Are you about to enter a new phase of your life? Unsure of what steps to take next once you have been accepted into a university? Fear not, here are some tips to help you with the transition!
The movement into the university can be quite daunting. This is especially so for academic reasons. Many of you will be curious as to how tutorials, lectures, and seminars might work. Should you be preparing for your classes before you enter university? The first piece of advice we give you is to not overthink it and stress yourself out. Instead, take your time to do the following:
Get your texts early
When it comes to being a university student, you are required to be independent. This means that all the texts that you will be using in class will have to be self-sourced. As such, it is a good idea to look up the course outline for the reading list. If the school does not provide this information to you in advance, it is good to reach out to the professors and ask. In doing so, it gives you a head start, allowing you to look for the texts before they go out of stock. Additionally, try to look online for second-hand books used by previous students. This not only saves you some extra cash but could also give you more information about the texts as the previous owners could have written notes in them.
With the reading list at your fingertips, you can now gauge how heavy the module is going to be and plan accordingly. With there being so much to be done in university, it is good to do your readings beforehand. This aids in understanding during seminars and gives you the time to ingest the information being given to you.
Speak to relevant people when in doubt
Speaking to people from the university you are entering would be very beneficial. If you have any questions regarding the school, you can always drop an email to the office and clarify all doubts. When it comes to understanding more about a module, do not be afraid of dropping an email to the respective professors.
Universities also hold open houses every year which allows you to go down and see what the school is like – in terms of space and culture. This physical interaction can give you a sense of what school life would be like there. What’s more, it gives you the opportunity to ask existing students about their opinions and experiences at the school as well as any questions you have.
For example, if you are aiming for a bachelor of business administration, you can ask students currently majoring in business about what the courses are like.
Prepare for all your classes
It is never a good idea to step into a class empty-handed. As mentioned earlier, it is good to read your texts beforehand. It is good to have annotations and questions written at the side of your texts to help you better understand and keep up with what is going on in class. Having questions planned out can help set a frame for you. If a professor has not touched on a question that you have written down, it is good to voice it out and get an answer.
Similarly, it is good to prepare answers for discussion as well. We understand that the thought of speaking up can be quite nerve-wracking. As such, having annotations at the side can act as a safety net that you can use to voice out an opinion when asked. This also helps to enhance your presence in class and develop your own voice. You would sound like someone who is able to articulate your thoughts confidently when in reality, you have just prepared ahead of time!
Have good time management
When you have transitioned into university, you are no longer spoon-fed by your teachers. Instead, you are expected to be an independent student capable of making the right decisions and coping with everything that is being tasked to you well. With this being said, it is very important to understand the concept of time management.
It is a good idea to have a schedule to follow as it helps you to plan out your day as well as a checklist. This then helps set a goal and reminds you of what has to be done. One way to prepare for this would be to start planning out your weekly activities according to importance. This act can start how. It is always a good idea to start a good habit early. This makes it easier when you have entered university and would not feel so lost once all the work and new social activities come swarming at you. Learn to have rest days and days dedicated to work and study. Remember to have a good balance. As they say, “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy”.
Have everything you need
Imagine you trying to keep up with what the professor is saying, scribbling notes down as fast as you can – and your pen runs out of ink. Or your computer runs out of memory space and you can no longer take down notes. As such, it is good to check all this beforehand. Make sure that you have all the supplies you need – notebooks, pens, erasers, and whatnot. Check your computer storage too.
It is good to see what else is needed for a class other than basic necessities and the relevant texts.
We understand that this act of entering a new school with a whole new different system can be very scary. However, there is nothing to be afraid of! Take the break you need now before the semester starts. Use this time to research the relevant courses you would be taking up as well as the materials you would be needing. Always remember why you took up the course and keep that passion alive. Do not stress too much about what can happen, but instead appreciate the now and take everything in slowly. Hopefully, this gives you an idea of how to prepare for university and we wish you all the best! May you have a smooth transition and an eventful university experience.