25 Oct 2016

4 Things No One Tells You about Re-Entering School

Article on - 4 Things No One Tells You about Re-Entering School

Many articles speak about what you should expect from tertiary school and how best to cope with stress, but not many tell you about what a culture shock it really is. Whether as a part- or full-time student, re-entering school can be daunting and difficult to readjust to – especially if you have left school for a couple of years.

So if you are looking to re-enter school, here are four hard truths to mentally prepare yourself with before your first semester begins.

Perhaps one of the biggest challenge faced when re-entering school, is the realisation that your entire life needs to be reprioritised. School and work (if you are holding down a full-time job), will take precedence over everything else. Late-nights out with friends, spontaneous holidays or any other leisure activity will have to take a backseat – at least for now. It might take some getting used to with new priorities and the habit of saying “no” to invitations, but it would be all worth the while.

Differing Priorities
This is with explicit reference to group projects and partner work. Similar to the workplace or even within your group of friends, everyone works differently because of differing priorities. You may want to start discussions early and to move forward with a project. However not everyone in the group agrees with your approach, and would rather leave it to a few weeks before its due date.

It happens to the best of us, so do not be discouraged. Take this lead time to research and create a mind map on what the final report should cover, find credible references and have a rough plan on the report’s structure. With this information on hand, discussions with groupmates will be more fruitful and thorough, and delegation of work can be made methodologically.

Administrative Procedures
With everything shifting its presence online these days, so have most academic administrative tasks. Gone are the days of having to submit a hard copy of your report to the lecturer. Dedicated platforms and systems are in place for you to utilise, check for plagiarism and submit your assignment amongst other features. As convenient as this may be, be sure to cater extra time for assignment submissions. As with most systems, there is an increase probability of a glitch when there is high traffic, so always save a screenshot of your submission for verification.

Hidden Costs
So you have paid for the tuition and registration fees, but have you set aside a budget for ad-hoc payments or a sizeable emergency fund? You may be wondering, “what else is there to pay for?” Well, quite a few things. These include compulsory textbooks, online subscriptions to e-books or publications, graduation and an emergency fund in case you have to retake an exam or an entire module.

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