Conquering Freshman Fears: Academics

Lecture Hall


Attention incoming freshmen: Now that you’ve got your social fears under control (if you missed it, see part one of this series, Conquering Freshman Fears: Making Friends), it’s time to tackle academics. One of the hardest parts of transitioning from high school to college is the difference between the two levels academically, which may have you dreading the first day of classes. Again, this fear is something shared by most freshmen, and you’re not alone. Before you begin to doubt your abilities, take a look at these tips for conquering freshman fears.

Fear #4: I won’t be able to keep up academically.

It’s true that college will be a lot more difficult and a lot more work than high school, but that doesn’t mean you won’t be able to make good grades. In college, after you choose a major, most of your classes will be tailored more specifically to your personal academic interests. These classes are designed to challenge you academically. If you find yourself needing extra help, there are tons of resources on college campuses that can help you succeed.

Fear #5: My professors will be too intimidating.

Many of your professors during your first year will gear the class ambiance and material to freshmen students, and understand the stress the transition to college can cause. Professors who teach freshmen are very open to helping students and answering questions both in and out of the classroom. They, along with teaching assistants, often will set up “office hours,” or scheduled times when students can come in with their questions to receive more one-on-one help. Getting to know your professors on a first name basis will ensure that they see you as not just another student in class, but one that goes above and beyond to excel in the classroom. It will also help you feel less intimidated by your professors when you see them in a different environment.

Fear #6: I was admitted by accident.

Many nervous students question whether or not their acceptance to college was an accident, and whether or not they are the caliber of student that the university looks for. The good news here is that the system the admissions office uses to review and admit students is very precise, and accidents, if they’ve ever happened, are extremely rare. You worked hard to get where you are, and you deserve it. Don’t question yourself, and start enjoying college for all of the great things it has to offer.

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