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London Guide For Students - Learning
The UCL | Lessons at UCL | Other activities at UCL

III. Learning in London

1. The University College of London

UCL Logo

The UCL was founded in 1826, by Jeremy Bentham, a famous philosopher. His idea was to build a university for all people, regardless of race, creed or political belief. The University College of London was the first English College to do that (Oxford and Cambridge were religious, and still are).

UCL is one of the best universities in the world. In fact, this is the most important non-religious university in the UK and maybe in Europe. There, you can study almost everything, with the best teachers and scientists in Europe.

Moreover, UCL campus is not big, it's just huge. You know Jussieu, in Paris ? UCL is two or three times bigger ! You will need a lot of training if you don't want to get lost. Let me show you the campus map :

UCL Map - Click to Enlarge

You will be attached to the UCL Language Centre, located 136 Gower Street (E1 on the map), near Euston Square Tube Station, but you will probably have lessons everywhere in the campus.

The UCL Language Centre


2. Lessons at UCL

If things remain the same, you will have courses one day per week, during eight weeks (from October to November). The promo will be divided into five groups, with an English test you will pass at EFREI, before holidays. Each group will have a different day (Group 1 will have lessons on Mondays, group 2 on Tuesdays,...). At the end, you will receive a "Certificate of Attendance", saying that you have done 40 hours at UCL.

The typical day will be divided into three parts :

  • In the morning from 9.00 to 12.00, you will have English class. The main topic is about oral expression and pronunciation.
  • From 13.00 to 14.00, it's IT class. You're in a cluster room and you will be taught PHP and MySQL basics. In fact, you will have to copy, adapt and understand some scripts that are given to you.
  • And the last part, one hour later, is a lecture. Four lectures about "Leading", presented by an excellent teacher, and four lectures about web applications (technologies, design, security and e-commerce).

All these classes will happen in a great atmosphere, teachers are friendly and interesting.



In order to validate your lessons at UCL, you will have to be present 80% of the time. If not, you will have to justify your absence.

The last morning, you will have to make an oral presentation and to prepare a small essay. The mark will count for your EFREI semester.


3. Other activities at UCL

Cluster rooms

During your (small) scholarship in London, you will have an access to the UCL Cluster rooms (computer rooms). There, you have broadband internet (which is incredibly faster than EFREI's), print service (you have to pay for it), and CD burning. But in fact, the main problem is to find a room which is not full. You can find the complete list of clusters here.

There is a small room which is not often full : go to the Language Centre. There, go to the basement right by the stairs after at the reception, and turn right. The cluster is at the end of the corridor.

A cluster room


Eating at UCL

There is a refectory in the main building at UCL (G3 on the map). When you enter the UCL, take a door on the right of Building with the columns. There, follow the corridor and follow the direction "Lower refectory". The basic menu is about £2.40 for a cheeseburger, some chips and a fruit.

If you prefer, there are sandwiches in all UCL cafés. You can also find fast foods or food shops near Tottenham Court Road.


The Students Union

The UCL Students Union (UCLU) is like EFREI's BDE, but an hundred times bigger. During your stay, you can enjoy all the facilities given by the UCLU :

  • There are night events every week
  • You can subscribe for 3 months of fitness for £45 (that's really cheap). More details here,
  • You can go to The Bloomsbury theatre for cheap,
And lots of other things ! The best is to go directly to the Student Union, located 25 Gordon Street (H1 on the map)


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