Studying with fellow students from diverse backgrounds

Profile picture of ScHARR Student
Nils Runge
Postgraduate student (alumni)
MSc Clinical Research
"Studying in Sheffield means that you will meet people from all around the world. This is a great experience, and I made many good friends."
Profile picture of ScHARR Student

Can you tell us a bit about your background and what led to you deciding to do the MClinRes? 

I am a physiotherapist from Germany living in the UK for around 4 years. I came to the UK in 2017 to do a Masters in Advancing Physiotherapy Practice and stayed afterwards. Clinically, I am working in the NHS and privately with a special interest in supporting people with persistent pain conditions. For a long time, I had a strong interest in clinical research which had not been satisfied by my previous course. Furthermore, I had been thinking about doing a PhD but did not want to leave clinical work at this stage. Therefore, I was looking into different part-time courses and found the Clinical Research course at ScHARR which seemed to suit my situation and interests very well. Doing it part-time allowed me to keep up my clinical work but still improve my knowledge around many aspects of clinical research.

Why did you choose to study at Sheffield?

I have been living in Sheffield for two years when I decided to start the course. Therefore, it was very convenient to continue my studies here. However, I think the main reason why I chose the University of Sheffield was its good reputation and positive remarks of colleagues that had previously done the clinical research course. They wholeheartedly recommended it and highlighted that most lecturers are experienced researchers working on large trials. 

What do you find most enjoyable or rewarding about your time studying here?

Studying in Sheffield means that you will meet people from all around the world. This is a great experience, and I made many good friends. Also, I found it very impressive that the course was structured in a way that allowed people with different backgrounds and baseline knowledge levels to follow it well while still going into sufficient detail. In my experience, this can be very difficult and is certainly not always the case.

What challenges have you met in doing the MClinRes and how have you overcome them?

Working while studying can be challenging and often comes with high levels of stress, especially around exam time. Additionally, the COVID-19 pandemic made things even harder and more complex to manage. However, the course team was very helpful and supportive. I have been able to use assignment extensions where needed and have received answers to any queries in a very timely manner. Knowing that there is support and options of how I can adjust aspects, have helped me significantly to get the best out of the course while keeping my stress levels manageable. 

What are your plans for the future?

I recently applied for a competitive PhD fellowship and will hopefully start my PhD at the end of the year. I was able to directly transfer many aspects from the different modules into the application and I am convinced that the knowledge I have gained in the course has significantly helped my changes to receive the fellowship.

What advice would you give to someone considering studying at Sheffield?

Do it I think you will find the experience rewarding on many levels. The course is great, the people are nice and the nightlife in Sheffield is great. However, if you like it more relaxed, the Peak district is just 20 minutes by bus, and Sheffield is very centrally located in the UK which means that travelling around the country is very easy.

Weekly online events

Attend an online event when it suits you, all year round, as an alternative to an open day.

Every Wednesday, Sheffield Live sessions cover different aspects of University life. You can also meet your department and learn more about studying your subject.