I liked the look of the course because of the sheer breadth of knowledge that I felt I could acquire from it. It covers everything from assembly language to web design, and as I was coming from an academic background outside of Computer Science, I found the option to study such a wide range of topics very exciting.
What initially attracted me was the Department's reputation for research – I knew that if I wanted advice about a tricky or esoteric problem there would be someone on hand who would be both willing and able to help me out. That said, the second thing that made me want to come here is the location! York's a truly lovely city to live in – not only because of the vast variety of pubs, gardens, museums and restaurants that it has to offer but also because of the general atmosphere of the place – it's both friendly and relaxed.
The quality of teaching is excellent – it's a great feeling to sit in a lecture and know that you are being taught by an expert who is not only at the cutting-edge in their field but is also passionate about passing along the knowledge that they have. As I mentioned earlier, I've also enjoyed the breadth of the MSc in IT: due to the fact that we have such a large number of modules on disparate topics, I've discovered interests in areas of IT that I honestly never thought I would find exciting – for example, relational databases!
The breadth of scope that the MSc in IT offers makes it both a challenging course and a very rewarding one. I found myself enjoying the way that each module built on the information that was given in a previous one. The programming concepts learned in an early module, for instance, were necessary for a more complex later module on software architecture. The course is well-designed, and each module feels like a puzzle piece that fits into a larger pattern, a pattern designed to enable you to master a comprehensive set of useful skills.
Some of the lecturers whose modules I've taken have been truly inspirational and their enthusiasm for their subject matter really shines through in well-designed and exciting lectures. I've also enjoyed how helpful the teaching staff have been in the lab sessions – the help that they offer with even the simplest of problems is always delivered in a friendly and professional manner.
I really love living in York. It's small enough that you can get anywhere in the city you need to be in under half an hour, but large enough that it offers a large selection of shops, pubs, bars, restaurants and supermarkets. With its museums and historic architecture it's the sort of place that people book a holiday specially to come and visit – actually living here rather than just visiting has been great!
I would thoroughly recommend the University of York to any prospective student with a genuine passion for their chosen subject. Not only are the Departmental facilities state-of-the-art and the staff both knowledgeable and helpful, but also (and more importantly perhaps) I've found that the way the courses are structured provides a great way to meet new people with interests similar to your own – the best conversations I've had during the past year have been with a group of friends that I met whilst on my course.
I'm now staying on in the Department to complete my PhD in narrative structures for interactive dramas in the Aritficial Intelligence research group.
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MSc in Information Technology