Advice from Senior Students
Faculty of Science, Mathematics
University seems extremely stressful once you leave high school but it’s not.
Figure out which assignments are due first, what readings need to be done, scheduling helps a lot!
Talk to your professors!
Don’t be scared, Brandon University professors are extremely friendly and helpful with anything.
Talk to senior students (Student Leaders).
We are not scary people, we were in your schools. Our advice or guidance might be more helpful then you think. We can help save time, money, and tears!
You made it here! Be proud. Things may seem fast at first but once you get the hang of it things will get easier.If not, there are lots of “us” around to help you out – “us” being friends, family, student leaders, and fellow classmates. We’re all in the same position.
Faculty of Science, Math
Get organized. Crazy organized.
As soon as you have the syllabus for each course, mark down on your calendar every assignment, lab, group tutorial session, reading, test, mid-term and final. Have a little pad of paper or a memo on your phone that includes the upcoming one or two things for each class, that way when you’re wondering what you need to work on, you can look and see right away what the most important stuff is. It will seem overwhelming at first, but take the time to break down your workload into smaller (and scheduled) pieces. This will help you stay on top of each class and not feel stressed when exams come around. If you can, do at least 20 hours of homework every week. At least. That is, if you want A+’s.
Try to figure out what you like and what you would enjoy doing for the rest of your life.
Don’t get too fixed up if what you realize what you like doesn’t match your current degree, the course counsellors here are amazing and will help you out.
1) Do not be afraid to talk to the professor.
This could relate to anything within class or if they had any advice for studying for the tests/exams. The professors are there to help you, and you should never feel intimidated to ask them for help or advice. Even if you are struggling in a class, asking the professor for any help on understanding what you got wrong or why a certain question did not receive full marks demonstrates to that professor that you care about your marks and the content. Professors genuinely care about their students but if you are not putting in the effort to help yourself, then they are not going to be as keen to help you whenever possible.
2) Learn time management skills as soon as possible.
Trying to juggle a social life, any job, and school work can be extremely challenging. Take any of the seminars regarding time management or ask for help from professors and fellow students on how to manage your time better. My best advice is to never forget to designate some time for yourself to relax and not to beat yourself up if you find that you spent a little too much time relaxing over the weekend rather than doing homework. You can only do the best that you can do, and sometimes that means choosing relaxing/sleep over school work. It’s what you decide to do after that decision that matters. Be gentle and realistic to yourself.
3) The school counsellors are amazing.
I have been to them frequently before and even see a counsellor frequently outside of the school to help with battling the inner demons. Stress is hard on the body, mind and soul. Recognize when you are struggling and seek help, whether that is from a professor, peer, friend, family, or counsellor. Your mental health is just as important as anything else in your life, if not more.” Heather A – Psychology
“Maintain balance in your life. Although it may seem like it now, the world–and your life–do not revolve around school. Do your homework and take pride and real interest in your studies, but also set aside time to keep your sanity in check: go for a walk, try exotic food, hit the gym, talk to a friend and catch a film, develop a new hobby, read a book for fun, join a club, try something new everyday, and smile!”
Treat it like a job.
Schedule your study time like you would appointments and meetings. Work hard mon-fri like your friends/family at work, then take the weekend to relax!
Don’t beat yourself up over one bad mark, it’s ok to do bad at times.
1. Student Services can be your best friend if you let it. My advice: let it.
2. Be prepared for the possibility that you will not be the top of your class anymore.
At university, you will end up taking classes with extremely smart people and you may start to see yourself as average. That’s okay – being average among overachievers is something to be proud of.
3. There is no shame in admitting you do not understand something the first or even the third time. Ask for help when you need it.
4. Stress/Burn out happens. Make sure to leave some time for something you enjoy.
My biggest advice has always been to attend class.
By attending class you always know where you are at in the course. I also find that it’s a good idea to ask your profs for assistance when you are struggling. Most prof are willing to help you along the way.