You got through the first year, had a blast, and you’re excited to get back to university for year two of your degree. We don’t blame you for being eager — uni life can be great!
However, the second year differs to the first year, and we’d like to tell you why below — after all, it’s better to go into something prepared.
The majority of uni dropouts happen early on in the second year, and we’re here to explain why.
Grab a drink and have a read of this blog post, written especially for you.
Your academic work gets serious
First things first, the pressure is on in your second year. Often, in the first year, you are set assignments but the marks don’t count towards your final grade.
However, in the second year, you are often set more work, and each piece counts towards your final degree classification.
This is not a problem if you are prepared for it, but it can, of course, catch some people by surprise, which can lead to higher levels of stress and, in turn, other emotional difficulties.
If you do suffer from stress at uni, there’s a guide for managing it here.
So, now you’ve read this, know that there’s lots of hard work ahead, but you’ll be fine as long as you stay organised, manage your workload, and talk to someone if you are struggling.
You move into a house share
Some first-years opt to live in a house share, but the majority of Leeds students live in halls of residence for year one of university. This means that year two brings another new challenge to most students — moving into a house share.
Halls offer a super easy life, often with built-in support, security, cleaning, catering, etc. These factors make them an appropriate option for your first year, as it’s a very gentle way for students to adjust to life away from their parents.
However, halls don’t prepare you for life in a house share, where you need to take on a few new challenges. Living in a shared house is often fun and rewarding, but it does come with a bit more responsibility.
Julia Krason outlined her first-year to second-year transition experience in a blog post on Her Campus.
“In my honest opinion, second year is where it gets real, because in first year you are cradled, sheltered, and have no idea what university is really like. With second year comes a whole slew of new challenges: living with roommates in a house, cooking for yourself, cleaning, actually getting to class instead of the two-minute walk from rez, etc. I thought I was prepared for all of that, but what I wasn’t prepared for was the isolation.”
You need to put more effort into socialising
For all the benefits of living in a house share, halls are highly sociable and so, on comparison, a house share can seem far less so.
Of course, you can still make plans to see all of your friends; they just won’t all be living on your doorstep anymore. So, this is something to bear in mind when going into the second year.
Be prepared to get more organised when it comes to seeing friends. Unless, of course, you chose to share a house with your first-year besties — then you’re sorted! Just make sure you make a conscious effort to spend time with each other and aren’t out every night seeing other friends.
You need to ‘adult’
More so than in halls, you’re going to have to ‘adult’ in a house share! This means considering others. House shares are fantastic fun as long as you each pull your weight when it comes to cleaning, washing up, and so on. A rota is the fairest way to deal with these tasks.
To avoid the additional stress of dealing with household bills, you could opt for a bills inclusive rent package.