Whether you’re a fresher or third year, you will always start the academic year as you do the calendar. You will have every intention to stick to your goals (in this case substitute the diet for getting up for lectures) and by the time February has arrived (your first lecture) you’ve fallen off the waggon and indulged in a family size bar of chocolate (slept in until 12)
It’s hard to get into the routine of getting up early after you’ve spent your first two weeks as a student being out-all-night and asleep all day, there are many expectations of your first lectures at uni. Unfortunately, the whole year can’t be treated as freshers’ week and you will be expected to get up for lectures once it’s all over.
We’ve all been there, leaving the flat at 10 pm, assuring each other that it won’t be a heavy night, that you will have a few drinks at the SU and will be home by 12 as the 3-hour lecture at 9 AM is important and cannot be missed. Fast forward 6 hours and you’ve found yourself in a foam party at 4 am ordering in another round of drinks. (Good luck with getting up at 8).
It’s important that you do balance your time wisely, try and go out on the nights where you don’t have to be up early, if you do go out, drink water between drinks and leave at a reasonable time to get a decent amount of sleep in. Lectures really are important and you don’t want to jeopardise your degree because of a hangover, it is essential that you don’t miss your first lectures – start as you mean to go on.
Asking your more sensible classmate who is fresh out of bed to take notes for you won’t work either, nobody’s notes are as good as your own. For starters you may disagree on what is important to take down, the person may write an entire page on something you already know, and skips parts that are vital to you. That’s even if you can read it at all, everyone scribbles during lectures as they are trying to get as much information down as possible, you can usually transcribe your own mess, but not someone else’s.
Dragging yourself out of bed, as hard as it is, is better than not going at all. The walk to your lecture will wake you up and will ease your hangover. Make sure you eat breakfast before leaving and take a big bottle of water with you to keep you hydrated during the lecture. Even if you’re too tired to really focus on what the lecturer is saying, you can at least write down key points they have mentioned, then research them yourself once you are feeling more human.
There is nothing worse than hearing your classmates positively say: “That lecture was actually really important, he covered a lot it really helped me.” Whilst you have wasted the morning lying in bed wondering what happened last night. Every lecture is important and it plays an important role in your semester, lecturers often give advice on how to structure reports and assignments as well as actually teaching, which could make a huge difference to your marks. Universities are becoming a lot stricter with lectures, making some universities making lectures compulsory, while others will require an I.D tap-in, to register your attendance. Your lecturer will not be prepared to recap anything for students who cannot make the effort to turn up.
Your attitude towards lectures needs to start positively in your first semester, how you act during this important term will trend throughout the remaining three years. If you think its ok to turn up to four out of twelve lectures in your first semester, you’re wrong. Don’t make the mistakes that most Freshers make, it only provides grounding for a bad attitude within the rest of your degree, you will not be able to miss lectures in your second and third year, this isn’t school, if you don’t put in the work and turn up for lectures they will not be afraid to kick you out of university.
Not only does your attitude towards lectures need to start positively, but also your relationship with lecturers giving them. Lecturers, without realising, remember students and associate them with their Student ID numbers. They will unconsciously reward higher grades to the students who are hard working and are an active member of a class, they aren’t going to remember the person who turns up ten minutes late and falls asleep on their desk, and even if they do, it will be for all the wrong reasons.
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