Getting Off To A Good Start Guide

Overview: Starting university is a big step. There is a lot that I want to tell you about how to make your university experience better, so over the past few years I have bundled that advice into a guide we call ‘Getting Off To A Good Start’. Lots of tips on self-care, study skills and making the most of the university experience. Students – feel free to share with a new student. Staff – feel free to distribute to your first years at orientation.

Whether this is your first year at university or you are returning to continue your studies, I am going to make the assumption that you want to get off to a ‘good start’.

By that I mean you have habits in place that will help you succeed at your studies, as well as enjoy your time at university.

With Orientation in full swing, I put together this blog guide called ‘Getting off to a good start‘*. It is a series of interlinked posts exploring different aspects of getting started at uni.

Sections of the guide 📘

We used to hand out hard copies of this guide but in recent years, I have been trying to be more environmentally and financially prudent. Instead, it is organised into sections on the Student Health and Wellbeing Blog. You can read on your phone and bookmark to revisit later.

This guide is not only relevant to new students. It is relevant to any student, at any stage of their degree, who is hoping to make a successful start to the year.

The guide consists of lots of links out to other articles and resources. Two in particular might be of interest to you. One of them is our Evidence-Based Study Strategies document which tells you exactly what study strategies work and which ones don’t. The other is our Self-Care Mega Guide, a document packed with tips for creating the life you want.

So please read, bookmark, contemplate & share if you think it is worthwhile.


But that is not all……

My goal is to make this guide one of the definitive guides provided to new students as they start their university experience.

The first Getting Off To A Good Start guide was published in 2019. We’ve then kept it updated each year for 2020, 2021, 2022 and 2023.

Whilst I am pretty happy with the guide, I don’t believe in settling. I have ideas on how to improve it further. One of those ideas is to include advice from current students to new students on what worked for them in making the most of their university experience

So if you have some wisdom you’d like to share with new students, either respond to this blog post, or email me directly on

If we get enough content from existing students, I’ll include an ‘advice from other students’ section in future versions of the guide.



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