What an exciting time. It’s the start of your first semester at the University of Southern Denmark (SDU). Your campus is flooded with thousands of new students from around the world who will be starting their first year at university. For many students (and their parents), transitioning to university is an exciting yet daunting experience. Questions are racking your brain: Will I fit in? How will I make new friends? Am I going to survive my crazy hard Microeconomics course? Lix sat down with SDU student, Patrick Uglebjerg, who shared five study tips to help first-year students succeed in and out of the classroom. Let’s dig in.
Lix: What is one thing about SDU that every first-year student should know?
Patrick: A unique thing that a first-year student should know is that our library is open 24/7. During exam periods, this is really useful. Additionally, it is the second-largest research library in Denmark. I suggest taking advantage of that!
Lix: What has helped you survive a tough semester?
Patrick: You have to remember to put your studies aside sometimes and just enjoy life. That can be anything from heading to the gym or going out to a bar with some friends. Just do something other than studying all the time.
Lix: What techniques do you use when studying for a big exam?
Patrick: At first, I figure out whether it’s a theoretical exam or an exam where you just have to know how to complete a given assignment. If it’s a theoretical exam, I spend a lot of time reading, looking for videos on YouTube, which can explain difficult topics, and converse with my classmates. If it’s an exam where I just have to be good at completing a given assignment, I meet with some classmates at the library and go over as many previous exams as possible.
Lix: What do you recommend to students who are struggling to make friends at a new university?
Patrick: If you’ve just moved to a new city/country, you might not know anybody. A good start is to be active in your studies. This way, you could be completing your day-to-day homework with some classmates at the university. Another good idea is to take part in university activities—join a student union or sports club. I joined a student union, and through this, I’ve met a lot of new friends and have engaged in some memorable experiences.
Lix: What is the best advice you could give a first-year student?
Patrick: Study as much as possible during your first semester and see how you do in your exams. If you get top grades and feel that you would like to have more spare time, you now know what it takes to get there. This way, you’ll have a good starting point for your semesters to come. Once you get past your first semester, you’ll know what it takes to do great in school and then you can relax a little bit and enjoy the other great activities SDU has to offer.
Remember, university isn’t just about studying hard in order to achieve one’s career goals. It’s also about making lifelong friendships and connections. So go grab university life by the horns and enjoy the ride! We are rooting for you and wishing you the best as you start your first year of university. And if you need some help organizing your studies, we’re just one click away!
Patrick Uglebjerg is studying Economics and Business Administration at SDU. In need of some more tips? Check out A Student’s Guide to Cheap and Free Things to Do in Odense, where Patrick offers up some tips on where to eat, drink, shop and be entertained in Odense on a student budget.