Paige Clarkson

English Language and Communication, 2017

Paige Clarkson

I like how the course is a small group and you really get to know everyone, including the lecturers, on a personal level. I think this is truly special because it means people are there to help you and they genuinely care about your education and wellbeing

Before coming to Brookes, Paige completed her A-levels at a comprehensive sixth-form in Chesterfield, just outside Sheffield.

I decided to study English because I wanted to leave my options open. I wasn’t entirely sure what I wanted to do when I started university, but the course is now starting to paint a picture. I have a lot of options and different directions I can go in, and this is really important to me.

When attending an Open Day I loved the range of modules you could choose from, you could delve into education, media and the more nitty-gritty analysis side of things. I liked that because you can shape a pathway from all of these different areas to suit you. I've recently completed a forensic linguistics module which I really enjoyed. I like the overlaps between language and the law, and I am thinking of studying this in the future.

I like how the course is a small group and you really get to know everyone, including the lecturers, on a personal level. I think this is truly special because it means people are there to help you and they genuinely care about your education and wellbeing.

I love how close Oxford is to London, I definitely make the most of that. Oxford is such a beautiful, cultural and diverse city to live in, you really feel lucky being able to walk into such a beautiful city. I love that there is always so much going on, we get a lot of experts in English coming to speak nearby, such as David Crystal and Susie Dent!

In terms of the future, nothing is set in stone yet, but I am really keen on doing a master’s in Forensic Linguistics, then maybe continuing with research or working in the police force. I really want to make a difference to people who are disadvantaged, and I think being able to work with the police force in how to do things fairly just by the language they use is really invaluable. Brookes is one of the rare universities that offer a module in forensic linguistics, so I definitely think this will help my future career. By the range of modules available the university can really open doors you may not have originally expected.

As I am interested in critical analysis and intend to pursue research, there are plenty of modules that help these skills develop. For example, in ‘Analysing English Language’, even though this is a grammar module, it is still pretty hard going. The module helps you to pick out grammar from just looking at a sentence. The linguistics modules are also really helpful in the sense that they always cross over to some degree, so you can really start to pick up connections from lots of different theories and points of view.

I think it’s really great that you are assigned an academic advisor for all three years of your course at Brookes. They are happy for you to drop them an email and help with your work and juggling all the things that come with being a student. The staff in the English Language and Communication department are so helpful and are always ready to listen.

I’m a student ambassador for the university, which means I take prospective students on tours of the university. It’s so fun and is a really good part-time job, it teaches you invaluable skills such as how to be confident and take on responsibilities. I'm also a student rep for the Brookes Union, which is great as I attend meetings with the ELC staff and discuss what can be improved on the course. Having a student input in these meetings is really great, and the Brookes Union provides a student voice.