Twelve Tips for University Freshers

I'd like to start by saying congratulations to everyone who got the results they needed and are now off to university! I remember filling in my UCAS form, wondering how on earth I would get the grades to get into uni. Surprisingly, I got an unconditional for my top choice and I'm so grateful that I'm able to attend an amazing university. Starting university can be extremely daunting, even more so if you're moving to a new city and leaving home. I can't quite believe how fast my first year of university went by, as here I am, already waiting to start my second year. 

I know from experience that moving into halls and starting university can be quite scary to think about. You've no idea who anyone is, and the thought of meeting new people can be quite daunting for some people. However, you'll quickly learn how to cope on your own, and as cliché as it sounds, you're university experiences will be unlike anything else. For this post, I thought I would put together a few tips on how to make the most of your freshers week, and how to make your first year of university a little bit easier.


1. Take advantage of Freshers Fairs

During Freshers week, there will be so many events happening to help you meet new people and find out more about your chosen university. I loved visiting my freshers fair last year! There were so many different stalls, most offering a variety of freebies, such as Dominos pizza or vouchers for Nandos. There's also a sports fair and another one for clubs and societies. These are to let you know all about the different sports teams you can join, or to help you find like-minded people by joining a society.

2. If you're staying in university accommodation, make your room as homely as possible

Leaving home at 17/18 can be a scary thought, especially if you're moving to a completely different city. If you're moving into university accommodation, my main tip would be to try and decorate your bedroom, and make it feel as homely as possible. This will help you feel comfortable in your new room, and will hopefully make you feel a little bit less homesick. The best way to do this is to take plenty of photos of friends and family with you to put up around your room.

3. You do not need to buy every book on your reading list

At the start of the semester, you will be a given a list of recommended reading for each of your modules. Your first instinct will probably be to buy every book on the lists, but you really don't need too. A lot of books nowadays are online, so you can often download them as a PDF straight onto your laptop. Another option is to buy them second hand. Textbooks can cost upwards of around £30, so when you have to buy at least 12, that can become pretty pricey. Amazon always sell both new and old copies of textbooks, and your university's book shop probably do the same. My favourite site to buy textbooks last year was from abebooks.co.uk. They sell textbooks really cheap, and all of the ones that I ordered were in really good condition.

4. Check what is included in your rent/accommodation so that you don't overpack

As soon as I found out I was moving into halls, I could wait to go shopping for my new room. A lot of halls nowadays are furnished, for example, my kitchen already had all of the appliances we needed (like a toaster, kettle, etc) and my bedroom came with a duvet and pillows. Of course, you can always buy and take your own, but moving out and just university in general can be extremely expensive, so it's best to save money where you can.

5. Register with the medical centre

No matter how much of a hassle filling out the extensive questionnaire may seem, it's definitely best to register for your local medical centre. I was reluctant when I first moved to university, but I'm so glad I did. No matter how healthy you were at home, you will definitely get freshers flu if you are staying in halls. Being around so many new people, your body is bound to catch something, so it's best to be on the safe side just incase you ever need an emergency appointment.

6. You won't necessarily get along with everyone

This is even more true if you are staying in halls. When you are forced to live with various other strangers, it is pretty much a given that your personality will clash with at least one other persons. Especially when sharing your living space. But there are so many places to make new friends and meet new people at university, so if you don't get along with your flatmates, or you don't particularly like the people in one of your seminars, it's not the end of the world. Make sure you try to meet new people when you first start at university, as you never know who you'll become really good friends with.

7. Never feel pressured to like something just because everyone else seems too

When you mention freshers week, most people will automatically think of getting drunk and going out every night. For some people, that is what fresher's week really is like. But there are so many other things to do, that if drinking is not for you, you don't have to feel pressured into doing it. It wasn't later in the year that I realised I don't particularly like night clubs or drinking, and I felt like by not liking those things, I was isolating myself. But you should never make that a reason to do something you don't like. There will be so many people at university that feel the same way you do about things. Most of my friends at university don't really go out much either, but it wasn't until my second semester that I felt I had made true friends.

8. If possible, do your food shopping online

During my first year, I absolutely swore by home delivery when it came to my food shopping. When you do your food shop online, you are more likely to get the essentials and the things you know that you need. Whereas when you go walking around Tesco with a trolley, you're much more likely to buy extras just because they're on offer, or you were hungry at the time, or because they looked enticing. By shopping online, you'll probably find that you spend around £10 less than you do when you actually go to the shop. Another bonus of online shopping is the home delivery. Whenever I used to go to Tesco, I would end up struggling to get on the bus with my bags, and I used to have to walk over a bridge, which became a real pain when my bags were heavy. This way they are delivered to your door, and you only have to take them directly to your kitchen!

9. Don't be afraid to do things on your own

At university, you really do develop a true sense of independence that you probably didn't have before. There are so many opportunities at university, but not all of them will appeal to everyone. You have to get used to doing things on your own and going places by yourself, because a lot of the time, no one is going to be there to go with you. Don't be afraid to try new things and put yourself out there.

10. Don't be that person that leaves week old dirty dishes by the sink

For the sake of everyone else in your flat, please just wash your dishes. Leaving your breakfast dishes is fair enough if you're going to clean them later that day, but leaving food stuck to your plate for over a week isn't just unhygienic, it's also rude to your other flatmates. It will make your kitchen smell disgusting, and illnesses in halls are frequent enough, without your bacteria ridden week old food sitting on the side waiting to infect someone. No-one wants to be labelled the messy flatmate that everyone gets a bit frustrated with.

11. Don't leave your work until the last minute

We're all guilty of procrastinating and putting things off until later. But when you rush to finish an assignment the night before its due, it's probably not going to be as good as it could. And your marker will defintely know you've rushed it. Set yourself time aside to study and work on your essays or assignments, but also schedule yourself time off and give yourself something to look forward too. That way you'll be able to balance both university and your social life.

12. Attend your lectures

I, for one, know how it easy is to skip a 9am lecture because you'd rather have an extra hour in bed. But it's really not a good idea to miss them. A lot of universities now upload recordings of their lectures online, which makes them even easier to skip. But at the end of the day, you won't be concentrating as much if you just have your lecture playing in the background as you scroll through Facebook. Also, university is really expensive, so its better to attend your lectures and make the most of whats on offer to help you.

If you're starting university in September, good luck! Hopefully some of these tips will help you or help to give you an idea of what to expect. Your first year will fly by, and before you know it, it'll be summer again, so make sure you make the most of it!

Hey, before you go, are we friends on Bloglovin?

26 comments

  1. This is such a great post, Jade! It was like reading my own thoughts after first year :) I'm studying at the University of Edinburgh - so close to Stirling! You've got such a nice blog - keep up with the good work. I feel like we could get along well btw ;)

    I'd be happy if you would check my blog - I literally just wrote a post about 22 things I wish I knew before University. I'll be glad to hear your feedback :)

    http://thepinktraveller.com/things-know-before-university/

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    1. Thank you so much, I'm glad you could relate :) my boyfriend studies at Edinburgh, so it's really not far at all! Thank you so much lovely, I'm sure we could :) of course I'll check it out! x

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  2. I'm moving to university this September and I'm definitely going to be doing my shopping online! I recommend the "click and collect" service Asda offers if shops don't deliver to halls!
    Cloe X http://clxelouise.blogspot.com

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    1. You really should! Definitely take advantage of it then haha x

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  3. Wow, everyone needs someone as handy and helpful as you! This was such a good post! Thank you x

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    1. Aw thank you very much haha! I'm so glad you liked it! X

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  4. I don't go to Uni, but these are really good tips!! xox

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  5. Absolutely love this and your blog is beautiful too! Well done 💞

    -kimberleyjessica.blogspot.co.uk

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  6. This is such a great list and if I'd read something like this when I started University I may have even stayed!!

    www.ohsobecky.com

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    1. Oh I'm sorry to hear that you didn't enjoy university! I'm so glad you liked my post! X

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  7. Even though I'm going into my final year of uni, a lot of these tips are still helpful and apply! Great post! x

    Small, Brown & Stylish | Thrifty Fashion & DIY Blog

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    1. Thank you so much, I'm glad you found them relatable! X

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  8. A few of my bestest friends are starting uni this September so I'm definitely going to forward them this! Great post lovely X

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    1. Oh I hope they enjoy it! Hopefully some of these tips might help them x

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  9. Freshers fairs was deffo the best part haha! Xx
    http://louiselovesbeauty.blogspot.co.uk/

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    1. I absolutely loved mine haha! Thank you for reading x

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  10. Brilliant post, really great advice!

    http://theauburnagenda.com/

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    1. Thank you so much lovely! I'm glad you liked it xx

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  11. Wish I had these advices before I went to university such a good post xx Pixie www.pixieox.co

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    1. So do I haha! Thank you for reading xx

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  12. I really enjoyed reading this! Even though I'm still 2 years away from going to university haha
    Really great tips honestly xx

    Sofia | www.theglamchapter.blogspot.com

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    1. Thank you so much lovely, I'm so glad you enjoyed it xx

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  13. I really wish I went to uni I don't know why I didn't choose to

    Tasha x

    http://itsatashathing.blogspot.co.uk/

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    1. It's never too late to go to university if you decide you want too :) x

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