Former A level History, Economics and Law student Ian talks about his experience at Callywith and studying Medieval History at University of St Andrews.

Previous School: Sir James Smith Community School

Courses studied: A level Economics, Law and History

Progression: Medieval History - University of St Andrews.

How are you finding your course/experience at university?

I would be lying if I said that I didn't find online learning challenging to a certain extent, however the overall experience of going to university has been an enjoyable one- having the independence of living at halls has been very liberating and the ability to study my favourite aspects of my subject in depth has been incredibly rewarding and I have genuinely enjoyed being able to research these areas.

How did your time at Callywith influence and support your choice of/transition to university?

As someone from a homeschooled background, Callywith helped me a great deal in developing my academic skills and understanding as well as the social aspect of college which has helped no end in being able to engage with new people and make friends wherever I am. Lecturers at Callywith College also helped my choice of university by encouraging me to look at the wider selection of university courses available to me. 

What do you enjoy in particular about studying History?

I've always had a passion for history, having been brought up on family outings to museums, castles, etc., I find history both a fascinating subject to study and a rewarding one as it allows you to develop your ability to understand the world around you by learning how things have come to be. Studying history requires you to develop your critical thinking by challenging and evaluating sources and I think this is important not only to your broader understanding of the world but also in the development of yourself as a person.

How have your A Level studies helped you in your degree?

My A-levels have provided me with a solid foundation in understanding how to analyse and evaluate academic material as well teaching me how to structure coherent arguments. My A-levels have also helped me to develop my understanding of academic research and related skills like referencing.  

What are you hoping to do in the future?

I am hoping on either going on to serve in the Armed Forces or the Civil Service.