Revealed: Who works hardest

Survey shows which subjects have the most hours. Are you working harder than your mates?


It’s the age-old debate: who spends the longest working on their degrees?

Now, we have an answer. Architects are the biggest boffins around, spending almost 40 hours a week in lectures and private study.

Following the wannabe-Norman Fosters closely into the library are the vets, who typically study for 36 hours a week.

But who are the biggest slackers? Bumping along at the bottom of the table you’ll find business students.

They spend around 26 hours a week studying to become the next Alan Sugar.

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Research by the Higher Education Policy Institute and Which? suggests the average student spends 30 hours per week on his or her degree.

That’s 25% less time than the Quality Assurance Agency (the squares who monitor standards in higher education) assumes a student will spend studying.

They reckon the average student devotes 1,200 hours a year to his or her degree. The report says it’s actually 900 hours.

The study found huge variations in the number of contact hours students can expect with tutors.

Nationally, medics have around 20 hours of tutorials and lectures a week. History students, on the other hand, are looking at just eight hours of contact time.

This might not come as much surprise, but there are also wild variations in contact hours per subject depending an what uni you go to.

A student studying maths can expect to receive anywhere between 13 and 22 hours of scheduled contact time depending on which university he or she attends.

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We know we’re supposed to top up the contact hours with private study, but the average student spends just 17 hours a week working alone.

Architecture students spend around 25 hours per week studying privately, while business students take just 14 hours out of their weeks to do their homework.

The research suggests some students think they’re being short-changed.

A third of students said they might have chosen a different degree if they had known what they do now about their courses.