The start to the new academic year is just around the corner and now is the perfect time to get started on preparing for the new semester. We’ve put together five tips to help you prepare for the academic year.
1. Browse through course guides
Your subjects’ course guides will give you an idea of what learning materials (such as textbooks, folders, software and equipment) you will need, so it’s a good idea to have a quick read through these before the start of semester. Course guides will also outline what you will learn throughout the semester, the types of classes you will participate in and the assessment items for the course.
2. Start looking through your textbooks
If your subjects require textbooks, try to source these before the semester begins. This will help you beat the queues at the university bookshop in the first week back or allow plenty of time for delivery if you buy your books online. Once you have your textbooks, why not do some reading? This will give you a head start on the content you will cover during the semester and make it easier to follow along with new topics once classes go back.
3. Organize your accommodation
If you’ve just arrived at school, or are looking to move from your current accommodation, it is best to organize your living situation before school starts. You don’t want to feel stressed leading into the first week of semester. It will be easier to organize all your accommodation needs while you have some extra time on your hands, rather than trying to plan and organize things around classes and assessment. If you’ve already found a place to live, you may consider things like furniture or appliances you need to buy, how to get to around (is there public transport close or will you need access to a car?) or how will you budget for the upcoming semester and costs such as rent payments, utility bills, groceries and transport.
4. Attend First Week Events
In the lead up to the start of semester, you’ll find that institutions host a variety of events to help students prepare for the year ahead — particularly if you’re a new student. Most of these events occur during Orientation Week (O-Week), which usually takes place the week before classes begin. Common events and activities include campus tours, study skills workshops and opportunities to sign up to student clubs and societies. There will also be a variety of information sessions, including tours of the library, help for international students and information about student services. You can also expect a range of social activities that encourage students to meet new people and make friends.
5. Explore Hybrid Options Across Campus and Off-Campus
Many students say that having a virtual option for office hours, student support services and courses is helpful to balancing their schedules and conflicting priorities. However, most students also missed interacting with faculty and their peers. In order to best serve the diverse needs of students, schools should explore providing hybrid options for students to ensure that students are able to be successful.