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Guide for a First-Year Student

by Nina Smith

If you are a First-Year student, you have already realized that a university is not a school. You will have to get used to the new building, countless subjects and teachers, a large study load and learn to find a common language with other students. Here are some life hacks on how to survive in your first year of college.

Cultivate Interest and Be Curious

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Even the most useless subject can become less boring if you try to find something interesting in it. Versatile knowledge broadens the horizons. You will never guess where and when they will come in handy. Then suddenly, in the future, you will unexpectedly be able to keep up a conversation about your client’s rare hobby, win him over to you, and end up with a big project for your company. You can expand your horizons of knowledge not only within the walls of the university. You can read any literature, listen to interesting lectures or podcasts, read scientific essays. You can check out a lot of exciting topics on the-Essays.com.

Stop being lazy!

It’s a bad idea to start exam preparation overnight. After a few days, you will forget what you have learned, and you will also not get enough sleep. You will feel bad and will lose concentration during the exam. The key to successful studies is to practice every day. We know that we are better at remembering information in small chunks. Break the topic down into sections and study one at a time. Make a class schedule and follow it strictly. Learn the basics of time management.

Follow this advice, and you will find that you absorb the material much better. And on the night before the exam, you will sleep peacefully and not rush about in panic, trying to learn the full course of mathematical analysis in a few hours. Write down the schedule, homework, contacts of teachers in the diary or planner. Self-organization is one of the things that saves you from overwork and forgotten things.

Practice self-control and discipline

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Discipline and the ability to force yourself to work will help you at university and in your future career. Successful people have strong control over themselves, their actions, and their emotions. Follow a schedule and practice daily, focus on one task at a time.

Get rid of distractions during class: avoid overusing social networks and the Internet – install special applications that temporarily block access to the network. Turn off all reminders and alarms on your mobile phone. Explain to your parents, friends, boyfriend, or girlfriend that you can respond later. Get the pets out of the room where you are studying.

Be prepared that teachers and senior students inadvertently intimidate with tests and sessions. Taking it to the heart is a waste of nerves. Just study hard for the semester, and your first exams will be easy for you. Even if you study on a fee basis, it is better to start with good grades so as not to miss the chance to stop paying for tuition.

Ask for more information and take notes

The student’s weapon is communication. Don’t be afraid to ask faculty and seniors about academic affairs or organizational issues. If you are interested in scientific or social life, want to know about creative circles, take an interest in the department or the dean’s office.

Don’t rely entirely on textbooks. Write down lectures, because usually on exams, they ask exactly according to the synopsis. So the teachers will be more loyal to you.

If necessary, you can ask senior students for advice on studying, borrow a synopsis or learn about various aspects of the life of the faculty, a student dormitory. Be active and inquisitive. Then you will not waste your time at the university in vain!

Follow your daily routine, eat well, and be physically active

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To be a successful student and keep your productivity at the right level, you need to keep yourself in good shape and have a lot of energy. To do this, you need to sleep 8-9 hours a day and engage in your own body. Get up early, so you have more time to study. People are more productive and focused in the morning. And in the evenings, we are more inclined to rest and put things off for the next day.

Exercise your body! Sports and an active lifestyle will give you a huge amount of energy, which will allow you to think faster and remember new information. As a result, you will have more time for pleasant things. Sports are a great way to change your activity.

1. Do not be late

To not be late, set several alarms, note how much time it takes you to get ready. Thoroughly study the route from home to the place of study. In emergencies, you can quickly get to the university. Better always try to be on time.

2. Have lunchtime

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A hungry student is an absent-minded student. It is important to eat well while studying. Drop by the university buffet. Don’t be lazy to make a small sandwich or grab some fruit. Just do not eat unhealthy foods, otherwise by the end of the 4th course, in addition to a diploma, you will also receive gastritis. In the list of 100 products for the mind, you will find something to your taste.

3. Explore the university building

Find out where all the important objects are located: the library, the reading room, the Internet cafe, the printing point, the dean’s office, the university’s administration, the trade union, the department. Also, note their work schedule. You can take a photo of the schedule and save it on your phone. This way, you will spend much less precious time on a break when you need to look into one of these places. Over time, each student becomes a little bit of a logistician.


As difficult as it is to learn, remember that the possibilities are truly endless. And also rejoice in your merits. Student years should be fun. Each of you can be a successful student, study well at the university, get high scores on tests and spend this time with benefits. But only if you want it. Do not compare yourself to others, only to yourself yesterday. Good luck!