College Survival Guide: First week of classes

Moving into college and getting settled is already a big challenge. The first week of classes, on the other hand, is a whole other ballgame. Those are usually the days when students receive their syllabuses and get fully introduced to their classes.

Getting back into the swing of things at school can be extremely stressful. Photo by Justin Barnes.

This is also a time where stress begins to rise. People will soon start worrying about how they’re going to be able to complete all the assignments along with their extracurricular activities, jobs or other obligations.  Here are a few tips on how to get through the first week of classes with as little stress as possible.

Ask questions

The first week is always the perfect opportunity to ask questions about anything. Don’t be afraid to ask about grading policies, assignments, office hours, scheduling appointments or whatever comes to your mind. Your professors are here to help you and want you to succeed. To quote Sir Francis Bacon, “Knowledge is power.”

Don’t procrastinate 

You may be tempted to put your work off until later, but don’t. This will only amplify your stress and decrease the quality of your assignments. It’s strongly recommended that you start new assignments as soon as you get them. You are given that amount of time for a reason, so do not squander it. Again, do not be afraid to ask questions if you’re confused about it.

Go for a workout

Whether it’s lifting weights, running, doing push-ups or dancing, working out is always a great outlet for your stress. Exercising also boosts the production of endorphins in your brain, which, in layman’s terms, are hormones that block pain and increase happiness. Be sure to stop by the gym and spend about forty-five minutes to an hour breaking a sweat. You will come out with a clear mind and a can-do attitude when you are finished.


Just because you have tons of work to do does not mean that you have to kiss your social life and hobbies goodbye. Be sure to schedule some down time to do whatever you like to do: drawing, hanging out with friends/significant others, listening to music, going out, watching Netflix or whatever you want. Enjoy yourself but do not overdo it.

The first week of classes will seem intimidating at first, but it will get easier as time goes on. Don’t let stress and fear get the best of you. Just do your work, ask questions if you have any, schedule some downtime and, above all, take it one day at a time.

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