Common Mistakes Made in the First Year of University

Here are some common mistakes often made by first year university students that you can avoid making yourself!

It can be challenging starting university life for the first time, and there are many traps that students often fall into. In this post, we’ll give you a list of some of the more common mistakes you should look to avoid, but don’t beat yourself up too much if you find yourself making any of them, as we are all subject to making mistakes. 

Throwing away your moving boxes 

Once you’ve moved in and settled into your halls or alternative first year accommodation, it can be tempting to completely declutter and get rid of everything you might not need. Whatever you do though, be sure to keep hold of your moving boxes, as these will be essential for when it comes to moving for your second year. They can also come in handy when you are transferring your belongings for any other reason!  

Leaving everything until the last minute

Despite what you might have heard, library all-nighters on the night before an essay deadline is not the best way of getting your work completed. You need to make sure you have a self-sufficient plan in place that you can follow for completing work, as your lecturers won’t be constantly reminding you about work like your school teachers might have. Self-discipline goes a long way and completing your work in advance is considerably less stressful than leaving it to the last minute. 

Not backing up your work

Student stressed because of broken laptop

Technology likes to crash and break at the worst possible times, so it’s always a good idea to back up your work whilst you are in the middle of writing it. Saving your work in multiple locations can be a good idea, and it means you can always access it. There’s nothing worse than getting towards the end of an essay and your laptop crashing, causing you to have to start again.

Sleeping through university 

Everyone has experienced sleeping through their alarm, but for some, it can become a regular occurrence at university. It’s best to not make a habit of sleeping through your lectures, as you’ll miss out on essential information and interaction time with your lecturers. Whilst you might be under no obligation to attend those lectures, at the end of the day, you are paying a lot of money to be at university, so you should really make the most of it. 

Spending your loan immediately

The moment your maintenance loan drops, it can be tempting to go all out, it’s likely you’re not used to seeing this amount of money in your bank account! As fun as it might seem to have one big spending spree, you need to learn to budget wisely, as your student loan is there to help you with living costs. There’s nothing worse than getting into your third month of university and realising you have no money for food or essentials, so remember, you need to make your loan last. 

Worrying about next year’s housing

This is a stress that almost every student goes through, but don’t worry, you won’t end up homeless! The first thing you’ll need to do is decide who you want to live with (choose wisely!). You don’t need to do this immediately, and when you have got your group, you don’t need to go for the first property you view. Be sure to go for lots of viewings and find a student house that suits your needs and suits your budget. 

Not registering with a local doctor

Going to the doctors can be daunting, especially if you’re in a new city, but it’s best to just get the registration over and done with, so that you have access if you need it. There are often medical information stands at student union fairs which can give you support when signing up to a General Practitioner (GP), but you can also walk into a GPs local to you and register there. 

Not doing the dishes!

A bad habit for many students, leaving dirty plates, dishes, and glasses to stack up and attract flies is not what you want to wake up to on a morning. You’ve likely seen or heard horror stories about the hygiene of students’ kitchens, and no one wants to live with a stack of mouldy crockery attracting pests. It’s not a fun task but washing up is a necessity. You’ll also likely feel better once it’s done. If no one can decide whose turn it is to do the dishes, one option is to create a cleaning rota, so you all know who to blame if the washing up isn’t done! 

Running out of bathroom essentials

You may not have thought it, but stolen toilet roll can be one of the biggest catalysts for Uni halls arguments. We all know there’s nothing worse than rushing to the bathroom to find that there is no roll left! To avoid these kinds of situations, it’s better to just stock up. Toilet roll is not expensive, especially if the cost is split between your entire flat, so there’s no excuse! 

Leaving food to go off

Food can go off very quickly, and you’ll likely be able to tell by the terrible smell coming from the fridge. You need to keep on top of when your food is going out of date to ensure you are not wasting money. 

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First year university mistakes to avoid