What should I expect at a uni freshman week?
This is the first of three lessons about Fresher’s Week. To complete this course, read each lesson carefully and then unlock and complete our materials to check your understanding.
– Introduce the concept of having a ‘fresher’s week’ at British and US universities
– Explore the purpose of having a fresher’s week
– Discuss what students should expect during the first week of their undergraduate degree
While it may be an unfamiliar event for those who haven’t enrolled in university, the week-long induction that welcomes new undergraduate students is notorious among the academic community. Whether it’s called fresher’s week in the UK or perhaps ‘orientation’ or ‘welcome’ week in the USA, a student’s first week on campus is full of new and exciting opportunities for freshmen before their bachelor’s degree begins. Lesson 1 of this short course explains exactly what a fresher’s week is, while Lessons 2 and 3 aim to prepare students for a well-balanced and successful experience by considering the many ‘dos’ and ‘don’ts’. After completing this short course, you should hopefully have a good idea of what to expect in your first week at university.
What is the purpose of ‘fresher’s week’?
Universities know that the process leading up to the start of an undergraduate degree can be a stressful and anxious time for students. They understand that for many enrolling onto a bachelor’s degree means moving away from home and the familiarity of friends and family. Combined with the fact that universities have so many extra curricular clubs and societies and experiences to offer and the pressures of the new degree, it’s easy to see why new students take at least a few weeks (or months!) to adjust to their new life. Fresher’s week is therefore purposefully designed to alleviate stress and anxiety by allowing students an extra week before classes start to get to know their new environment, to set up their new home, and to ensure that they have all their classes in place. While it is widely recognised that this additional week helps the academic year to begin as smoothly as possible, for students there’s more to it than just stress relief.
What should I expect during fresher’s week?
Before arriving at university, it’s very likely that fresher’s week will be advertised to you through various media platforms. From these adverts, you’ll soon see that this week is generally chock full of fun activities and events and the opportunity to sign up to clubs and societies. Expect for there to be welcome signs and direction arrows and helpers in the form of student volunteers, all there to assist you with navigating the campus and its many dining halls and dormitories.
It’s not all fun though! Be prepared during this time to have to collect your student ID and check-in to your accommodation, and perhaps even meet your tutors too. There may be meetings from the high-up university staff you have to attend, so make sure you note these in your diary, and take the opportunity to sign up to campus and city tours – and don’t miss out on the famous ‘fresher’s fair’ to. This is a campus-wide event that showcases everything the university has to offer in terms of clubs and societies and services such as healthcare and sports, and there’ll likely be representation from local businesses offering student discounts for signing up to phone tariffs or local restaurants too. All in all, there is plenty to keep any new student busy, so be prepared for an exciting week!
To quickly review this information, unlock, download and complete the Lesson 1 Worksheet below. Then continue on to Lessons 2 and 3 to consider the ‘dos’ and ‘don’ts’ that help students make the most of the freshmen experience.
There are currently no PowerPoint activities, additional teacher resources or audio and video recordings created for this topic. Please come back again next semester.
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