Disclaimer: I don’t mean to discredit the posts that have these suggestions in them… However, I know that for people going into first year university, it can be stressful seeing pages and pages of “must-dos” and feeling like you have to do them all. As always, different things work for different people!
Talking to Profs
Getting to know profs personally. If you don’t feel comfortable talking to profs personally, don’t feel like you have to. In upper years, it can be really valuable to know profs for recommendations, etc. but in first year this is less important. Profs also don’t usually mark your work in first year, so you don’t need to suck up to them for good grades.
Going to office hours every week. Going to office hours can be very valuable if you have questions about the course or an assignments. However, I see a lot of posts telling students to go every week even if they don’t have a question. You don’t need to do this unless you want to! Often times, profs will even request that you talk to your TA before them.
Emailing the prof if you miss class. Unless you go to a very small school, the prof is not going to notice if you miss class. You don’t need to email them telling them why you were absent, you can just go to a different section of the lecture or get the notes from someone. (If you have labs/tutorials/seminars, the same does not apply!! Email your TA.)
Studying and Grades
Starting to study for tests six weeks in advance. This is one piece of advice that always baffles me. The semester is only 12 weeks long (usually), so if you have a quiz in week 6, you can’t start studying for it much before week 4 or 5. Also, there is no way you will retain the finer details of things if you learned them 6 weeks before writing the test.
Guaranteeing a 4.0. I see a ton of posts telling students how to guarantee a 4.0 average or straight As. But honestly, as much as you do all of the readings and go to lectures and follow all of the studyblr advice out there, you can still get a TA who won’t give any mark higher than an 80. Just try your best and know that even though getting high marks is great, it is not the only indicator of success in uni.
Sitting in the front of the class. This is not a necessity. A lot of people post that if the prof can see your face and remember you, you will get better grades. However, in first year, the prof doesn’t mark your papers usually and even if they did, your paper doesn’t have a photo of you on it. Also, they teach so many classes I doubt they just naturally remember the first three rows of each one and no one else. Just sit where you are comfortable and can pay attention and see, and you will do fine.
Choosing your major in high school or based on what job you think you will get. If you think you want to major in something and then it turns out you hate it, that is fine! Your major should be a subject you are passionate about and can get good grades in, not something that you chose in high school or will “guarantee” you a good job (although, its also okay if your major is all of the above).
Taking full notes on a topic before the lecture. If you are going to the lecture with a ton of info already, it is easier to get distracted or to feel like you don’t need the lectures at all. Instead, take notes in the lecture and then supplement them with notes from readings or bonus material rather than the opposite way.
Buying textbooks online. I definitely think that buying textbooks online can be a good idea, but sometimes it is just easier to buy them from the bookstore. For example, if you are not sure if a site is legit/the book will come in time/its the right edition, etc. it might just be safer to get it in person or buy it used on campus from an upper year. (Remember, you can probably sell it next year!)
Buying old editions of textbooks. If you have the two books side by side and can tell that they are very similar, go for it. But often times, two different editions are totally different and can just mess you up. Science and math books often have different practice questions, and even in social sciences and humanities, the content can change drastically in one edition.
Buying extra storage and furnishing for your dorm. Make sure you do a virtual room tour or talk to someone about the layout before you buy a ton of storage. Most dorm rooms that I have been in have a ton of storage (mine has a closet, a huge desk, shelves to the ceiling, a dresser, and cabinets for extra storage). You don’t want to show up with way too much stuff.
Keeping 1000 things in your backpack. If you live on campus, you don’t actually need to carry every single thing on earth in your bag. It will get annoying carrying around a heavy backpack while walking. Unless you are going to the library for a huge study sesh or can’t make it back to your room all day, pack lightly!
Avoiding wearing “freshman clothes”.No one cares what you are wearing. People often wear pajamas or just track pants and a baggy t-shirt to class or the caf. If you like dressing up, that’s great! But don’t feel like certain clothes are off limits.
Living at home meaning you aren’t independent. Posts that look down upon living at home or going to your home university are garbage posts in my opinion. Being able to live away from home is a privilege, and many people are not financially, physically, or emotionally able to do that. If you are living at home, do not feel bad about it. You are still an adult and you are still independent.
Hope this helps reduce some rising freshman anxiety! And remember, if you do want to follow any of the original tips, that is okay too. :)
To the person targeting every single toplock writer on AO3, please stop. First off, your approach needs work. You sound perverted and it’s uncomfortable. Second, you’re being greedy. There’s literally no variety on the AO3 feed anymore. If you want more top John, all you have to do is go on the Sherlock Holmes/John Watson tag. We do not need to flip the script on every single toplock fic we write just to make you happy. If you want perverted, rapey Top John, write it yourself.
To all the writers who have been approached by this person asking for you to write your exact same story except with top John, realize that this person has done this several times. In fact, their messages are often vile, explicit and overly-detailed. They will say things like “Oh bb! I loved your possessive, angry Sherlock! I would love to see a top John who is angry and possessive and a smol, defenseless Sherlock.” Followed by a rapey scenario and an offer to pay you for it. If you say yes, that’s your prerogative, but fair warning.
Suppose there is a spirit in your home
that has been causing trouble, and you need to deal with it directly.
This is easily done. You will just need a little prep work ahead of
First gather a few offerings. Any
alcohol, fresh water, any food (especially unprocessed food),
incense, candles, or even a cool object or trinket will do.
in case things go wrong, gather some basic banishing tools. I use
flying devil oil and salt.
it makes you feel better, wear protective amulets.
you require it, also bring your divination tools to communicate with
you feel fully prepared to contact this spirit, go to where the
activity is highest. This could be where you sense its presence the
most, or where the most activity occurs.
a call. I suggest, “Spirit who lives in my home and has done
[specific action], I wish to speak with you. Come to me now.”
the spirit appears you will likely gain an image of it in your
imagination. This could be its actual appearance or it could be
something else, like an animal or abstract shape. Simply tell it what
you need to tell it.
may live here, but you need to stop doing [undesired action].”
may not live here any longer. I am inviting you to leave now.”
exchange for your improved behavior I would like to give you this toy
box, with things you can play with any time.”
exchange for these changes, I would like to offer you to partake in
my weekly offerings.”
is not a full article on spirit communication [check out this one for
some more details]. So I am not going to go over how to detect the
spirit’s responses. If you are going to allow the spirit to continue
living in your home, ask it for a name to call it by. This way you
can more easily communicate in the future.
the spirit is noncompliant or becomes aggressive, a banishing may be
This is for the anon who was feeling a bit let-down by their AS level biology mark, and asked how I revised. Prepare for an essay…
First off, a D isn’t far off a C, especially considering the
harsh marking this year and the fact that you may have just had an off-day.
There is plenty of scope to make up marks next year in your A2, and in
your re-sit. Ask your teachers to help you do some UMS calculations to
see how far you are off each grade. I had
similar results in my AS year and easily made it up with practicals and
whatnot. It sounds like you worked really hard, and the first thing you
need to do is recognise that; I’m certainly proud of you!
However, if you want my
advice (as you probably do because you, erm, asked for it), this is what I
would recommend you do from here on in. This is because I learn by writing; actually
producing words in my own format, repetitively, then reading my own materials.
It’s a lot of work, and I have no idea if it’ll work for you, but it was worth
it for me. I got a high A in the end.
~ go through the specification for your exam board. Write it out in your
own words. Know what you need to know, inside out.
~ divide the spec into understandable chunks - your textbook
will help with this e.g. “genetics”. For each section, RE-CREATE all the
following materials, (using your pre-existing notes and extra textbooks if you
~ baseline, detailed notes. Typed or handwritten, whatever you prefer.
Think of it as writing a textbook, for you. Explain everything to a
depth that someone at GCSE could understand it. Add photos, diagrams,
highlighted words - anything that helps.
Spend time on these, as everything else kinda depends on them.
~ quiz. Every fact you
have written in your baselines notes, write a question for. On a separate
sheet, write the answers out in full (these are great for bus journeys).
For example, your notes might say “human somatic cells have 46
chromosomes, organised into 23 pairs.”
Your quiz would ask, “How many chromosomes does a human somatic cell
have, and how are they organised?” Your
answer sheet would read the same as your notes, “human somatic cells have 46
chromosomes, organised into 23 pairs.” (See
what I mean about repetition now?!)
your specification notes and baselines notes side-by-side. Create revision cards by withdrawing the
knowledge that the spec asks for, from your baselines notes. Don’t bother writing full sentences or even
words; abbreviation like “ind.” for “individual” are handy. Your brain still reads individual, which is
the main thing; but it also sees a much smaller section of writing and thinks “woohoo!
Achievable.” Use different colour pens,
different colour cards for each spec section; again, whatever helps you. (Wilkos is a great place to shop for revision
cards, and here in Exeter they do 10% student discount!)
all of the above for every section. That
will cement FACTS into your mind. Facts
are important, but unfortunately at A Level it’s all about the
application. Play the game. Learn how to pass an exam, by doing the
to find past exam questions organised into topics. Depending on your exam board
(and how helpful your school is), topic question packs may be very easy or very
hard to find. If so, do the steps below
using those question packs. If not, just
do what I’ve written below.
print off three copies of each past paper you can find (if your exam board is really
new, go back to the old spec and use their papers; just be aware of spec
differences), and one copy of each mark scheme.
use the mark scheme to answer each question to your fullest capability. Write more than you need to. You literally have all the answers in front
of you. Think WHY the answer is the
answer; DON’T just copy the mark-scheme.
If you don’t understand anything, consult all your materials (including quizzes),
and then ask your teacher for some help in a break time or at the end of
the SAME exam paper, using just your notes and revision cards but no mark
scheme. Mark it using your paper copy and
the mark scheme if you still need it.
Write out model answers if your actual answer was anything but.
do your last copy of the same paper, using just your memory. Mark it and write out the model answers. If you don’t feel like you know the paper
inside out, repeat whichever step you like.
you did the above using topic question packs, repeat it using the actual mixed
up exam papers.
not gonna lie, that is a huge amount of work.
The most important final step is: DON’T follow my advice unless you
think it would be helpful!! I have
friends who only learn things through reading it out loud, recording themselves
saying it and listening back – writing does nothing for them, and the above
would be a waste of time. Only you know
how you learn best, and if you’re not sure there are plenty of time-wasting
quizzes on the internet to find out.
environmentalist caveat, please don’t use more paper than you need. Try printing two pages to a sheet, or
double-sided, and recycling anything you don’t need!)
there’s anything you don’t understand, or if I haven’t explained anything quite
right, please get back to me. As I said,
I’m not good with this account but I’ll try to get back to you. If anyone has any other tips, feel free to
send them in!
wish you – and everyone who reads this – all the best in your studies :)
To say you were in an unexpected situation would be an understatement.
You had been able to get to the nearest town within a day, somehow convincing a local to let you use their phone, though you had a sneaking suspicion the bit of cash you had pulled out looking for the contact info you needed had done most of the work for you.
The story was originally going to stop at chapter 8 when we were talking about the plot, and because of jerks who were hassling her for how popular the story was (which was stressing her out) - she was gunna wrap it up and you wouldn’t have had anymore.
She decided to write more FOR FUN and because her nice fans were so awesome. Any chapter you get from chapter 9 on is a favor she’s doing you, not something you are owed.
Taylor’s REAL LIFE remains more important. She has a job now that she desperately needed and needs to keep, and she has commissions and original stories and other things she wants to work on. What YOU want her to work on does not matter unless she asks for your preference.
DO NOT message an author/artist with rude “encouragement” to work on the story you like - it makes you an asshat and it REDUCES motivation to do the thing because who wants to make assholes happy? Fuck off and wait. There are plenty of other fanfics to read in the meantime.
You want to ENCOURAGE an author to work on a story? Send them messages about how much you liked it, your favorite bit, or draw fan art of the story. But know that doing one of those things does not ENTITLE you to it. They could never update it again and you would not have been wronged, because it is a free thing that they are GIVING to you.
Same goes for @miraculer / @caprette and her fic Boutique, which she has clearly said she has lost motivation for and will probably not be continuing. Sometimes that happens. Deal. You aren’t entitled to shit. If you want new content that badly GO WRITE OR DRAW SOME. If you can’t do that, sit the fuck down and be patient.
hi ..! I'm a senior in university (my 3rd year which was supposed to be my last year) but i failed some modules and i will be studying them next year . I want to get good marks and get my bachelors with a good degree but my grades aren't good at all and i'm afraid i will stay another year in uni to re take my failed classes. I want to be a good student but i feel to late for that :/
Hi! It is never too late to start being a better and more efficient student. You’ve already taken the first step of recognising that you need to work a little harder to improve your successes. Even though you’ve failed them before that shouldn’t deter you! You’ve already got some knowledge of the course so that can only be useful. Have a read through this reply I did a while ago on a similar topic! Use not wanting to extend your time at uni as motivation to study hard and pass the classes. Don’t be afraid to ask for help if you need it. Tutors or professors are usually willing to help you if you’re courteous and follow their office hours, etc. Hope that helps. Best of luck with your studies xx