The Good Universities Guide is a comprehensive resource for students, parents and career advisers. The guide is a resource offering information on Australian undergraduate, VET and postgraduate courses and aims to assist students in their education pathway and achieve their career goals. The Good Universities Guide is developed in conjunction with Australian students, families and educators – so their advice about university life is invaluable for guiding students in Australia, and worldwide. We’re very excited to be partnering with The Good Universities Guide and look forward to sharing their content and advice with our students in the future.
Heading into your first year of uni you’ll hear a lot of myths and clichés, but how much truth is there to them? To get to the bottom of these myths, the Good Universities Guide has created a list of the most common things you’ll hear in first year and why you shouldn’t necessarily believe them.
1. P’s get degrees
While ‘just passing’ every class will earn you a degree, it can be common for students to be complacent about their marks and not put in the extra effort. However, the satisfaction of putting in the extra effort to achieve a high distinction shouldn’t be underestimated. Keeping a high credit average certainly comes in handy if you intend to do an honours year or postgraduate study. Furthermore, high-achieving students are often eligible to receive scholarships and additional study opportunities such as industry programs, special streams and exchange opportunities. While individual subject marks don’t count for a lot once you graduate, it’s important to keep in mind the value good grades can contribute to your application when applying for jobs in the future.
2. All uni students are poor
Just because you’re studying doesn’t necessarily mean you will have to live in a run-down share house eating instant noodles for every meal. Although money can be tight whilst studying, many students manage to live quite comfortably through a mix of casual or part-time work, careful budgeting and sometimes government assistance such as Youth Allowance and Rent Assistance.
There are also plenty of thrifty ways you can save money whilst being a student to better manage your funds. Try looking for student deals on entertainment, food and shopping; riding a bike to save on petrol and public transport costs; starting your own fruit and veggie patch; frequenting markets or holding your own stall to sell old items; and shopping for vintage and recycled fashions. Just embrace the time that you’re at uni and think about your potential earnings once you come out the other end with your degree.
3. It’s okay to complete an assignment the night before it’s due
Let’s be honest, we’re all guilty of this one, but leaving your work to last minute is undoubtedly never a good idea. Our advice is to always give yourself lots of time for each assignment and make sure you allocate time to research, plan, write, edit and review. At times where you know there will be a pile-up of assignments (like the end of semester), try to get an earlier start. Leaving an assignment until the last minute is a recipe for disaster because more often than not you won’t realise how much work there is to do until you begin researching and writing (researching in itself can be very time consuming). The stress can also be a killer. If you don’t get it done in time, you will lose marks for late submission; if you do get it finished, there will always be the niggling feeling of how much better you could have done had you given it the appropriate time.
4. Uni is all theory and no practice
Many denounce uni as a waste of time, where students focus on theory and academics instead of gaining real-world experience. But the reality is that earning a degree really does give you an advantage, with many fields requiring a degree to enter and progress. Nowadays, courses tend to have a stronger focus on giving students an experience that will prepare them for the ‘real world’. For example, many courses integrate studying with internships, study tours, case studies, visits from guest lecturers working in the field and industry projects for real organisations. These opportunities will give you a real advantage when it comes to applying for a job, so be open to all of the opportunities that your university will offer you.
5. Week one lectures are useless
Many students skip the first couple of classes, assuming that no assess-able content will be covered in the first couple of weeks. But beware of this assumption because missing the first class often means missing out on important background information, details about your assignments and valuable opportunities to make friends with fellow classmates. In reality, you should aim to attend every class to get the most out of your university degree. In some cases, attendance may actually form part of your mark, and taking part in class activities will help you understand and remember the content better when it comes to exam time.
To uncover the truths behind more common university myths, check out some more of The Good Universities Guide’s articles:
- Uni myths debunked: getting in
- Uni myths debunked: mature age students
- Uni myths debunked: online and distance education
Keep an eye on our blog for more student advice and featured content from our partners. If you’re searching for student accommodation heading into your first year of university take a look at our Melbourne properties – University Square, opening in July 2018, and Infinity Place, opening in February 2019.