Tips and advice for new students at UL

By Nadine Kimak

Sometimes your life can be a lot easier if you get a tip or advice from someone. Especially as a new student at UL. That’s why I thought about a couple of tips and advice and maybe I can help you solve a problem or answer a question.

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  1. Just ask!

If you are not sure where to go, where your room is located, where the next restaurant is or anything else. Just ask!

People at UL are mostly really nice and helpful. They will tell you where to go or help you use the printer. If you just ask a student or person you see on campus, they will probably help you. And most of the time there will always be someone around campus. So don’t be shy.

  1. Look at the website

If you have specific question you can try the UL website or the website for the Students Union.

On these websites you will find details about your studies, Clubs & Societies and so much more. Just open the website and have a look. It might be really helpful.

  1. Join a Club or Society

You are new on campus and you want to find some other students with similar interests?

Just join a Club or Society. There are over 70 active Clubs & Societies at UL such as Athletics, Basketball, Krav Maga, Rowing, WindSports, Anime and Manga, Dance UL, Games, International Society and many more.

When you join a Club or Society it is guaranteed that you will meet new people and have a lot of fun.

  1. Find your balance

I know that your studies always have priority and that’s right. But in my opinion a good balance between studying and having fun is important, too. Enjoy your life as a student at UL. Go out, meet friends or join a club or society. It is important to sometimes get you mind off of your studies and assignments. This balance will get you a good break and afterwards you can focus even more. But always take a break.

  1. Don’t be frustrated.

I know that UL has a big campus and a lot of different buildings. And especially at the beginning it takes a little bit of time to get used to it. But don’t be too frustrated. With a little bit of practice or guidance in the first couple of weeks you will get the hang of it. Also in the orientation week you will get a campus tour and they tell you about the structure and systems of the buildings.

 

All in all, just enjoy the time at UL. And somehow you will figure everything, with some help or without, doesn’t matter.

nadineNadine is an Erasmus student from Germany. She is studying Social Science in Limerick for two semesters. She loves to work with people, do sports and explore Ireland.

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Tips on organising assignments and mid-term stress

By Nadine Kimak

During your study period at the University of Limerick you will have to do several assignments, presentations, tests and exams. They are all spread out during your semester. In my case I have to write blogs every second week, three group projects and some essays and exams. Unfortunately a lot of these assignments were scheduled in the mid-term. Last week. That means a lot of stress because you have to go to your lectures, meet with your groups and then work on your essays. But don’t worry, somehow you make everything work.

So I have some tips and advice, which helped me organizing my assignments and getting everything ready on time.

  1. Start early enough.

I know that’s hard and I always have to remind me on that. But it will make your life so much easier. If you have a break between lectures and you don’t know what to do, just sit down and start researching for some assignments.

  1. nadineWrite an assignment plan.

For example, the plan to the left. You can see in which week you have to submit an assignment. The best thing about this plan is that you can cross out the things you already finished. So little by little there will be less assignments on your plan.

  1. Ask for help.

Don’t be scared to ask questions. The lecturers don’t expect you to be perfect and know everything. If you are not sure just ask them. You don’t want to ask them in person? Nor problem, just write an email.

And you can also talk to other students in your module or study program.

  1. Get out of your room.

I know that when you start writing an essay the time flies by and you sit on your laptop for hours. Get out of your room. Walk around your neighborhood, do some sports or just do anything. Because your brain sometimes needs a little break.

 

Ok I don’t want to scare you. It sometimes just sounds a lot. If you start early and take your time, you will not have any stress with your assignments. Just believe in yourself and not put so much pressure on yourself. I had a rough week but I did it. And when I submitted my essays today, I was really proud of myself. And you can do that, too.

nadineNadine is an Erasmus student from Germany. She is studying Social Science in Limerick for two semesters. She loves to work with people, do sports and explore Ireland.

How to make the most of those 50 minutes!

By Ciarán O’Sullivan, 1st year Economics & Sociology at UL.

Sometimes I find it quite challenging to fully concentrate in lectures. In some I will be completely clued in to what my lecturer is talking about. Then in other lectures I will entirely zone out because they may be speaking in a monotone voice or I just can’t focus. I have thought long and hard about what I can do to make the most of my lectures. Here’s a few tips:

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  1. Stay hydrated

    We always hear the slogan “drink plenty of water” but do we really know what for? You might have heard before that over 70% of our bodies consist of water and that our brain is approximately 85% water. Water is essential for our existence for a variety of reasons but I’m just going to talk about why it can help us stay awake in lectures. Our brains have no way of storing water. If you are losing more water than you are replacing because you are not drinking enough then you will become dehydrated. This will affect your brain productivity. Water provides our brains the electrical energy for all its brain functions such as thought and memory processes. You will be more focused and think faster when your brain is operating on a full reserve of water. Water is also vitally important for not only delivering nutrients to the brain but for removing toxins as well. This will all run more efficiently if you are fully hydrated resulting in better concentration and mental alertness.

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  2. Spotlight your lecturer

    There’s a term that has been drilled into me a number of times in the past and it’s called ‘human spotlighting’. Basically what this means is that you have to think of yourself as a spotlight and your lecturer is the human who you have to spotlight. I know you might think it’s a bit of a stupid idea but if you find yourself getting distracted by people who are arriving in late to a lecture. Or you can’t help but stealing a glance at some people who are having a chat behind you, remind yourself quickly that you are spotlighting the lecturer. That way it will bring your focus back to what’s important. Give it a go, it helps me a lot but you have to continuously remind yourself.

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  3. Put your phone away

    This is one thing I struggle with the most. I am an absolute divil for whipping out my phone and seeing if I’m after getting an ole text or email. Once you whip out that phone and start scrolling through your Facebook newsfeed, you might have missed something valuable that was said. It’s only 50 minutes, the phone will still be there at the end of it, those notifications aren’t going anywhere!

    hqdefault4. Sit close to the front

    I say this because you will be more likely to engage with what your lecturer is saying, not because you won’t be cool if you sit in the back row! Some of the lecture halls are massive and if you’re sitting in the back rows you will just about be able to make out your lecturers facial expressions. If you’re in close proximity to them you will be more inclined to fully focus on them and take in what they are saying. Also I’ve found that in some of the larger lecture halls if the mic isn’t properly fixed to the lecturer’s top it can be hard to make out what they’re saying. So if you are sitting up the front you will more likely be able to hear everything that’s being said rather than straining your ears to listen to them if you are way up the back.

    hush02235. Get some sleep

    Right lads so we are in college and we are here to learn just as much as we are here to have a good time and enjoy ourselves. I love a good session, I’m always up for a few drinks and a good night out. Saying that, if I have to be up at 8 o clock in the morning for a lecture at 9 I will probably not go out because personally I don’t think it’s worth it. The American National Sleep Foundation recommends for 18-25 year olds to get 7-9 hours of sleep per night.
    Why is it important to get a good nights sleep? Lack of sleep affects you in so many different ways. It slows down your thought processes, impairs your memory and makes learning difficult. It’s more difficult to concentrate, focus and make decisions when you are sleep deprived. Therefore you won’t be able to take in new information and cannot learn efficiently. Going to a lecture absolutely wrecked tired will probably be of no benefit to you what so ever as the probability of you learning anything is very low.

    These are my five reminders to make the most out of my fifty minute lectures. If you’re struggling to concentrate in your lectures I hope some of what I’ve talked about will help you too.

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Ciarán O’Sullivan is a first year undergraduate student studying for his BA in Arts of Economics and Sociology at the University of Limerick. He is 20 years old and is a proud Cork man. You can follow him on Instagram.

Erasmus and Coop tips

By Tom Wright

I am writing from the perspective of going to Erasmus. I hear lots of fantastic stories about Erasmus and how life-changing and great it is. On the other hand one hears nothing about actually getting there and what is involved in organizing Erasmus and Coop. I would like to use this blog to give some tips and reflect on my experience so far.

So far my experience has been a mixed bag. The overall message is that you get out what you put in. The people at the Coop of office and Erasmus office are very helpful and it is definitely worth approaching them with ANY questions you might have. The more informed you are, the better your choice will be. That’s the first tip. Inform yourself well in advance of the deadline.

Once I started researching possible universities and jobs for Coop I noticed that the amount of documentation required is dauntingly tall. Its not something to be afraid of as its all explained at some stage through emails or meetings. My second tip is to attend all the meetings. It goes back to tip, the more informed you are the easier it will be for you.