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Stephanie Law

Stephanie Law is a graduate of Health Sciences at the University of Queensland. Her favourite weekend visiting spot is Eat Street Northshore in Brisbane.

6 things I wish someone had told me before starting university

Starting university marks a massive change in your life's direction. I wish someone had told me these before the start of my university journey as they would have make my university life a lot smoother. Coming out from 3 years of Bachelor study feeling fresh and great, these are 6 things I wish someone had told me before I started university.

1. Preparation is important

Many universities will send out details of the course via email and will make reading lists available online weeks before courses begin.

Remember to read those as they will give you an idea of what to expect from your chosen course. Reading beforehand will benefit your future learning as it helps with understanding the lecture and gives you time to consider your perspective and opinions towards certain topics.

2. Plan ahead your enrolments

At university, we are responsible for our own studies. It is important for us to plan ahead to ensure completing all required units within permitted duration of study. You can refer to your course outline online for reference. Academic advisors or your faculty are also there to help when it comes to giving academic advice.

3. Be involve in your every coursework

I wish someone had told me before university that we should take every assessment as serious as our final examinations. Too many times people around me, including myself, had to sacrifice our grades as we were 1% or less from reaching a higher grade. This also applied to any of your tutorial participation mark.

Remember, each assignment or examination counts towards your final module grade.

4. Seize every learning opportunity

Time flies and you will be surprised how quickly six semesters passed by. Trust me, you will miss your days at university once you are out of school. Make the most of your time within your years at university, both academically and outside the curriculum to leave yourself with no regret!

The more you gain from university, the more you can apply in later life, especially to stand out when you are looking for jobs after graduation.

5. Time management

In order to meet all of your assignment deadlines while being able to enjoy university social life, it is important that we know how to manage our time at university well. Having a structured approach to manage your time is key to a successful university student.

Poor time management impacts every area of your life so I recommend learning how to plan your time, prioritise your tasks, organise your work and ways to avoid distractions and procrastination before starting university.

6. Stress management

Be mentally prepared for unexpected challenges and prepare yourself with ways to manage stress as stress builds up overtime! A general rule of thumb here is to spread work out and apply simple time management techniques to make you feel more relaxed and focused. I found creating a written work schedule and prioritising work useful as they help with maintaining a good balance in stress level.  If these tips do not help, you are always welcome to seek advice from your university’s student support services or other professionals.

Remember that it is okay to ask for professional help if you feel that you are struggling to manage it on your own.

The above tips are certainly not everything you might find challenging throughout your university life but I hope that they can give you a better picture before stepping into this new stage of your life. Embrace the experience whole heartedly as it will be some of the most fun and carefree experience and all the best with university!

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