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Advice from FdA Early Years Student, Kara Dixon

Image of Kara Dixon, FdA Early Years student

Early Years - FdA

Hi my name is Kara and I am a student on the FdA Early Years 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 the transition to your next stage of learning as smooth as possible and hopefully ease any anxieties you might have.

The best discovery I have made since starting my course

The first and main thing I discovered was that everyone is so lovely and helpful, the staff are always willing to help you and go the extra mile for you if you are willing to put in the time and effort.

My favourite thing about BCU

My favourite thing is the friendly environment here and how easy it is to get along with students and the tutors - even those who don't teach me are always friendly and helpful. All the students always make me feel really comfortable and are very reliable - when I have had to take part in group projects everyone has always made a valuable contribution, which has helped me to learn new things too.

What I like about studying in the city

The great thing about being in the centre of Birmingham is that there's always lots of people about, which makes everything feel very vibrant and alive. There are some great places to hang out and eat, including Digbeth Dining Club on a Friday evening which is just around the corner from the college.

I commute to and from the college so I like the good transport links - it is really easy to get to by bus, train and tram.

My advice for students starting the course in September

Always be prepared, be ready to take notes but also make sure you're mentally ready. Reading around the subject really helped me before I started and just being in the right frame of mind it will really help too. It is a lovely environment because everyone who is here wants to learn and develop themselves, so it is great to be a part of that.

What I didn't know before starting

I think the biggest surprise for me was how at ease I felt in the course. Before I started I thought it was going to be really difficult and that I would struggle, but I was pleasantly surprised.

The staff go at a pace that makes things easy to understand, they give you the time to do the research you need to do to fill any gaps in your knowledge and upload everything online so you can go back to things as and when you need to. They go though things with you all the time and show you where you can improve and tell you your strong points.

Also, although we are based at the college in Digbeth we have full access to the BCU campus' and facilities so make the most of it - they are fab!

My uni essentials

I would say that being ready to learn is a college essential, as is the general note taking equipment such as a notepad, pens, highlighters and a laptop (if you have one). I would also say knowing how to access everything on a computer is a major help. I think being prepared is the most important thing.

I hope that you have found this information useful and if you have any questions in the meantime please do not hesitate to drop me an email and I will do my best to help.

See you around soon!