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Solent Unviersity Southampton logo

Moving from college to university can be a daunting prospect. University might be the first time you've really experienced independent living, whether that means you're living away from home or not. With this in mind, we thought it would be helpful if we gave you some guidance about making the transition from further education and sixth form to university.

The major difference between college and university is that you will be expected to rely less on the teaching staff and more on yourself. This mean you must take full responsibility for your study.

Although tutors and lecturers are there to help you, the emphasis is on them getting you to understand a subject for yourself. This means that you'll have to become very good at managing your time.

While it's likely that you will have fewer classes and lectures to attend than you do at FE or sixth form, this does NOT mean you'll have less work. There is an expectation at university that you will be undertaking a lot of individual study and background reading in the time when you are not in classes or lectures, and it's important that you take this on board from the start.


At university you'll often be given long periods of time to complete assignments, sometimes as much as 12 weeks.

Try not to fall into the trap of leaving assignments to the last minute or simply forgetting about them until the week before they're due to be handed in.

The idea behind being given this amount of time is to enable you to read up on the subject, research and then have plenty of time to draft and redraft the assignment until you're happy with it. Last minute panics are never fun, so try and avoid them.

When the responsibility for managing your time falls to you, you need to find the right balance between work, study and socialising. This can be difficult, but it's important.

While you should be studying hard, you'll need to take a break from time to time. Socialising is an important part of student life - meeting new people and making new friends will help you settle in to your new student life, so make some time for it.

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