Male student carrying out research in the river basin room

Living a researcher’s life on placement

I was once told in an interview I conducted for an assignment that research is constant in every part of your life and have come to understand that it can become a lifestyle as much as it is a job. The reality of the vast number of hours required to develop, conduct and analyse research became very apparent in the earlier stages of this project.

As with many parts of the placement; I learned that no plan survives or works the first time around. Designing and implementing a methodology with which to conduct representative and accurate research was by far the biggest culprit for siphoning my time throughout this project. I would say that the implementation of the experimental design was the greatest challenge as the time it takes to alter and finetune some of the setups were labours and time consuming. A specific example was deciding how we would quantify the amount of sediment and microplastics were being transported at each hydrograph.

By consulting my supervisors and doing a bit more reading we decided on designing a fixed bed system by gluing sediment to wooden boards so that the only material being transported is from our samples. Though it was a challenge it came with the benefit of giving me not only a great level of insight into the nuances of conducting scientifically relevant and accurate research; but it also enforced my ability to think critically and to solve problems. Read More

Photo of Elena Hoover

A new look at care

University of Brighton researchers are contributing to an installation and programme of events that provide an insight into experiences of care for older people.

The programme of talks, films and workshops at Fabrica in Brighton – entitled ‘Intensive Care’ – accompanies ‘Care(less)’, a virtual reality installation produced by British artist Lindsay Seers with input from Brighton academics lead by Dr Lizzie Ward. Its aim is to highlight and explore our relationship with caring.

The events taking place as part of ‘Intensive Care’ include a discussion called ‘Conversation Piece – Feminism and Care’ on Wednesday 23 October, led by University of Brighton doctoral candidate Elona Hoover of the Centre for Spatial, Environmental and Cultural Politics.

The topics that will be covered include compassionate resistance, radical care and autonomising care as a collective practice.

Looking ahead to the event, Elona said: “I think this discussion is important because it emphasises the ethical and political nature of care as a set of ideas and practices. Read More

Dr James Ebdon accepts the award on behalf of Professor Huw Taylor

An honour for Professor Huw Taylor

The first winners of the Professor Huw Taylor Prize – named in honour of the late Emeritus Professor of Microbial Ecology at the University of Brighton – were announced at a ceremony in Vienna.

The prize, which recognises ‘exceptional scientific contribution to provide water or sanitation solutions in emergency and developing settings’, was launched at the International Water Association’s 20th biannual Health-Related Water Microbiology (HRWM) symposium.

There were two winners of the inaugural award: Professor Taylor himself – in recognition of his exceptional contribution to the health-related water microbiology science field and to the HRWM specialist group – and Imperial College London research student Laura Braun.

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First field trip for new students in our geology subject area

Welcome to all our new students!

Professor Martin Smith introduces our new geology subject area students to working in the field with a trip to Telscombe Cliffs.

“After two days of welcome to university information for new Geology, Physical Geography and Geology and Earth and Ocean Science students, we headed out to Telscombe Cliffs to actually experience some earth science and coastal oceanography. Braving the wind and (luckily) less rain, 30 students and staff investigated how the cliffs record slices of earth history.

We started with periglacial weathering and soil processes at the cliff top. Then we climbed down the steps to the beach to look at the sedimentation of the ancient (Cretaceous) ocean floor recorded in the chalk and flint, including a wide range of fossils – brachiopods, sea urchins and sponges all had a starring role.We then looked at the record of post-depositional tectonic events in faults, fractures and flint-filled mineral veins. Finally, we walked along the water line and found evidence of modern change in the coastal environment, from plastic pollution to the reduction in the water table and the shift of freshwater spring discharge to below sea level. Read More

First field trip for our Geographers, Cuckmere Haven

Welcome to all our new students!

Dr Mary Geary, senior lecturer in Human Geography, introduces our new Geography students to working in the field with a trip to Cuckmere Haven.

“There’s nothing like a charabanc full of slightly soggy staff and new students heading off to the coast to kickstart the new academic year. As part of our introductory welcome week here in the School of Environment and Technology the Geography, Archaeology and Environmental Sciences teams always take our fresh intake of first year undergraduates off to visit one of Sussex’s most iconic landscapes – the Seven Sisters, viewed from the estuary of the River Cuckmere in Cuckmere Haven. Read More

Graduate stories – Esme Whitehouse

Graduating from Geology BSc(Hons), Esme won the Rory Mortimore Geology Prize as the student with the best overall performance across the university’s geology courses.

  • What made you choose Brighton and this course?

I have loved Geology since I took it as a GCSE so I didn’t struggle to make a choice when it came to picking a degree course. I chose Brighton through clearing.

  • How did you feel when you were first accepted to Brighton, and how has the reality compared to what you imagined?

I was very glad to have a place to study Geology but I was obviously nervous about moving to university. It didn’t take long for me to realise I had nothing to be nervous about, it’s too much fun! Read More

Explore your options through Clearing

Good luck to everyone getting their A-Level results today!

If it doesn’t go to plan or you’ve had a change of heart about what you want do next, Clearing is a chance to change direction and make new plans.

If you need help navigating your way through the Clearing process, check out our handy online guide and see which courses you can still apply for. You can also call our Clearing hotline on 01273 644000 which is open now, and has extended hours from 7am to 7pm on results day.

If you’ve not yet visited the University of Brighton we have Clearing open days on Saturday 17th and Tuesday 20th August. You’ll be able to take a tour of the campus where you will be studying, get advice about accommodation, take part in a Q&A with academic staff and chat to students. Find out more about visiting us.

If you’re navigating big choices and big changes, we say: stay curious, explore, and trust yourself. The best journeys don’t always follow a map.

 

Geology student rocks the judges

University of Brighton student Mary Harrow has received national recognition for her hard work and commitment to geology studies.

The second-year Geology BSc(Hons) student was one of only ten university students from around the country to receive an Institute of Quarrying (IQ) National Students Award.

The geologists-of-the-future were nominated by their universities for their “continuous hard work and passion towards their course, as well as demonstrating strong potential for a successful career in the mineral extractives industry”.

Winners received certificates acknowledging their achievement plus two years free student membership of IQ. Read More

From Brighton to Arctic Sweden

The Environmental Sciences BSc(Hons) course at Brighton attracted me because of its modular flexibility and scope. When I applied in 2014, I did not feel a strong pull in the direction of a particular field within the geosciences, but I wanted an overview understanding of the environment and how it is being influenced by humans. BSc Env Sci promised exactly that.

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Looking forward to a summer of research

I’m undertaking a six-week funded internship as part of the Santander Summer Research Scheme as a 2nd year Environmental Sciences undergraduate student at the University of Brighton. I entered university with a clear idea of what I’d like to achieve; which in the long term is to do impactful research especially relating to rivers and water issues. The advertisement for the summer research position immediately caught my attention as a fantastic opportunity to gain experience as a researcher working alongside the skilled and experienced staff from the universities Centre for Aquatic Environments. Not only does the position offer me invaluable experience which will aid in my long-term goal of undertaking a PhD, but it also expands on what I’ve been taught so far in my undergraduate modules. I felt entirely grateful and privileged to be offered the position following the application and interview process. In part I was relieved in receiving the offer as this will undoubtedly be a great step forward to furthering my academic career. Read More