the rare opportunity of getting to know people from completely different backgrounds and learn about their lives. I left King’s with several new friends from all over the globe, expanding and significantly diversifying my personal network.

In hindsight, I cannot imagine any way I would have preferred to spend my summer. It has now been six months since my trip, and I am left with new friends, a huge knowledge base in my Olympic course of study, a better appreciation for European history and culture, a plan to spend a semester abroad in the UK, and the memories of a lifetime. Not a day goes by that I don’t miss my morning walk to class across Waterloo Bridge, and I am eternally grateful to the Fulbright Commission and King’s College London Summer School for enabling me to have the best three weeks of my life!

Fulbright Scholars show their stripes at the London Olympic Games

 

Our courses: Arts, Literature & Culture

 

Arts, Literature & Culture courses at King’s College London Summer School

London is known for the arts. From the Royal Ballet in Covent Garden to Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, there is no city on earth better than London in which to explore these subjects.

 

 

‘King’s is situated right in the middle of everything. I went on the London Eye and really enjoyed my strolls along the Thames.’

~ Morgan MacKenzie Walker, Jane Austen’s England, 2012

King’s College London, centrally located in the heart of London on the Strand, is the ideal place to be based for a summer of study in London. Our Summer School offers over 20 courses in the fields of Arts, Literature and Culture, and since our Summer School began, these subjects have been some of our most popular for visiting Summer School students.

‘I enjoyed learning about the different types of performances there are from Shakespearean to the West End to fringe performance. I also enjoyed the trips we took outside the classroom which really helped me gain a better understand of these types of performances and helped me see the city.’

~ Saxony Nielsen, Theatrical London: Contemporary Performance in the City, 2012

King’s College London has a long-standing reputation of excellence for teaching the arts, and the Summer School continues this excellence, with world class tutors, who are specialized in their fields.

London is the city of Shakespeare. Our course Shakespeare in London explores the Bard’s life in London, from his life-time in the city to his lingering presence felt now on every corner. Take a listen to course tutors Sarah Lewis and Sarah Dustagheer to learn more.

Film studies are always a popular choice for Summer School students. And what better place to study the history of British film then in the city where it was founded? Our course London and Film  offers you the perfect introduction to film studies. Our Summer School alumni Vhairi Motherwell can tell you more.

From Monty Python to Borat, British comedy has always led the way for comedians to push the boundaries. Comic Culture in British TV and Film explores this idea, and uses the resources King’s and London can offer to help students get the most out of their time in the city.

Other courses will take you outside of London to explore the culture of Europe. Listen to Niamh Campbell speak about her course, ‘Literature in the City’, which explores the literature of London, Dublin and Berlin.

‘The field trips we took helped me to better understand the subject matter, explore England, and really enjoy the course. I can thank my tutor for that as well.’

~ Morgan MacKenzie Walker, Jane Austen’s England, 2012

These are just a sample of the many courses that we do. To find out more, please visit our website, drop us an email, or give us a ring!

‘It was a once in a lifetime experience and I wouldn’t trade any part of it.’

~ Morgan MacKenzie Walker, Jane Austen’s England, 2012

Welcome to the King’s Summer School blog!

Welcome to the new King’s Summer School blog. We hope that the blog will be a great place for you to learn more about the Summer School, the courses we offer, and the university that we are part of. We also plan to tell you loads about life in London and how to make the most out of your time here if you decide to study with us this summer.

Each week the blog will have a new post, new tutors telling us more about their courses, Summer School alumni reminiscing on their time in London and King’s, and news and advice directly from the Summer School team. remember you can always find us on our website, Twitter and Facebook.

But why attend a Summer School in the first place? 

Attending a Summer School is a fantastic way to broaden your academic outlook, learn in a new environment and gain credit towards your university study. The Summer School at King’s offers all these things and more, and also gives you the chance to study in a world-leading university in the one of the world’s most dynamic cities. Not only to our Summer School students benefit from learning from leading academics, they also form friendships and contacts for life. Why not listen to Summer School alumni Melissa’s student profile to see why she decided to study with us.

Why should I choose King’s?

The King’s College London Summer School is a high quality and intensive academic programme open to students from around the world. We offer university-level summer courses which use a fresh approach to the study of traditional academic subjects.

Located in the very heart of London, accommodation and classes are next to many of the great cultural, social and entertainment attractions which London  has to offer. We even offer a lively social programme to complement the academic programme with events offered both on and off campus, including boat trips along the Thames, trips to Bath and Oxford, and the Warner Bros. Studio Tour to experience some Harry Potter magic! All this helps our students make the most of their time in London, both academically and culturally.

How can I learn more? 

Well this blog is a great way to start! For information on what courses are scheduled to run this Summer, details on fees, accommodation and our social programme, can all be found on our website. Please note that as we get closer to the summer, more and more details will be confirmed, so make sure to check back regularly! We also have our Facebook and Twitter pages, and if you have a particular question that cannot be answered, please email us at summerschool@kcl.ac.uk.

Until next week!

Summer School team x