how to have a successful semester in college

How To Prepare For A New Semester Of College

Hi guys and welcome back to another blog post! By now either you’ve already started your spring semester of college or will be doing so very soon. It only seems fitting to write a blog post all about tips for the new semester. Whether this is your first or last semester of college we can all use some extra tips to start off on a positive note. So here are 8 ways to have a successful school year!

how to prepare for a new semester

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Get new school supplies

Some of us might have grown out of the phase where new stationery makes us excited but not me! New markers, new pens, new planner, STICKERS? Yup sign me up! Before the semester starts make sure to get some essentials or stationery that just makes you feel like a boss, because you are and you deserve it. Also, make sure to get any of the less glamorous items you need such as goggles for lab or a calculator for your math class. Make sure you’re heading into a new college semester prepared beforehand so you’re not scrambling to get everything on the first day of school.

Start filling in your planner now

The best way to prepare for a new semester is to plan it out ahead of time. So grab your planner and syllabus for each course and start filling in your monthly spread. Write down when assignments are due and test dates so you avoid missing assignments or due dates. In college, it’s so easy to fall behind and then it’s even harder to catch up, so stay on top of your work from the beginning! I personally love to fill out my planner and I also love to color code my classes. These are the pens I use and this is the planner I had in college. That planner was my favorite as a college student but it sells out very quickly so if you still haven’t gotten a planner I definitely recommend getting one soon!

Finish those last minute tasks you’ve been avoiding

There are always some last-minute tasks we all avoid completing but now is the time to do it before you get busy with classes. If you have any FAFSA forms or loan applications to fill out for school now is the time to get those done. Have questions for your professors regarding classes? Email them now. Don’t put these tasks off because I promise you they’ll be harder to do when you’re swamped with course work.

Look over your finances

Finances are so important as a college student, especially if you’re financially independent. Throughout college, I paid for my tuition, rent, college textbooks, and basically everything else on my own so I had to budget a lot. At the beginning of every semester, I would make a list of expenses such as rent, textbooks, school supplies, etc. I would also plan out every month how much I had to work at my part-time job to make sure I had enough money for my monthly expenses. This was crucial for me so I wasn’t as stressed about money when I was busy with school. So if you’re in the same boat as me in terms of finances I would recommend starting to plan and budget from the beginning.

Start motivating yourself now

One of my favorite things to do before the start of a new semester is to motivate myself and get into the right mindset. After the holidays we’re all probably still in that mode and not ready to start grinding it out with 4-6 classes a semester. So what I like to do is listen to my favorite motivational podcasts, YouTubers, and read blog posts like this! It can be about any topic such as healthy habits for the school year, how to study for exams, finance-related podcasts, manifesting your best life, etc. This will help motivate you to be the best version of yourself and work hard in school so you can create the life you want.

Write down your semester goals

I know I always talk about goal setting but it’s something I truly believe in and it’s made such a positive difference in my life. Before the start of every semester, I like to set some goals and I recommend actually writing them down. This way you can hold yourself accountable but also use it as a reminder. Your goals can include getting a certain grade in each of your classes and aiming for a specific GPA. Whatever your semester goals are just make sure to actually put in the effort throughout the semester to achieve them. Don’t just write some goals down and never revisit them or track your progress. I have a whole blog post on how to successfully set and achieve your goals here.

Clean up your space

Something about having a clean study space always makes me feel more productive and in control of my life. So before your college semester starts make sure to designate a study spot and clean that area off. If you still have paperwork from last semester either store it away until you need it for future exams or if you’re sure you don’t need it then throw it out. I used to hoard all my past semester’s work and clutter up my desk space which was so unnecessary!

best student desk for cheap

This is the desk I have and I love it! If it’s sold out you can check this website too because usually, the white one sells out super fast on Amazon. If you’re in the market for a new desk I would recommend the one I have because it’s much more spacious than other student desks and also very aesthetically pleasing for a good price. I use it as a work spot, for content shooting, and as a vanity for my makeup.

Start shopping around for textbooks

Another aspect about college that never made sense to me was how expensive textbooks are. We’re paying 50k a year in tuition but on top of that, we have to spend up to $1k in textbooks?! I always recommend that everyone wait until classes start to see if they actually need the textbooks. Throughout my 4 years of college, there have been many times where the syllabus tells you to buy a specific textbook but on the first day of class, the professor tells you it’s not necessary. I’m also a big believer that you need to read the textbook in order to study for exams. However, some professors will have enough material during their lectures and won’t even teach out of the textbook.

Alternatively, if you do need the textbook make sure to try out Amazon rentals or Chegg first. They usually have heavily discounted textbooks that are used or you can rent them for the semester! In college, it’s important to save money when you can so make sure you are shopping around for textbooks instead of buying them directly from your school’s bookstore.

Those are my best tips for getting ready for the new semester in college. What other ways are you guys preparing for the upcoming school year? Let me know in the comments below!

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You can also check out my other college-related blog posts here:
How To Study For Exams In College
How To Ace Online Classes
10 Habits Of Successful Students

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