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Tips on beginning university | lifestyle

Switching your life up and starting university, as well as being in a whole new city surrounded by a whole new bunch of people can be pretty daunting, and I for one would know this. Settling down and seeing university as my new 'home' was something I really struggled with and it took a lot longer time than it takes most for me to feel happy about my new life in Leeds.

But turning a negative into a positive, here are the things I've learnt along the way and would tell myself if I had the chance to go back to the start of university.

Learn your city

Not many people take their cars to uni, as you will more than likely have to pay for your parking, which limits most your travel to by foot. Walking around trying to navigate with google maps on your phone is always going to make you feel alien, whilst only staying in the places you know such as your halls is going to make you feel really trapped. Take a day out and visit the student union or look around town for where all the best clubs, restaurants and shops are! FYI. its a lot easier trying find a club at 12am after a typical freshers pres if you already know where abouts it is..

Spend time at uni

Even if you have halls off campus, try and spend as much time as you can in the first few weeks on campus so you really become localised to it. Try and learn your way around campus so when you have a completely random tutorial in room 8.07 of a building you've never heard of, it won't completely knock you.

Over the next three or so years you're going to be spending a LOT of time in the library, so its also really good to familiarise yourself with this. Find out how to use the computers there and finding everything you need on your uni log-on, as well as finding out how to locate and take out textbooks - there'll be far too much of this involved.

Make your room homely

When it comes to uni halls the rooms lean far more over to being practical rather than looking nice. My room had a bottle green carpet and lime green and blue curtains and was a mile away from my girly bedroom at home. Buying rugs in a more 'you' colour and even changing the curtains if you have the funds can really change the look of a room and make it feel a lot more like a real bedroom. And whilst it can be fun to get new bedding and decorate your new room completely different to your room at home, you might find more comfort initially to use your bedding etc that you already have at home, that way you'll feel a little less far from home.

Join in

Societies are great for joining in but for me going to an event knowing no one just wasn't going to be in anyway fun. Still, I have no doubt societies are great and that there will be one out there for you, so if you don't wanna go alone just see if a friend of flatmate will go along with you. If that really isn't your cup of tea, then just try socialising with as many people as you can (flatmates, people in your block, people in other blocks/halls, course mates) - the more people you meet the more you're likely to find your clique.

First year does count

For the majority of UK unis, first year 'doesn't count'. If you don't know what this means, it basically means that the results you get in your first year won't contribute to your degree, so you only need 40% to pass and begin second year. However in first year what you learn is likely to be the basic knowledge to your degree so if you don't learn it now you'll really struggle in second year and have to learn all that again on top of new info. And if you're considering a year abroad or a year in industry you will be judged on the grade you attained in first year.

Be you

Uni students are renowned for loving their drinking and going out, but if this isn't you then don't do it! You're probably in a city of about 20000 students, they'll be someone else who prefers what you like too :)

Try not to waste money

So many of us blow our student loans and run out of money, and this will just stop you doing things you want to do. If you're buying tickets for nights out by them in advance before the prices go up. If you want to drink do it before your night out rather than paying for drinks in clubs and if you want to eat after a night out keep a big bag of £1 oven chips in your freezer rather than paying £3 a time for them in some dirty chicken shop.

Food IS expensive, but try your best not to skimp on your money going towards food because if you aren't eating properly you're never going to feel great about yourself. Microwave meals and takeouts are expensive so try put effort into cooking your own food, or cook with flatmates if you want it to be more entertaining.

Give yourself time

There's no textbook way to settle into uni, although the majority of you will find it a walk in the park I'm sure. If you still feel a bit wobbly don't leave yourself feeling alone, invite your family and friends to visit you too help with you feeling comfortable in your new home.

Really hope this helps anyone starting uni this year, good luck with everything and make the most of your time! If you have any more tips you think will help others leave them in the comment section below so they can see them :)


  1. Great tips! I'm starting university next month, so they come in very helpful! :)
    Urban Obsessions // Vegan Food, Beauty & Lifestyle

  2. Really great tips, I think making my uni room as homely as I could really helped me to feel less home sick - this is making me miss uni!

    The Velvet Black // UK Style & Beauty Blog

  3. great post :)
    Have a nice day:)

  4. Lovely tips, I definitely agree that giving yourself time to adjust to uni life is the best way to do it- it can be really hard making the jump!

  5. Hey Lizzy, great points and totally agree. Having done an undergraduate degree (but returning uni now for a master) I particularly think- try not to waste money & do work hard. The basic knowledge is so important in Y1!

  6. This is exactly what I needed! I'm starting Uni next week and I'm really nervous. Thanks for sharing this post lovely x

    1. Aw this is so sweet of you! I'm glad to be able to help, I hope you have an amazing time! X

  7. Great post!!

  8. Great tips, so helpful for the freshers!

    Anika |

  9. Great tips! I graduated two years ago and miss uni so much :( X


  10. All of these tips will definitely make uni less daunting and more enjoyable. Wishing you a fabulous time in uni! I am sure you will do great and make some amazing friendships and have some incredible experiences along the way!

    Rae | Love from Berlin
    *Deutsch ist meine zweite Sprache, also sorry für die Rechtschreibfehler!

  11. Nice tips, sweetie♥♥

  12. REALLY NEEDED to read THIS, thank u for this,
    amazing post and blog
    Thank you for sharing this with us hun.
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  13. This is really great - thank you for the tips! So well thought out, would love more posts like this as am hoping to go back in to studying again after having a baby :D
    Just followed you on bloglovin! - I am 'elizabeth (Ice Cream Clara blog)'
    Would you like to follow each other? xx

    elizabeth | ”Ice Cream” whispers Clara | bloglovin follow for follow

  14. These tips are so good! Love this post ♥


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