Natalie is a current student at Oxford College of Marketing,studying to gain her Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) Diploma in Professional Marketing.  Natalie talks about her experience so far and why she chose to study via OXCOM’s intensive weekends route:

There were many different marketing qualifications that I could have chosen; and many more ways that I could have studied them. I looked at traditional university courses, open university and online-based learning, but in the end I settled on intensive weekends, hosted at my local university by Oxford College of Marketing. It was the best decision I could have made; here’s why.

The Classroom Environment

Although one of the appeals of not taking a full-time university course was that I wouldn’t have to spend a lot of time in a classroom, I personally feel that a small amount of time spent in the classroom helps me.

With OXCOM’s intensive weekends, I go along once every module for one weekend (Saturday and Sunday 9:30am-5pm). This usually falls once every 3-4 months, so it means I am not committed to attending a classroom every week but don’t miss out on the benefits of meeting my tutor, fellow students and the unique physical learning experience.

The People

One of the things that drew me to intensive weekends was that the chance to meet new people who were in similar jobs/had similar interests to me. It’s a great feeling of community when you all meet up for the intensive weekends and you feel an added level of support.

I exchanged contact details with a handful of people I got chatting to during the last intensive weekend, one of which has even enquired about collaborating with me on a work project. We have also all been in touch to exchange tips and advice with each other, offering encouragement and support as we all work through the same module.

The Learning Style

I am the kind of person who benefits from being taught something. Although I have taught myself a lot and enjoy seeking out new things to learn, I benefit most when someone is there to talk through things with me.

With intensive weekends, you get to ask questions as you go and ask for further explanation on what is being discussed if you need it. Although you do get this with distance learning, in that you can contact your tutor or the support team to ask any questions, for me I like to be able to ask as I go.

You also then get access to all the learning materials and resources online afterwards, so you can go over and recap anything at a later point. For me, this helps me process and learn in my own way with the right balance of support and independent study.

It’s Flexible And Didn’t Ruin My Social Life

I’ve found that, although I have to block out one weekend per module to attend classes, the studying hasn’t taken over my personal life and has actually barely been noticeable.

I have been able to spend a couple of hours during work breaks or while my dinner is cooking in the evening doing the reading or working on my assignment. I have only had to spend a couple of full days (additional to the intensive weekend) on my assignment but I chose to work like this. Other people have done just one hour per day and got it all done that way. It’s a very flexible way of learning.

It’s Affordable and Payments Are Flexible

Another thing that swayed me when looking into the different courses and ways to study was the price. When student loans aren’t an option and you are funding yourself, you have to consider what will give you the most for your money.

Oxford College of Marketing’s tuition fees are very competitive and the CIM memberships assessment costs are not too bad either, making the whole course very cost effective. I don’t have to pay to commute every day/week, I have access to a large library of resources both on the OXCOM student learning site and the CIM member site and you can get discounts on any key texts you need to buy.

Studying marketing via intensive weekends with Oxford College of Marketing has been a great experience so far and I would definitely recommend it to anyone considering studying marketing.

OXCOM have study centres across the UK; find your nearest centre and learn more about the courses here. You can also call OXCOM on 01865 515 255 or email if you have any questions.