Be prepared for uni before you start

Julie Edwards

Julie Edwards

Master of Lifelong Learning

Be prepared for uni before you start

There are many students about to leave high school and excited about the prospect of starting university in the New Year, which is great, but how many are truly prepared for this new stage in their lives? Getting into university can actually be the easy part, staying at university can be the tricky part. Here are some of my tips for students who are about to leave school and move on to university:

Tip 1: Get to know your computer

It is not sufficient to be able to switch the computer on. The ability to use ‘word’ is essential. You should know how to insert:

  • a cover page
  • footers and headers
  • page numbers
  • an auto table of contents
  • an auto list of figures
  • labels underneath images that will be presented in a list of figures
  • in-text citations and a list of references

Don’t wait until the assignments are due to learn how to do this. Universities offer free workshops to assist students. Usually, these workshops are held at the beginning of the year. However, you can prepare over the school holidays before you start university.

Tip 2: Correctly referencing

Citing Wikipedia is not acceptable, neither is ‘cut and pasting’ from a source, or changing a few words within the ‘cut and pasted’ writing. Additionally, inserting a website URL next to a sentence is not the correct way to present a reference. You need to understand how to cite sources correctly and how to present a list of references or bibliography in the required style. You need to be adaptable and have the ability to use different referencing styles. You may use Harvard or APA 6th at the moment, but it’s not unusual to need to use four styles in one semester. My son was enrolled in four subjects during a semester and each subject required the use of a different referencing style. He needed to be able to use APA 6th, MLA, Harvard and a legal referencing style. Not only did this mean he had to use different styles, he had to manage himself to remember which style to use for each assignment.

Tip 3: Time management

The ability to manage assignments, whether as part of group work or individual work, and submit assignments on time is another essential skill. Extensions for assignments are not guaranteed. As such, students need to plan out assignments to ensure that they meet the required due dates. Using a calendar, electronic or paper, will help keep to these deadlines. Most students carry a mobile phone, and as well as being a link to social media, phones have calendars and the ability to download apps that are specifically designed to work with mobile calendars. Many of these apps are free.

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Julie Edwards

Julie Edwards

Master of Lifelong Learning

Be prepared for uni before you start

There are many students about to leave high school and excited about the prospect of starting university in the New Year, which is great, but how many are truly prepared for this new stage in their lives? Getting into university can actually be the easy part, staying at university can be the tricky part. Here are some of my tips for students who are about to leave school and move on to university:

Tip 1: Get to know your computer

It is not sufficient to be able to switch the computer on. The ability to use ‘word’ is essential. You should know how to insert:

  • a cover page
  • footers and headers
  • page numbers
  • an auto table of contents
  • an auto list of figures
  • labels underneath images that will be presented in a list of figures
  • in-text citations and a list of references

Don’t wait until the assignments are due to learn how to do this. Universities offer free workshops to assist students. Usually, these workshops are held at the beginning of the year. However, you can prepare over the school holidays before you start university.

Tip 2: Correctly referencing

Citing Wikipedia is not acceptable, neither is ‘cut and pasting’ from a source, or changing a few words within the ‘cut and pasted’ writing. Additionally, inserting a website URL next to a sentence is not the correct way to present a reference. You need to understand how to cite sources correctly and how to present a list of references or bibliography in the required style. You need to be adaptable and have the ability to use different referencing styles. You may use Harvard or APA 6th at the moment, but it’s not unusual to need to use four styles in one semester. My son was enrolled in four subjects during a semester and each subject required the use of a different referencing style. He needed to be able to use APA 6th, MLA, Harvard and a legal referencing style. Not only did this mean he had to use different styles, he had to manage himself to remember which style to use for each assignment.

Tip 3: Time management

The ability to manage assignments, whether as part of group work or individual work, and submit assignments on time is another essential skill. Extensions for assignments are not guaranteed. As such, students need to plan out assignments to ensure that they meet the required due dates. Using a calendar, electronic or paper, will help keep to these deadlines. Most students carry a mobile phone, and as well as being a link to social media, phones have calendars and the ability to download apps that are specifically designed to work with mobile calendars. Many of these apps are free.

Follow us on Facebook for further tips and information.

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