How schools and colleges can prepare students for the transition to university
Every year students make the transition from school to university - and there is lots of good advice and help available for school leavers to prepare for this. I will outline five of the key things to remember in this blog.
The transition to university - five key things to remember:
1: Students will be entering an adult environment - they will be responsible for their own decisions. Unless they live at home there will be no-one to make sure they get up in time for their lectures or get their assignments done or to do their cooking, cleaning and laundry.
2: Students will have a limited budget on which to live and manage this for themselves; if they don’t know what a budget is or how to manage money, they should seek advice beforehand. Resources include the Which? University guide on budgets and the Complete University Guide on Tuition Fees.
3: Everyone else in their freshers year (first year) will be facing much the same issues and concerns and the university will be doing everything they can to help students settle in quickly and learn how to cope with the transition. Students should take advantage of all the induction sessions and tours that are on offer - as this will help them to familiarise and settle in.
4: The way a student will study at university will be quite different with fewer classes and more emphasis on self-study and planning their workload so they don’t end up having to write all their assessments at the last minute. There will be lots of advice and workshops available to help learn the study skills they need, but they need to sort this out for themselves.
5: There will be lots of societies and sports clubs on offer for students and it is a really good idea for them to sign up to any that take their fancy. This is a great way to make new friends quickly and they can have great fun discovering new interests. Most universities will have a ‘Freshers’ Fair’ where all of this is available for them to join. At the University of Chichester, our activities range from the African Caribbean society, the Harry Potter society and Korean Culture society to sports clubs in Football, Rugby, Swimming, Equestrian and much more.
Students have lots of help available at university - they just need to ask
Finally, if students start to feel overwhelmed or are struggling with any aspect of their life and studies DO encourage them to ask for help. This is not a sign of failure or weakness, in fact learning to ask for help when it is needed is a hugely valuable life-skill. There will be lots of services there to support students; whatever they are struggling with there will be someone who can help them.