PDF First Year University: A Survival Guide

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Learn to recognise when you're getting burnt out, and switch to a takeaway and Netflix [if you can].

Buckle Up: Your Survival Guide to the First Year Uni Rollercoaster

It may seem like everyone is a big drinker. Some people are, but things really do quieten down after freshers' week. If you really don't want to go out, you don't have to. First Year Student, Lancaster University. With more freedom to do what you want, it's a bit of a challenge to focus on the educational side of things rather than the social — there's a fine balance that needs to be struck. Start work as soon as you get it instead of putting it off until last minute — it'll save a lot of hassle and stress, and you'll have the free time to socialise afterwards.

Don't expect to be spoon-fed anything.


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Any information you require, you must find out yourself. Don't hold back — get involved in as much as you can. The more you do, the more you get recognised, the bigger your social network becomes. Academics get to know you more. As a result, [this makes them] easier to approach — [they'll be] happy to give you help and advice if needed. First Year Student, Plymouth University.


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As soon as you don't understand something, ask! Even if it's not in that module, it will appear again and again.

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There's only so many times you can try to 'wing it'. Don't take time off at the beginning if you're sick. Try to go in everyday. If you don't want to continue, then set a goal and say [to yourself]: 'If I still don't want to stay after five weeks, then I can leave'. But stick it out for five weeks [at least]. Expert advice for students struggling with their mental health at university, including warning signs to look for, preparing for university and finding help.

Let's face it, moving in with a bunch of strangers isn't the most natural of experiences — and one uni student, Katie, knows all too well. Thus new college students are less likely to be exposed to situations they have not previously discussed. While academic advisors may not gain a lot of new information from this survival guide, the checklists could provide a useful place to begin some student discussions. As a Retention Advisor, I highly recommend this book to high school students, their parent, and even non-traditional students entering college for the first time.

Melinda Dalgarn. Review by Nadine Huyck.

The best way to make new friends in college is to take part in activities. Your college campus will have lots of events going on and there are endless opportunities to meet new people. Joining an on campus gym or club is always a good way to start. A college club or society is a group of students that meet up and take part in activities based on shared interests. You might find that there is a film club, a drama club, a history club, a physics club etc.

Most universities dedicate the first few weeks of term to fun activities and parties that take place on campus. This is intended to freshmen make new friends and feel comfortable starting in a new school. In fact, the US has more international students than any other country. If you do find yourself making friends with people from your own country, be sure to speak in English as much as possible so that you get a lot of practice in. Living in student accommodation is a great way to meet new people.

You will also mix with native English speakers on a daily basis, giving you more opportunities to get to know the language. Try to secure a place in a college dormitory or some form of student accommodation. You may be excited to start studying in the US but you should know that it will take some time to adjust to the cultural differences. If you feel that this is affecting you and making you feel angry or very sad, make an appointment with an on-campus counsellor or talk to your friends about it.

Be as open-minded as possible. Your time in the US is all about trying new things. Do you have a relative, a neighbour or a friend who has studied in the US? Contact them or get in touch with them and ask them about their experience.


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They can give you great advice about what to expect. You could end up being scammed especially when it comes to finding rented accommodation. Never exchange money until you have seen the accommodation.

Starting University - the first year's university survival guide - University of Huddersfield

Unfortunately there are a lot of people out there who like to take advantage of people from outside the US. The most important advice that we can give you is to have fun.

Studying in the US is something that many can only dream about. Be confident in yourself and you will have a lot of wonderful experiences that you will remember for the rest of your life.