After completing their +2 or A Levels, students are looking forward to a wonderful campus life at university. However, some students may find it difficult to adapt to changes in the learning environment, their mentality, and social network, which can indeed be a stressful experience. A smooth and successful transition to university life will greatly enhance the learning and development of students and help them adjust.
Life on Campus
A university campus is much bigger than that of a +2 or A Level college. A university student goes from place to place attending lessons, looks for reference books, and participates in extracurricular activities. It is thus very important to familiarize yourself with the new environment. Get to know the campus map before classes commence to find out the locations of facilities like academic buildings, lecture halls, libraries, hostels, and canteens. Ask others for directions.
Learn to Adapt
The major difference between higher secondary and university education is the transition from a teacher-centered teaching mode to a student-centered self-learning mode. Apart from digesting and assimilating what has been taught in class, students have to read a lot of reference books and materials. Adopting the same learning approach as at the higher secondary level will make you lag behind in performance. Do not let occasional unsatisfactory performances undermine your self-confidence. Instead, you should compare your performances in different learning areas so as to identify your strengths and improve upon your inadequacies, as well as set an attainable goal.
During the transitional period, you are encouraged to develop the skills to be an active and independent learner. Set your own learning goals, look for related reference books and articles, summarize what you have learnt and take a critical view of what the teachers said. You must get into the habit of collating newly acquired information immediately because this is essential for the internalization of knowledge. In addition, you need to cultivate collaborative partnerships, through which you can compare notes with classmates and allocate of duties based on personal strengths. If necessary, you may also consult your teachers and tutors on effective learning methods.51
The learning environment at university is more liberal and flexible than that of a +2 or A Level College. Learning is conducted under minimal supervision. Students with time management skills will adapt quickly whereas those lacking self-discipline and a learning goal will lose their bearings. The major principle of time management is to prioritize your tasks according to importance and urgency. You should keep away from tasks that are not important and not urgent to avoid wasting your time. Importantly, maintain a balance between extracurricular activities and academics. You should be mindful not to participate in too many activities or spend too much time on them, either of which may distract you from your role as a student.
University students are of different backgrounds, cultures, and regions. It is only natural that they have different aptitudes, living habits, and values. A student tends to compare his new friends with those he made in +2 or A Levels and finds himself out of tune with them, resulting in passivity and interpersonal problems. It is not advisable to confine yourself to a small social network in the new environment. You are encouraged to attend extracurricular activities and activities organized by various departments or faculties in order to meet more people. You should take the initiative to approach schoolmates. With sincerity and concern, you will find others who share the same aspirations on your path to achieving your academic goals.