You have made it! You emerged ahead of the pack and got that all important offer to study, you conquered the maze of registration and got that confirmation of letter, you are now a student. You are on the road to conquer your life goals. This represents the start of an incredible journey which will influence the rest of your life. Now that you are here, you may notice there are deadlines, assignments, classes, seminars, weekly tasks, practicals and a whole lot more. If you are just out of school or entering the classroom after a time in the workplace, you may need some hacks to help you survive your first year of tertiary education. Here are some top tips to get your primed for the demands of campus life.
1. Start early
This can apply to so many aspects of student life, the early bird still gets the worm! When it comes to your tertiary education the concept of being on time is crucial. Start the work on your modules, tasks and assignments early, give yourself ample time to write, research and edit. Last minute all nighters may work, but they also increase your stress levels and lead to poor results. Get to lectures whether in person or online on time, punctuality shows respect to the time of your colleagues and lecturers besides arriving early to your lecture theatre will allow you to secure a prime spot!
2. Be Prepared
This adage does not only apply to boy scouts, but lecturers will also often ask you to read or complete additional tasks before a lecture. It is tempting to disregard these and simply show up for a lesson. Preparation is half the game won. Completing these tasks will allow you to maximise the learning potential in a classroom session, you will be empowered to participate in the class, provide insight and enhance your critical thinking skills.
3. Get Organised
Nothing is more frustrating that seeing a student arrive to campus or enter a virtual campus with no notebooks or pens. Notes are central to recording your thoughts, insights and learnings in a class. When reviewing your textbooks or other written materials, notes will help you recall what you have learned and provide a space for questions you can direct at a lecturer later. There are several ways to take notes and highlight your reading material to maximise your recall and make exams and assignments easier to grapple with. Ensure you have a notebook for each module. File all information as soon as you receive to ensure you can easily retrieve it when you need to.
4. Utilise your ‘spare time’
Whilst you juggle life and your studies, it is key to remember that it is not just the scheduled hours you find on your timetables that must be dedicated to studies. It is key to ensure you find time to study and review material in addition to these timetabled learning events. It is considerably more challenging for parents who are studying as well as juggling full time employment, however it is key to understand your best productivity times. Are you energised in the evenings, do you prefer marathon weekend sessions or are you more alert in the early mornings? Set aside study hours which maximise the best productive times for you. Make the most of the time you have by organising how you will spend it, on which modules you will focus and what tasks you want to accomplish. Recognise what time is leisure time, which allows you to relax, and what time is lost time which could be better managed. For example, we spend hours on our mobile devices, often doom scrolling, you can choose to use this time to engage in a truly relaxing leisure activity to feel refreshed for your study times.
5. Take time to relax.
This may sound counter productive however a tired mind struggles to learn new knowledge or recall learned knowledge. Ensure you find a balance between your study time and leisure time. Give your body and mind time to recover. Ensure your sleep habits are healthy and try to ensure you get sufficient rest.
6. Use all the resources
All STADIO students have access to a variety of resources which exist to help them succeed. Ensure you know who to contact when you need support with academic or student support matters. We offer a variety of student services from mental health support to academic support to creative outlets and social clubs. Use these resources to ensure you are supported each step of the way.
7. Remember your why.
Studying is part of our personal journey; we often have a goal in mind when we make this choice. We want that next step on our career, a promotion or a step up to the executive level. As school leavers this marks your first steps toward your dream life pursuing your passion and finding your path. It is key that we always look back to the ultimate goal to remember why we registered in the first place. Use this to motivate yourself when you feel low or frustrated.
Student life is not for everyone, may who aspire to achieve an educational goal do not even make it to registration. For those who have worked hard enough to achieve this first step, you have a responsibility to make the most of this opportunity so that you can take that legendary walk across the graduation stage. Your cap and gown is waiting for you, as are the ambitions and dreams you cherish for yourself, your family and community, all you need to do is keep on the road to success.