Getting into the first day of university in the UK is no easy feat. The fact that you’ve made it this far and have been accepted into a program that will allow you to fulfil your academic pursuits deserves our heartiest congratulations. All that’s left for you to do is wait for the day when you’ll be stepping into a transformative journey that will change how the next four years of your life will look like. We’ve collected some tips to help you, soldier, through your first day at uk university in the best way possible.

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It’s okay to be nervous

Before we proceed, we know that despite the hardest part of this new scholastic journey already being done, the impending first day of university is filled with overwhelming anticipation. You probably have nerves about the campus, your accommodation, the faculty, and the people you’ll be meeting for the very first time. This nervous excitement might be even more apparent for those making a journey across international waters to attend a university in the UK.

Let us assure you that there is nothing to worry about. Your first day at a UK university will also be the first for many others. Regardless of their age, program, or level of degree, most people will be just as nervous about all the things that are making you nervous on your first day.

With that, let’s dive into the tips that will help you prepare for your first day of university in the UK.

Tips to prepare for the first day at UK University

1. Check Out Facebook Groups

This is something you can do after you’ve received your confirmation letter/email. Many UK universities have public and private Facebook groups that freshers can join. These will allow you to see the faces you can expect to meet on your first day. You can strike up conversations with newcomers or with seniors and make plans to meet up. This way you will have someone to ride out the first day with you. These groups will also be great sources of information about the campus, faculty, and other tidbits that previous students can share.

2. Visit the Campus Beforehand

Whether you’re coming from a non-EU country or a local student, check out the campus if you are new to the city or area your UK university is situated in. If your university is in a big city like London or has a rather large campus such as that of Aberystwyth University in Wales, it can be pretty easy to get lost. Since you don’t want to get lost on your first day, it makes sense to walk around the campus a day or two before and check out the classes, library, bathroom, and other facilities.

3. Check the Information Packet

Typically, UK universities send a comprehensive guide or information packet in the mail and/or attached to your welcome email. This will contain information about course enrolments and pre-registration requirements for your student portal. Make sure you through it so you don’t miss out on critical information such as the courses you can take in the first semester. This brings us to the next point…

4. Enroll and Print Out Your Timetable

Every university in the UK has a different way of going about enrolments. You will likely get an email a month or so informing you of the data and procedure your UK university follows. Once you’ve successfully enrolled in the right courses, the university will email you your schedule for the entire semester along with the names of your instructors, professors, and lecturers. To avoid being late to your classes, print out a copy of your timetable.

5. Get Your Student ID

Much like enrolment, every UK university goes about differently when it comes to student IDs. On the first day of university, your university may ask you for a photo and other relevant details through email when you’re pre-registering yourself. Or they might take your photo and ask you to fill out a form on enrolment day. Make sure you keep your student ID on you at all times on your first day. Put it on a lanyard and wear it around your neck, or keep it in your wallet so it’s on you at all times.

6. Check your email the day before

While it’s not necessary, some professors and teachers will send out emails to their students. These could be simple welcome emails or more informative with a list of books and supplies you’re supposed to bring on day one. They might also include other important instructions or even hand out reading assignments.

7. Sign Up for an Orientation Event

While orientation events are meant for all students to attend, some universities might make it optional. International students coming to the UK for the first time can benefit from these as they are very informative. You’ll learn more about the campus, your faculty, the university’s academic policies, upcoming social events, and other information that will prove valuable throughout your first semester. Your orientation might also include a campus tour.

8. Get Sufficient Sleep

Nine tips to prepare for your first day at uk university

The excitement and anxiety of starting school and the first day of the next two to four years of your life are probably going to be too palpable to let you sleep.  However, you certainly don’t want to arrive with low energy and looking like you haven’t slept in a while. Try to get a couple of hours of sleep the night before so you can enjoy the rest of the day without crashing halfway into your schedule. You want to be ready for a big day. If your first day was in the dorms, unpack as early as possible to get adequate sleep and avoid spending the night searching for items you need for the following day.

9. Arrive As Soon As You Can

When you’ve familiarized yourself with the campus, have your timetable in hand, and gotten enough sleep, all that’s left is to get to class on time. Arriving early will give you some time before the class starts to calm down and get your nerves in check. You will also get some time to chat with your classmates and make a few acquaintances so that you don’t feel as overwhelmed for the rest of the day.

Final Thoughts

Your first day at a UK university doesn’t have to be as nerve-racking as you anticipate it to be. While it’s completely natural to feel a little anxious about starting something new and as major as a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree, you can fight some of those nerves with the tips we’ve mentioned here and enjoy the day to the maximum.

Those who need assistance with UK university admissions, please do not hesitate to contact us.


Does the UK university have a dress code?

Most universities in the UK don’t make students dress up in an academic uniform for something other than their own graduation. Instead, learners are encouraged to look nice for their classes and any other university events.

What should I bring with me to college on the first day?

– Student ID (if you have one)
– Diary or notebooks.
– Laptops or tablets.
– Campus map
– Textbooks
– Stationery such as pencils, pens, folders, and highlighters.

Is the first year of university extremely difficult?

Going to university is a big step, and it can feel extremely hectic. Many of them will be living away from home for so long. When you add this to the fact that you have to figure out a hard course, a new place, and make new friends, the first year can sometimes feel so confusing.

What problems do first-year university students have to deal with?

Some challenge of your university’s first year can be – Homesickness.
Transport system.
Time management.