Advice from student Naomi Evans
BA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies
Hi, my name is Naomi Evans and I am a student on the Early Childhood Studies BA (Hons) course here at Birmingham City University (BCU).
Preparing to start is really exciting, but can be overwhelming too - I remember only too well how I felt when I was in your shoes. Below I have shared my advice and tips to make your transition to uni life as smooth as possible and hopefully ease any anxieties you might have.
The best discovery I have made since starting BCU
The best discovery was when I found out that Summon (the website we use to find our academic reading) actually references the source for you! Referencing is the most tedious and time consuming part of writing an assignment, so when I found out it referenced the sources automatically, it was a life saver.
The best thing about University
My favourite thing about BCU that they recognise and value your potential. I've always felt like part of the family here and that really helped me to settle in quickly. Even outside of the course and study hours, BCU offers lots of events - such as the Higher Academic Achievers Recognition Scheme (HARS) - to show how much they value their students.
My favourite places in Birmingham
Definitely seek out one of the many parks in the city - they're like finding hidden treasure! There are more parks in thank you think for such a big city, so visit somewhere near City South Campus like Cannon Hill Park with its boats, crazy golf and the Midland Arts Centre (mac) as it's good to see some green! In the City Centre, The Flapper is a great student pub, it's just down from Brindley Place on the canal - it's quite picturesque in an evening but incredibly cheap and casual too!
My tips for students starting in September
My advice for students starting the Early Childhood Studies course in September would be to make the most of every opportunity you are given. I know it sounds cliché but you get out of University what you put into it. If you work hard; contribute to group discussions, meet deadlines, but - most importantly - get involved in everything BCU has to offer, you will have so much more fun. By getting involved, you will make some of the best friends and achieve exactly what you want to in the end.
What I didn’t know before starting my course
I was surprised how interactive seminars are. Before I started I thought every day would be lectures, but with Early Childhood Studies, most of our learning is through seminars. This is a great way to share ideas, challenge yourself and make friends with people on your course.
My uni essentials
For students who live in student halls, fluffy socks and blankets are an essential. I'd also recommend some home comforts: family photos or pictures with friends to help you feel at home while studying. If you choose to commute, highlighter pens are important to bring with you - you will be reading so many journals that making the paper look colourful makes it much more memorable and interesting.
I hope that you have found this helpful and if you have any questions then feel free to send an email and we'll get back to you. Hope to see you soon!