Skip to main navigationSkip to main content
The University of Southampton
EngineeringPostgraduate study

Shruti Verma MSc Biomedical Engineering

Current student

Shruti Verma's Photo

In addition to the expertise and guidance from lecturers throughout my project, the resources available at the University have been a great help. The access to journals is fantastic; I’m able to complete my literature review using the most up to date research.

Can you provide a brief summary of your time at Southampton?

I started at the University of Southampton in Autumn 2012 on the MEng Aeronautics and Astronautics course. Through talking to some of the lecturers, I realised my passion lay within the biomedical field, rather than the aerospace one, and so I transferred to the BEng in my second year with the intention of doing an MSc in Biomedical Engineering (what I’m doing now!) Throughout my undergraduate degree, I was an active part of two society committees (Enactus and Human Powered Submarine) and a Student Ambassador. I also volunteered with the Students’ Union as an Academic Representative for all three years which led me to successfully run for the full-time role of Vice President Education in the cross-campus elections. I took up this post in the year after I finished my undergraduate degree, before I started my MSc.

What has been the highlight of your time as a Southampton student so far?

Being selected to present my undergraduate research at the Houses of Parliament was incredible. I was the only student selected from the faculty for the University competition where we had to present our research poster. There were two of us selected to attend the Posters in Parliament event, but I was the sole representative of the University in the competition, where I was placed in the top 10 undergraduate researchers in the country.

How have you found the transition from undergraduate to postgraduate study?

Personally, I haven’t found there to be much of a jump between Undergraduate and Postgraduate study in terms of how much work there is to do (but I’ve always been a pretty hard worker!) The biggest difference, I think, is in the way that we are assessed. Undergraduate assessments are generally more directed: we’re given a problem to find a solution with a given methodology and then we write up a report to analyse its success. Whereas, I’ve found in postgraduate specific modules, more independence is expected. It’s a lot more about critical analysis and using the literature to draw your conclusions, and then present them in a variety of ways. I think this is a really good way of assessing us at this level as it is important to be able to communicate technicalities and reasoning to both an academic audience as well as the general public.

What do you enjoy most about your course?

I love that the course gives us the opportunity to develop a broad understanding of biomedical engineering as a whole, as well as allowing us to specialise into our own interests. The three compulsory modules provide a broad insight into many different areas of the field, which leaves us with five modules and our research project to specialise into a particular area, or take a range of modules to keep the breadth of learning. The course really is tailored to what each individual wants to do. I think everyone on the course this year is taking a different combination of the modules available and there are still some that not one of us is taking because there’s lots to choose from!

How have, or will, the facilities available at the University help you with your research and project work?

I’m doing a completely computational research project using MATLAB, so for me the biggest assets of the University for my project are the expertise of the lecturers and the range of journal papers we have access to through the University. The lecturers provide vital support and guidance through the project, which for me is really important as the project is such a large part of the degree and I’ve chosen a new area to me so I can learn something new! The access to journal papers is great; it helps to provide a solid background to what we’re researching. The journals provide vital context, and access to them through the University also means we can complete our literature reviews to a high quality with the most up to date research, without the need to pay to access many different journals.

What are your plans once you have completed your course?

I’m planning to pursue a PhD in the Biomedical Engineering field. The University of Southampton has given me the confidence and academic standing to apply for a PhD anywhere in the world, though I haven’t ruled out staying here. In the end, it’ll be the project and the supervisory team that will be what I base my decision on. There’s plenty of opportunity to travel the world afterwards - after all I’m only 22!

What has been your greatest achievement so far?

Working with Professor Simon Kemp, to set up and launch a brand new research journal called Meliora: International Journal of Student Sustainability Research. The aim is to provide undergraduate and postgraduate taught students with an opportunity to publish their research in a peer reviewed journal - this is a rare opportunity. We also hope to use the journal as a platform for sustainability education, as it’s not all only about the environment but also economic and social aspects. The journal is run by students for students, with the support of academics to provide support and gravitas. As Student Editor-in-Chief, I have helped set up the journal, providing the student voice from the beginning on the project team and lead the Student Editorial Board to peer-review the applications we receive.

What advice would you offer to potential students?

Study something that you really love, don’t just settle. A university degree will take up the majority of your time and so it’s important to enjoy what you’re studying. Though it was a great degree, I realised Aeronautics and Astronautics wasn’t for me because when I got up in the morning it wasn’t what I was looking forward to. The news articles that drew my attention weren’t the aerospace related ones, but the biomedical ones. I chose my dissertation topic and optional modules in Biomedical Engineering. Thankfully, this University allowed me to branch into what I really enjoyed before pursuing a masters. I think I have found the transition to postgraduate study quite easy because I’m now spending my time on a subject I am passionate about.

Share this profile Share this on Facebook Share this on Twitter Share this on Weibo
Privacy Settings