New to the University

Transitioning to university is a new challenge. Learn how to become a successful student and what support is available for you at university.

Once you realise what the expectations of university students are, you will find it much easier to study. After all, success at university is not necessarily determined by how much you know, but how well you can demonstrate your knowledge.

Below are a few tips to help you prepare for you first year of university.

Getting the best start

Preparation is key to getting a great start to the trimester. You can prepare for your first trimester in a couple of practical ways:

  • You can find out information about each of your university courses before the first lecture. General information about assessments, lecture times, and expected workload can be found on the Course Finder.
  • Once you get your student log-in details, log on to Blackboard and see what information your lecturer has put up about the course. Read the course outline; ready yourself for what is going to be covered in the course.

Organise your time

Now that you’ve got a head start to your courses, you should create a study timetable. Put the lecture schedule into your calendar or diary and plan your next few weeks around these. Work out how long it will take you to do each task and count backwards.

University has lots of unstructured time and this can lead you to think that you have more time than you really have. Try to work on this basic principle: one hour of class time needs two hours additional study. Get into a routine and stick to it.

If you want to make a realistic schedule that allows you to manage your study, personal and work commitments, make an appointment with one of our learning advisers.

Continuous improvement

Everyone needs to learn to study effectively and write well. There are a couple of strategies we recommend students apply to improve their study skills.

  • Take note of tutor feedback. When you get your first assignments back, read the feedback given to you by your markers. Think how you might use these tips in your future assignments. Your tutor will also be happy to talk you through how to improve your writing.
  • Ask for advice. To improve your study skills, you could attend a Student Learning workshop. If you would like help with a particular element of your studies, such as an assignment you’re working on, you can make an appointment with one of our learning advisers.
  • Remember: no one starts off as a perfect student. We all learn and develop our study skills over the course of our degree. You will learn strategies that work for you over time.