13 college study tips

Congrats!!! You didn’t have to take the TSI (Texas Success Initiative) Assessment because your ACT scores gave you exempt status and you also don’t need to take any remedial course work.

In this post, we’ll check out some College Study Tips to help you reach your goals in college. For the first time in your life, you’ll be really independent but self-discipline is required to be successful in college.

A few more months of high school blood sweat and tears and you’ll be leaving your parents’ house. Moving into college is extremely exciting, but it can also be incredibly hectic if you’re not properly prepared.

There’s always a lot to do and only so many hours to do it. But it can definitely be a lot of fun.

By the time you have unpacked your stuff, your dorm room probably already feels a bit like home and when you open your laptop, you’ll overcome the first obstacles and find solutions to whatever may make you feel uncomfortable. See also this post about the best colleges in the state of Texas.

Tips to make your dorm move-in go smoothly

  1. Have everything ready the night before. Have all of your bags and suitcases ready to go before you go to bed. There’s nothing worse than last-minute stress in the morning, and if you’re pretty sure you have everything the night before, do your homework online, as you can miss this huge headache.
  2. Get there early. At move-in, you’ll be waiting in line at some point. The earlier you get there, the less time you’ll spend in these lines. Be warned though, people will arrive early. You can’t beat everyone, but if you get there slightly before move-in begins, you can probably avoid a lot of waiting around time.
  3. Get to your dorm first. If you beat your roommate(s) to your dorm, you’ll have the first choice on which side of the room or which furniture is yours. Depending on the room, this can make a big difference, so pray that your roommate isn’t trying to beat you too! This will definitely help you make it comfortable through your college freshman year.
  4. Consider bringing a hand truck. If you have a lot of heavy items, bringing a hand truck for moving in will be a huge help. If your college has a ton of stairs, well, there’s always the wheelchair ramps.
  5. Paper sacks and boxes are your friends. Pack up most of your miscellaneous items in paper sacks and boxes. The US Postal Service offers free boxes that you could use to carry a lot of stuff.
  6. Unpack the heavy stuff first. If you’re bringing up a hulking mini-fridge, a large bulky TV, and a huge microwave, take those to your dorm first. Heavy items are the worst to carry, and you’ll be glad you’ve got the worst done.
  7. Stay hydrated and cool. In hot areas, your college move-in is going to be exhausting and hot. Drink a lot of water and try your best to stay cool. Dress appropriately but keep in mind that hydration is key.
  8. Move everything at once. Don’t split up your unloading any more than you have to. Make as few trips to the car as possible, and do them all one after another instead of splitting them up throughout the day.
  9. Meet your RA (Resident Assistant). Introduce yourself, shake hands, and try to become a bit friendly. Your RA can be your best friend or your worst nightmare, and it’s best to start off on a good foot. Later on, making friends with your TA (teaching assistant) is also crucial!
  10. Leave some extra time. Things can (and do!) go wrong — you may realize you forgot something important, or a line might take longer than you thought. If you plan to give yourselves extra time, you’ll be more prepared to handle any unexpected bumps.
  11. Take care of odds and ends. Usually, you’ll have little things to do here and there — buying books, filling out random forms, learning all about gadgets use on campus, and so forth. Get those done, and save any receipts/forms they give you in return.
  12. Spend time with your family! You’ll have lots of time to meet people on your floor and to get to know your roommates, so spend some final quality time with your family — go out to dinner or walk around campus. It will mean a lot to them. Probably, they are the ones as well that finance your college education so a bit of gratitude and respect is appropriate, don’t you think?
  13. Learn to study independently. Much of your study time will be spent online. At high school, you had lots of teacher attention to keep you on track but those days are over. There are so many online learning obstacles and independent study is what you must learn to do.

The first weeks at your college are generally spent getting used to everything related to your new school. There’ll be lots of events and meetings before your actual classes start. Moving in is definitely exciting, but it can be a lot of stress.

Now college is waiting! Some students go to their local Texas community college or to trade school but there are also students who sign up for a college far away.

Must-do things before your first day of college

So what are some of the consequences? Making the move from being a former high school student living at home to becoming a college student living independently is a huge transition for incoming college freshmen.

In addition to the usual tasks of applying, buying school supplies, and packing, here are five tasks all new college students must do before they head off to college.

  1. Figure Out How You Will Pay For College

Too many college students simply assume that their parents will pay or that they can take out as many loans as they need until they eventually find a real job. This “deal with it later” mentality leaves students in a large amount of financial trouble after graduation. Students should develop a plan before the first day.

  1. Hang Out With High School Friends One Last Time

Despite everyone’s best intentions, high school friends usually grow apart after parting ways for separate colleges. One last party at the end of the summer gives everyone a chance to socialize one last time and say their goodbyes.

  1. Figure Out How You Will Get Around Town

Once their parents have dropped them off and returned home, college students will need a way to get around. They will either need a car and a map of the town, or they will need a bus schedule and map of bus stops. Either option is a good one.

  1. Start Studying Early

Unlike high school, failing college classes can be very costly. Smart students may want to brush up on their academics before they ever write their first college paper and taking Dual Credit Courses will help you get ahead in college as well. Plus, students given the opportunity to test out of some classes will want to do their very best on these pre-college tests.

  1. Find a Place to Keep All Your Belongings

College dorm rooms are not known for being spacious. Students with large furniture or other belonging that take up a lot of space will need to find a place to keep their things. If their parents are not saving their rooms for them, they may want to look into using self-storage units  for their belongings

While students can simply show up on the first day of classes without preparing at all, the college experience will go much more smoothly for students who prepare. The differences between your former high school life and your new life in college are huge and you better get used to it fast. It is always worth the time it takes for students to take care of the small details ahead of time so they can make the most of their college experience.

What size dorm room should you choose?

When you plan to attend a college far away from your home town, you’ll probably be filling out a housing application soon. In an application, you may have a choice about what size dorm room you’d like to live in, where you specify if you want a single, double, triple, or a quad.

Deciding your ideal room size may be a bit tough, especially if you’ve never really lived on your own before. Both small and large rooms have their advantages and disadvantages. Whatever your choice, you should visit the campus anyway before you move in and learn all about the school and the environment.

How to decide what room

Consider what type of person you are — are you introverted and do you like your own space? Then a single will be more for you. If you’re outgoing and want to have a lot of fun, then a triple or a quad will be more of your style.

Doubles typically offer a strong balance between the two — through your roommate, you can expand, but you can usually still find your privacy too. Take also the cost of tuition and fees into account. There are some pretty affordable colleges in Texas, but some academic educations come at a pretty hefty price tag!

Living in a single

  • You have the place to yourself. In a single, you don’t have to worry about not getting along with a roommate or about conflicting lifestyles — it’s your space, and you can do whatever you want with it. You can also easily isolate yourself if needed.
  • Living in a single makes it harder to meet people off the bat. At first, your roommate is your best friend, especially if you don’t really know anybody at your school beforehand.  Eventually, you will meet more people in your building, but if you want to make friends off the bat while living in a single, you’re going to have to work harder to extend yourself.
  • Singles are a bit cramped. Dorm rooms aren’t known for being large and accommodating, and when you have a single it’s going to be pretty small. There’s not a lot of room to spread out in a single. Although you have the place to yourself, you won’t be able to have a lot of friends over because you simply won’t have the room.
  • Singles are usually more expensive. Because a single is the “sought after” room, be prepared to pay more to live in a single.

Living in a double

  • Only one roommate. You have one roommate, which means you only have one person to try to meet a balance with. If you’re assigned a good roommate, things will flow pretty well. You also have a person to share opportunities with — for example, if your roommate is going out, it’s usually fine to tag along. Having a roommate opens up your social circle a bit.
  • You don’t have your “own” space. Although you’ll likely have your own sides of the room or some other designated space, you do share the room. You won’t be able to completely isolate yourself, and to some degree, you have to be accommodating for your roommate, perhaps in keeping your side of the room clean or in the times you go to bed.
  • Some privacy. Although you’ll sometimes be in the room with your roommate, you will also have your own time — perhaps when your roommate has class or when he/she goes home for the weekend.

Living in a triple or a quad

  • A bunch of roommates. Having more than one roommate means you’ll have even more opportunities to network — there will be more social outings you’ll be invited to, you’ll have an easier time meeting people, and so forth. However, living with more roommates also increases the chances that you won’t be compatible with one of them in some way (such as in cleanliness or the times you go to bed).
  • Very little solitude or privacy. Although occasionally you may have the place to yourself, chances are that someone will usually be around, especially in a quad. You probably won’t have too many weekends to yourself. Also, with multiple roommates, you won’t really be able to isolate yourself as much in your room.
  • Larger rooms are usually cheaper. If you’re trying to save money wherever you can, larger rooms are usually cheaper.

Last Updated on September 12, 2020