Everyone knows the classic things you should do to get ready for a semester of university; buy your books, register for classes and pretend like everything is ok. I’m going to let you in on a few secrets I’ve picked up over the last few years at QUT about what not to do to prepare for uni.
1. Do NOT buy all your text books at once!
This is a pro tip picked up in my first semester of uni; don’t buy all your text books at once. Wait until you’ve been to a few tutorials and lectures to see which text books actually get used, and talk to your lecturer/tutor. The cost of text books stack up really quickly, and it sucks when you spend a few hundred on them only to find out you really needed one or two. This leads me to my next point…
2. Do NOT buy new text books (when possible)!
I know you like shiny new text books and the feeling of owning them. It’s a trap. Reach out to friends and you can usually get second hand text books for your course much cheaper. This also means you can connect with someone who has already done a particular unit, and get some inside info on what it’s like.
3. Do NOT over commit!
This is something I personally struggle with; over committing. If you’re like me and always bite off more than you can chew and consistently swim in the deep end: now is the perfect time to learn how to say no.
If you’ve picked up 2 summer jobs and are working 25–40 hours a week, you will likely need to quit one of them or reduce your hours drastically if you’re planning to do 3–4 subjects this semester. The last thing you want to do during a semester at uni is get to Week 10 and burn out.
4. Do NOT worry about the coming semester during holidays!
Relax! There will be plenty of time to worry about the semester after O-week. Now is not the time to think of assessment, how bad your timetable is or the semantics of making uni, work and a social life work together. Now is the time to relax, and look forward to the coming semester.
5. Do NOT be afraid of other students!
If you’re a first year student this year or even in your final year of study, don’t be afraid to say hi to people. 9 times out of 10 they don’t know what they’re doing either, and it helps to have a face smile at you in a lecture to make it go a bit quicker. It’ll also come in handy when the inevitable group assignment starts and you already have a familiar face or two to work with.
So, do yourself a favour and
relax before going back to uni this year!