Wiktoria Kulik: "Being a student in the department simply feels great!"

Wiktoria is a BA Philosophy student. She told us what it's like to study Philosophy at Sheffield.Photo of Wiktoria Kulik

Why did you choose to study in Sheffield?

I chose Sheffield because of its international reputation, diverse student community, and the flexibility my degree offered.

What made the University of Sheffield stand out for you?

Sheffield stood out with its vibrant international community, excellent Students Union, and the location just on the Peak District’s border.

What do you particularly enjoy about Philosophy?

Philosophy asks more questions than it provides answers to, and whenever you think you’ve established your position on a certain issue, you can find a compelling argument against it. For me, philosophy is an infinitely long journey with constant twists and turns. It leaves you intellectually thirsty, and always craving for more and more knowledge. No thinking or reading is ever enough!

How did the Department of Philosophy help support you through the whole process from application to settling in?

The department staff were really friendly and helpful when answering my questions through email. I also got a few information booklets, and a starter pack with some thought experiments to think about before the meeting with my personal tutor. Overall, I felt well-informed and confident about coming to university on my first day because I knew there is always someone there to ask for help.

What are your top tips for any students thinking about studying Philosophy in Sheffield?

Give yourself plenty of time to meet the application deadlines, especially when you need to have your school transcripts officially translated. Don’t hesitate to email the department with any questions you might have – big or small – it’s better to double check that you have everything you need and know the entry requirements specific to your country. If you have an opportunity, attend an open day. Don’t worry about English not being your first language – everyone is really helpful and understanding if you make a little grammar mistake here and there or don’t know a word. After a few weeks you will find Sheffield to be your second home.

Tell us about being a student in the department.

Being a student in the department simply feels great! Whenever I struggle or simply have a question about the material, I can always visit my professors during their office hours, or arrange a meeting that fits my schedule. During my two years in Sheffield, I’ve always felt welcome and the staff has always been helpful and friendly. Even though initially I thought the lecturers would be intimidating, it never feels out of place to ask a question or simply admit that I don’t understand something. PhilSoc –the Philosophy Society – gives you an opportunity to meet other students from your course, and because the department is rather small, it’s easy to make new friends. The undergraduate philosophy journal run by the students, and Philosophy in the City also provide an opportunity to get engaged with philosophy outside your studies.

I chose Sheffield because of its international reputation, diverse student community, and the flexibility my degree offered.

wiktoria kulik, ba philosophy

What is your highlight of studying and/or living in Sheffield so far?

One of the most important moments in my academic life happened during my first year module ‘Mind, Brain, and Personal Identity’ when we were discussing philosophical problems surrounding artificial intelligence. During the seminar, it dawned upon me that AI and its development is something I want to pursue as my future career. Ever since, thanks to the flexibility of my degree, I’ve been choosing the modules that will allow me to achieve the goal of becoming the researcher in the area of language processing. This summer, I also took part in Sheffield University Research Experience that allowed me to work on the topics that interest me most under supervision from one of my lecturers.

What do you know now about Sheffield that you didn’t know before you came here?

Sheffield is incredibly hilly! I read about it before I came here but experiencing it yourself is completely different. It’s also one of the greenest and most picturesque places you’ll ever see!

What are your plans after your study?

I am planning on doing MA in Speech and Language Processing, and hopefully work on the development of conversational programs.

What do you like about Sheffield?

Sheffielders are the friendliest people I’ve ever met. You will find yourself talking to complete strangers on the bus or in the shop all the time, and smiling twice as much as you used to!

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