22 June 2017
Your child’s first year at university is an exciting time, filled with new friends, experiences and opportunities. But while first year is a lot of fun, it’s also an important stepping stone to future study success.
Here’s why first year matters – and how to help your child get their first year at USC off to a great start.
First year is the foundation for your child’s future studies. In their first year, they will learn how to be a university student, and will start to build the academic and study skills they’ll need to complete their degree.
Encourage your child to think about first year as an opportunity to grow as a student. This includes taking advantage of first-year skills sessions and actively participating in class. First year is a big adjustment, and all new students encounter some challenges and disappointments along the way. This might include not doing as well as hoped on an assignment, or not knowing the answer when called on in class. Encourage your child to see these experiences as opportunities to reflect on their journey so far, and to think about how they might improve next time.
Learning to ask for feedback and seek help when needed are also important skills. Your child can access a range of support services and resources – encourage them to start doing this early.
Finding their feet
First year is an opportunity for your child to adjust to uni life and start building good study habits. This includes attending all lectures and classes, getting to know their way around USC systems and the library website, and settling into a study routine.
If your child isn’t used to managing their own schedule, encourage them to work on their time management skills before they get to uni. This might include keeping a diary or to-do list, or managing some of their own appointments. This helps your child build confidence and accountability, which in turn will help them navigate university.
Meeting new people
Many first-year students are nervous about meeting new people. Remind your child that their new classmates are likely to be in the same boat, and that their first-year courses will be a great way to meet people with common study interests and goals.
Your child will also be able to join student clubs or societies. Many degrees or study areas have active student associations, and there are also groups based on common interests like sport, drama, human rights, environmental causes and more. This is a great way for your child to make new friends and stay engaged with hobbies or interests they had in high school. Your child can research student clubs before Orientation, so they are ready to hit the ground running.