The Transition from Secondary School to College
by Sean Boyer
Get ready, you’re about to experience the most exciting years of your life! From new friends to new classes, many aspects of your life will change once you settle into your new nest. It may take a few weeks to fully adjust, but you’ll be fighting for the cherry and white before you know it! Keep reading to learn about the biggest changes you’ll encounter when transitioning to college and some tips on how to make a smooth transition.
Your level of independence is about to rise from a 3-5 to a full 10! You will no longer have your parents telling you what to do, cooking your meals, or encouraging you to complete your schoolwork. You will be faced with many decisions throughout your day. Should I skip my 8 am class? Should I go to an Eagles game the night before my English midterm? Should I spend another $5 on a caramel macchiato from Saxby’s? The caramel macchiato answer is always “Yes” for me!
You’re going to be living in an exciting city with so many fun things to do! Try to make sure you have a good balance of school work and fun. There are going to be a lot of interesting things happening on campus and in the city. Remember, you’re at Temple to receive a good education, so try to work hard during the week and save the fun for the weekends!
Tip #1: Make a schedule!
All Temple students get free access to Google Calendar, which is an excellent resource to keep track of your daily activities and assignments! It is equally important to schedule time for extracurriculars. You can use your time to join one of our 350+ clubs, volunteer at a local organization, or join an intramural sports team.
Tip #2: Schedule “YOU” time throughout the day!
Whether it’s taking a nap, reading a book, or listening to music, it’s important to make time for yourself every day.
Temple offers a variety of class times and structures. Classes are generally scheduled Monday through Friday between the hours of 8 am and 8 pm. You’re no longer required to stay in school for 7+ hours a day like secondary school! Your class might be a base lecture, lab, recitation, studio session, or something in between. A great perk of being a Temple owl is that you’re able to build your own class schedule. Consult with an academic advisor before choosing your classes to make sure you’re on track!
Tip #3: Avoid a lopsided schedule!
This tip applies to both your workload and class schedule. Try to schedule your classes throughout the day, including at least one morning class. Morning classes give you a reason to wake up and start your day. One semester, I scheduled all afternoon and night classes and I found myself sleeping late and feeling unproductive. I would also suggest being mindful of your workload. A normal schedule consists of around 15 credits, so you want to make sure that you can keep up with your workload if you go above 15 credits.
Tip #4: Make every point count!
The grading scales of classes are a lot different in college. Homework has less weight in college than secondary school, and exams generally have a higher weight. Although homework is usually worth a small portion of your grade, it is still important to make sure you are completing it on time. Your grade can drop significantly for missing homework assignments.
Temple employs awesome professors that are extremely fascinating and passionate about their work. The student-teacher dynamic is a lot different in college compared to secondary school, especially with classroom expectations and workload. Unlike secondary school teachers, professors are not going to be on your case to complete your assignments. It is ultimately up to you to keep up with the workload and seek help when you are in need of assistance. Professors love connecting with their students and are always willing to help!
Tip #5: Utilize office hours!
Temple requires every professor to hold office hours each week. This window allows students to visit their professors outside of class and receive assistance if needed.
Temple has many hidden study spots across Main Campus! Some of my favorite study spots include the 4th floor of Charles Library, the lobby of 1810, and the second floor of the TECH Center. Most exams will require several hours of studying, but it’s an amazing feeling when you see that your hard work pays off.
Tip #6: Find study buddies!
I’ve found it extremely helpful to make friends with my classmates and set up study sessions before big exams and important deadlines. Studying with classmates is a helpful way to reinforce your understanding of course materials.
Now you know what to expect when you come to Temple in the fall! Good luck, owls!
Learn more about how to become a Temple Owl here!
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