Advancing from high school to university is a huge step, as most of you would’ve already noticed. If you haven’t, you’ll have a sense of that soon. Why is that? University is quite different from high school, from classroom structure, the way you make friends, to the way you study.
We have identified several insider tips to aid you through your university studies while you are adjusting to the “culture shock”:
Imagine this: You are at the end of the semester. The final exams are just around the corner, but all you are familiar with is the YouTube videos you stumbled on during your “revision session”. You end up freaking out and feeling anxious, vowing that you’d start your revision earlier if you could start the semester all over again.
Well, starting your revision sooner might be one way, but according to Tim Urban in his 2016 TED talk, most of us naturally procrastinate, especially when the task is unpleasant or when we are afraid of failing the task. So, if you are one of those people, you might want to consider working consistently throughout the semester instead of passing everything on to your future self.
As an Accounting and Finance student, consistency is key in my studies for the simple reason that if I didn’t work consistently throughout the semester, I wouldn’t be able to understand the debits and credits for many different transactions or to calculate the net present values for various investment alternatives within the one-week SWOT Vac period. Even if I could, I doubt that I would enjoy the process.
So, BE CONSISTENT for the better good!
One major difference between high school and the university is that you are the only person who will monitor your progress and completion of your degree. In other words, lecturers will not remind you to do your weekly readings nor guide you thoroughly through your assignments. So, the onus is on YOU to keep track of your progress, and one of the ways you can do this more effectively is to have a study group.
Not to say that studying alone is less effective, but I personally prefer studying in groups as I often find the study sessions more fruitful. Humans need social interactions. Thus, being part of a study group enables you to study while fulfilling your basic need for social interactions.
Got a question? Ask it in the study group! You can really learn a lot from your peers when the study session is conducted efficiently.
The secret of your future is hidden in your daily routine, as the saying goes. Studying requires a high level of attention and focus. This explains why having a good study routine is crucial for your studies: it saves time and eliminates the need to plan.
For example, I also do part-time work alongside my full-time studies, leaving me with less time to study. Therefore, for every study session, I would first plan it out by setting realistic mini-goals and allocate them accordingly within the limited time. I find this effective as I would know what to expect during all my study sessions, hence enabling me to put all my effort into studying.
Everyone is different. Everyone works differently. Some people prefer working in the morning while others work best at night. It is important to find what works for you and establish your very own study routine.
Your most valuable asset is yourself. Keep your physical and mental health in check at all times. Some people argue that health is more important than grades, which I agree with the belief that staying healthy empowers someone with strength and motivation to strive for future goals.
With regards to physical health, ensure you’re always well-hydrated, eating healthily, and exercising regularly. When I first left home for my studies, I took advantage of the freedom I had with my meal options and went for lots of fast food. I soon experienced noticeable discomfort, which impacted my studies quite considerably. So, avoid doing so and maintain a healthy lifestyle!
Having a good state of mental health is essential for your wellbeing, and your wellbeing is essential for your performance in your studies. Universities are generally more demanding of students’ delivery than high schools. This often increases the stress levels of university students and possibly jeopardises their mental health. If you ever encounter this, don’t be afraid or reluctant to seek help, whether from your friends, family or counsellors.