How to get through university alive - 10 top tips

Have a child heading off this autumn? Give them a head start by imparting these lessons learned the hard way by Mumsnetters during their own uni days. 

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1. Be careful which clubs you join

"My mother's advice to me when I was leaving for university: if you are miserable it's probably not worth it. And don't join a cult."


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2. Don't let random strangers into your student house

"I allowed 'maintenance men' (AKA burglars) into the flat to 'look around'. Luckily we were poor students and obviously had nothing worth nicking, so they left disappointed and empty handed."


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3. Know your limits

"When you feel sick, stop drinking."


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4. Read the instructions

"I used to wonder why all my clothes were fading and thinning. Turned out it was because I was boil washing everything!"


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5. Adjust your expectations

"I thought it was perfectly normal to follow my mother's example of a weekly shop in Waitrose, a visit to the farmers' market during the week for meat and cheese and a trip to M&S if you run out of cakes and biscuits. I was 18 and a student FFS."


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6. If it doesn't seem right, it probably isn't

"When I was 18 and in my first year at uni I more or less lived on jacket potato with cheese and beans. All three ingredients had precisely 10 minutes in the microwave and then I wondered why the cheese and beans were always black and the potato was raw."


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7. Stick to your budget 

"Spending your student loan on a load of old bolleaux is bad. You will still be paying for that night out in 15 years' time."

 

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8. Never trust your computer

"Always save your work regularly and always back up! My friend lost her entire dissertation the week before it was due in."


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9. There's a reason for the way your parents do things

"I DID know to separate my washing but my rookie mistake was wanting to save money and washing everything all in one load. My parents from then on referred to my pants being 'university grey'."


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10. Listen to your parents

"Before I headed off to uni my dad said, very seriously, 'Well... don't do anything stupid.' It pretty much covers it all!"


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More useful info...


Packing for university: essentials checklist


Student finance explained


How to eat on the cheap


Last updated: 7 months ago