7 great tips to getting started

It can be quite an overwhelming experience to embark on your new life as a student. You will meet many new people and challenges, and you might move to a new city far away from family, friends and partner.

So here you have seven great tips to ensure you get the best start possible.

1) Maintain a social life

Prioritise spending time with and getting to know your fellow students. If you have just begun your studies, you can challenge yourself by talking to a new person each day.

Taking time off is essential – especially when studying. Even though it may feel conflicting, it is important to engage in social life within and outside of your studies. So make room for a social life as well, when planning your week.

2) Join a study group

Working with a study group or a study partner might provide a more fixed setting for studying, making it easier to concentrate on the task at hand, and share your experiences and thoughts with one another.

A study group will, for instance, offer you insights into how your fellow students read and interpret the curriculum.

3) Plan your time

Make a weekly schedule containing your academic and personal plans.

This might include:

  • Lectures
  • Study hours
  • Group work
  • Student job
  • Time for exercise
  • Coffee dates

Be realistic with your time and energy, and remember to make room for activities besides your studies. Many students find that having a part time job helps structure the day and week. Going to work might simultaneously offer a change of scenery and create a space that does not demand the same level of performance that comes with studying.

4) Accept the fact that things take time

Allow yourself to be new to studying, to the premises and to the experience, and do not expect to be able to get a sense of perspective straightaway.

You attend school with the purpose of learning – not to become an expert at once. Similarly, you cannot count on making friends immediately, however prioritising your fellow students and attending social events might aid you in your cause.

5) Expect challenges in the beginning

Being accepted to the education of your dreams will probably send you on cloud nine. But don’t be scared if you sometimes feel lonely or find the academic level to be hard.

Emotions are often fluctuating. One moment you might feel free as a bird and the next entirely lost. These are completely normal feelings, when venturing into something unknown and beyond your comfort zone.

6) Join social and academic networks

Sign up for a committee, an after school activity or the Friday bar at your place of study. The main cause of student drop-outs is usually found in social challenges – and not academic.

For most students, participating in social and academic networks will give you a boost of energy. And it might be liberating meeting your fellow students outside of the class room and in a setting where you do not need to compare yourself to others.

7) Remember, most students share your feelings

Remember that everyone else is just as excited and nervous as you. We all fear being excluded from the community and not be made to feel welcome in a group.

Try to seek comfort in this fact, whenever you feel lonely or insecure.

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