Every year, thousands of students leave their hometowns and head to university. It’s impossible not to hear stories about uni life from others: older siblings, cousins, and friends, and by the time you’re packing your bags and preparing to head out and experience your first year as a university student, your head hurts from all the stories. Even though people swear that all of their stories are true, there are a lot of myths about the first year at university, and we’re here to debunk them.
Myth: Uni life is all about parties
Reality: Well, it is true that university students get out and party much more than high school students, but that is something you want to ‘try out’ now that you’re older and living on your own. On the other hand, if you’re serious about your studies and you don’t want to fall behind, you should make a schedule and work more. There are students who make study schedules, get up early and study before classes, or study on Fridays before they go out. They also spend Sundays revising, writing papers, and keeping up with a bunch of work their professors gave them. University is not a joke, and if you want to reach your goal, you should do something other than party all the time.
Myth: The internet is just for fun
Reality: Let’s face it – we use the internet to stay in touch with our friends via social media and look at cute photos of cats. Still, the internet is full of websites that can help you be a better student. You can find useful resources in a lot of places; there are catalogues of other students’ work such as QUT past papers and study guides, and even very thorough notes you can rely on. There are websites to help you find cheap textbooks (you know how expensive that can be) but also websites to help you with citations for your papers. While cute photos and videos are great for blowing off some steam, you should also use it to thrive academically.
Myth: There will be time for extracurricular activities
Reality: Technically, it is true, but in reality, the more you wait to join a club or an organization, the less passionate you’ll be about it and it will be more difficult to cram it into your schedule. What is more, if you join the organization as a first-year student, you’ll be more likely to take up a prominent role later on or even lead it during your final year. If you wait to get involved thinking that there will be enough time, you’ll always be outshined by others who are more proactive and competitive. Besides, joining a club or an organization is a great way to meet new people who share your interests and make new friends.
Myth: You don’t have to change your work habits
Reality: If you thought that your high school study technique will get you through college, think again. While you might not have to spend as much time in class as you used to, you will have to study much, much more than before. This means that your approach will have to change drastically, especially if you had a habit of studying at night (there’s no way you’ll be able to get up for class the next morning). Studying in the morning before class, and/or immediately after your classes is a much better option. One more thing – drop that old ‘studying in bed’ habit; you won’t be able to focus. Instead, head out to the library and make yourself a studying space in your room.
Myth: Better schools will get you better jobs
Reality: This is one of the biggest myths about uni life out there. While it’s perfectly understandable that strong and ambitious performers who are in strong schools get better jobs, it doesn’t mean that strong performers at other schools won’t be able to do it. Graduating from a good school doesn’t guarantee that you’ll get a great job, but if you’re ambitious, have good grades, were involved with extracurricular activities and have a great work experience, there will be plenty of opportunities for you.
While becoming a university student can be a bit frightening and overwhelming at first, you will soon learn that it’s also a wonderful opportunity for a new beginning. You start from the bottom, in a new environment, surrounded by new people, and you’re working hard to make something on your own. It’s a fresh start everyone can embrace and work their way from, no matter how well they did in high school.