Saturday, 25 April 2020

9 things you should know before starting university

things you should know before starting university or what you must know before starting university
The photograph was taken at the University of Sunderland - Sir Tom Cowie Campus at St. Peter's. 
A part of Reg Vardy building overlooking the Wearmouth Bridge.
University is nothing like school or college. University is more about being independent. For example, one of the most different things about university is that lecturers don't tell you off for missing a session or not turning up. Saying that, lecturers will mention that attendance of the overall group is low and your personal tutor will email you if you have missed too many sessions. So, here are nine things I think are important to know before starting university.


Don’t wait outside the room expecting your lecturer to come and tell you that you may come inside.


While in class be quiet! The lecturer will expect you to be quiet as soon as it’s time for the lecture. For example, if the lecture starts at 1.30PM, you should be quiet at that time. The lecturer will not tell you to shut up because it’s all about being independent. Some lecturers just get on with the session and some don't.


Registers and attendance! Lecturers do not take your mark one by one at the University of Sunderland. It is surprising because most universities still record the attendance by passing a paper around and you have to write your name down. Instead, at the University of Sunderland, the classes/rooms/lectures have a small card reader which reads your student ID or campus card. You hold it in front of the card reader for a few seconds then it beeps and says thank you! Technology is truly amazing, however, you must do this for all lectures and if you’re in the same room for two hours then you must "tap in" twice. It's so easy and saves a lot of time. 


No messing around. This is not surprising to me because university is a very ‘independent’ thing. If you don’t note your absence or you don’t turn up for a certain amount of sessions (for example, four weeks) then you will automatically be removed from the course, which is understandable unless there are exceptional circumstances.


There is a lot of help and support available. In general, I used to hear that universities don’t help you but actually that is far from the truth. From finding your work, to support, or improving your work; there is a lot of help available so ‘if you don’t ask, you don’t get’. 


Accessing your personal timetable will only work when the university has done it which they will let you know about. Don't panic if you're new and haven't received your timetable. And, if you're really worried then email your personal tutor. 


The timetable is a little hard to grasp at first but when it is explained it is very easy to understand. Don't worry about not understanding it at first. You will get used to it.


It will get hectic at times. Some times you'll have no deadlines and at other times you'll have all of the deadlines/exams at once. So, it will get hectic but don't worry!! There's support available if you need it and don't be afraid to ask. 


Take time to find your lecture rooms! If you are not aware of the university campus or the rooms, bring a map of the university so the rooms are easy to find. If you are not sure then take time to find your lecture rooms. Do not wait until five minutes before the lecture time to find the room. Also, don't be afraid to ask a member of staff who may be around. 

These are nine things that I think are important for you to know. I would also like to mention... don't be scared that you don't know anything or a certain thing before starting university- it's all part of the experience. Remember... every one starting with you is in the same boat as you! 

What do you think is important to know before starting university?

Thanks for reading!
Until next time, take care, and keep smiling.
Ramshaa Rose

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