Are you starting university in September?

There are lots of people out there who will try to tell you what it’s like and what to do.  I’m not going to go that far but having been a student for 7 out of the last 8 years I have a few little bits of wisdom to share with you.

Freshers week is for making friends and having fun, make the most of it, go to the bars have a few drink and meet loads of people but don’t forget who they are the next day.   While the bars and night stuff is great don’t forget about the stuff during the day too, join a club, join a sport, take up something new, carry on with something old.  This is your chance to try new things, take them, you never know what you might find.

After freshers the fun doesn’t have to stop, remember to get out and have fun as well as going to classes.

Starting classes is always daunting, especially if it’s in something completely new but most people are in the same boat.  Don’t panic if you don’t know you’re timetable before the classes start so long as you know when and where the first one is the rest will become clear, maybe.  Chances are the lecturer won’t know much more than you about the timetable.

Staff are not scary people, the vast majority are there because they want to be and because they want you to succeed.  If you don’t understand something, ask questions.  If you’re confused, ask questions.

You’ll be assigned an advisor of studies who will help you pick classes and help you through but don’t be afraid to ask other lecturers for help.

Get to know the departmental secretary, no-one knows the department better.  They are the best source of information and can do great favours for you.

A piece of advice I got from a lecturer is second year.

If you’re going to be one of those students who doesn’t turn up to classes at least turn up to the first and last.  The first is where you find out what you will learn and how it is assessed and the last is where I cram in what’s in the exam and I haven’t managed to teach yet.

It might be slightly paraphrased but the general idea is there.  I’m not saying you don’t have to go to classes, you will learn things there which you can’t learn from the books and the enthusiasm of the lecturers won’t be there.

Tutorials are great, don’t get me wrong they can be boring and may seem pointless but they are the best way to learn and you never know what questions might turn up in the exam 😉

Don’t  leave things to the last minute.  This goes for assignments and studying for exams. They are best done early, this gives you time to look over it and make the best of it. It also save a huge amount of stress the night before.

Anyway, get out and enjoy yourselves.