You’ve made it! Now here’s how to enjoy life at university.

Our current students are offering advice to the incoming first years. Next up, we have Amelia DeCairos-Parr, who tells us what she wishes she’d known at the start of the first year.

You’ve made it!

You are a university student, let that sink in. Not only have you made it to university, you have made it despite the relentless force that has attempted to stop us all in our tracks, COVID-19!

Congratulations on being accepted onto the History course, you’ve made a great choice. Not only do we have dedicated lecturers who are passionate about supporting you through your degree, they have created modules that all types of learners can engage in. Whether you like to read, listen or observe sources physically, all methods of learning are encouraged within this department and you’ll be exposed to them all.

Here are some things I wish I had known before starting first year:

  • Making mistakes is essential! Think of your first year as a big safety blanket, you are allowed to make errors, make them all. This way they can be identified by your lecturers and ironed out before your grades really start to matter.
  • Lecturers have heard it ALL before. Do not be afraid to ask questions, especially in lectures, other students might be thankful you raised your hand.
  • Get used to reading. Read academic texts, read for fun, just get good at it.
  • Remember you have been released from the constraints of A-Level learning, History at this level is about using the information available to make an informed view and showing you’re lecturers how and why you’ve reached those conclusions, don’t be afraid to have an opinion.
  • Netflix and YouTube are good for more than just procrastinating, as a visual learner, I have found some great documentaries and lectures on these platforms that have helped me visualise the period I am studying.
  • Make friends! Having people to reach out to when things are tough is important, they know what you’re going through and they tend text you back late at night. (Maybe join the History Society!)
  • Get involved, engage with the societies available, engage with your lectures, with your peers, write blogs and start your career in History today.
  • Enjoy yourself! This year is going to fly by.
No use crying over spilt milk: it’s okay to make mistakes! No one is perfect straight away. Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash

Amelia DeCairos-Parr

Second year History & Media Production student.

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