University of Essex Student Review

By | May 14, 2021


I advise you to live directly on campus , as all of university life takes place there. Therefore, the so-called quays, which are 15 minutes away on foot, are ruled out as accommodation ! The rest is a matter of taste: The Houses and South Courts are rather quiet and only a few people share the kitchen there. I lived in one of the North Towers myself . The rooms look quite old and the hallways in the apartment are extremely depressing, but everything you need is there. I lived with 12 other people and shared the bathroom with 3 people (which worked wonderfully). The large kitchen is of course the central point of living in a shared apartment. You have to expect, however, that it can get louder from one or the other “social” (sports clubs warm up on Wednesdays) and house parties. For the Freshersweek (the first week of the winter semester, in which there is actually only partying) you should pack your earplugs;). Otherwise it was surprisingly quiet in the North Towers.

For me, the cheap, but not entirely modern, North Towers were the perfect choice! You quickly get to know a lot of nice people and you can always find someone to talk to in the kitchen.

In the South Towers you share an apartment with up to 15 people, the comfort is a lot lower than in the North Towers. But if someone loves the party life, they are definitely the right choice!

Since only students in the first semester and semester abroad are guaranteed accommodation on campus, you have to expect that the average age of the campus residents is 19 years.


The campus is quite small, but offers everything you need to live and study. Studying at a “real campus university” was a great experience . The small Spar supermarket is a bit more expensive than the supermarkets in the city, but ideal if you need something quickly or if you have forgotten something during normal shopping. There is simply everything your heart desires , from a hairdresser, two small lakes with a barbecue area, fitness studio, small stationery store, cafés, restaurants, post office, laundry, theater and bookstore . The university is constantly building new, modern and well-equipped buildings (such as the Essex Business School or the Silberrad Student Center) that are way ahead of those of the German universities!

In the evenings there is a lot going on in the Topbar or the SU-Bar, as well as the Subzero campus club.


Excursions to London, Oxford, Canterbury or Cambridge are possible . At the weekend (cheaper prices ) you should definitely take the public bus to Clacton-on-Sea for 30 minutes. There you can relax on the beach or have fun on the pier in the arcades (there are slot machine games, bumper cars and mini roller coasters).

The city of Colchester is approximately 10 minutes from the university. There are clubs, e.g. Missoula, Liquid, as well as a lot of pubs (Three Wise Monkeys, Molloy’s, Playhouse). In addition, Colchester is great for shopping at Topshop / Topman, River Island, New Look, etc. It is highly recommended to take a look at one of the many typical British charity shops and spend an afternoon in a tea house.

Not to be forgotten is the village of Wivenhoe. There you can walk through a small forest and stop in one of the pubs for breakfast or in the evening to watch rugby.

The Ryanair flights to Scotland are really cheap at around £ 18 from London Stansted! That is why an early weekend trip there is worth considering.

Free time on campus

Become a member of a society! No matter if sport, anime, theater, choir, astronomy etc. The society usually meets once a week to do something related to society together. Every now and then voluntary socials are held (with the athletes every Wednesday motto party, other societies go for a meal, go on trips or the like, for example). This is the best chance to get to know the British and pursue your hobbies or try something new.

For karaoke lovers, karaoke takes place every Monday in the SU bar. There is a great atmosphere there and if you don’t want to sing, you can just listen. If you want to sing, let it be entered in the list punctually at the beginning, as it usually fills up very quickly!

According to, on Wednesdays there is usually a party in the Subzero campus club (if you want, you can dress up for one of the athletes’ theme parties).

Every Thursday there is also a funny, typically English pub quiz in the SU bar. Mostly the British take part. But if you’re already doing a semester abroad in England , that’s of course a must. Arrive on time to get a good seat!

On Fridays there is an OpenMic-Night in the Lake Side Café . That means, if you want, you can perform on a small stage for 15 minutes. The incredibly nice presenter Steve creates a relaxed atmosphere. Even if someone has absolutely nothing to do with art or music, they should go there once (but only a little later, at the beginning there is always very little going on).


There – like at home – I attended law lectures and mainly attended courses on public law. The classes are quite small and, as in all courses at the university, attendance is mandatory (at the beginning of a lecture you have to hold your registration card in front of a card reader). Attendance is randomly checked in the course during the semester so that students do not simply hold the card to the device for other students.

The professors are very helpful and take time to deal with the students’ problems . Personally, I didn’t have to write exams, but essays. There either a problem was discussed or a small case was solved. The time required, especially for research, should not be underestimated! With good time management and a little self-discipline, all of this is possible.


If you want to save money, you should go shopping to Aldi in town instead of Tesco. Even if you have to take a taxi to Aldi (it’s best to share it with 4.), it’s still cheaper than buying from Tesco, as taxis are cheap in Colchester and Aldi products are significantly cheaper.

If you travel by train more than 6 times, it pays to buy a Railcard (age 16 to 25) for 30 pounds, as you save 30% on every ticket.

Don’t forget: take bed linen with you or order it comfortably in your room via “everything Essex” via the Essential Pack.

University of Essex