Survey Results : Pre-Arrival Reading Recieved

  1. Following in tradition from the previous sage scholars, in early December 2016 we formulated a survey for undergraduate students in order to find out about their pre-arrival preparation for university, particularly in their reading allocations. Having received 115 responses in total, the largest proportion of students came from Geography students at 19%, followed by Psychology students at 14%, and Business Management and Finance at 13%, with the rest of the results being supplied by students from a variety of other subjects. In the following 3 posts we will look at how students approached their reading materials, this first post will look into the choices made about books from students who received a pre-arrival reading list.

 

 

When asked if a pre arrival reading list was received before beginning the course, only 36.5% of students answered yes, however 64% of students who received their reading lists did actually utilise them (so well done you).

We wanted to know how these students decided which books they were going were going to purchase from the lists, and the result was quite mixed. 34% of students bought their books in accordance to the relevance to the course, where 28% of students simply bought all of the recommended reading from the lists they received, the remaining 38% opted for the more economical route to choosing books to buy, via methods such as purchasing what was available second hand, what wasn’t available in the library, and what were the least expensive.

 

 


For the 36% of students who didn’t use the reading list to purchase any books, the majority of their responses at 27% stated that they didn’t want to commit to purchasing books before the course began, suggesting there are reservations in making an investment into books that may not be completely essential. This ties in with the fact that 20% of our responses concluded that the books being TOO EXPENSIVE was the deciding factor in their utilisation of the pre-arrival reading list. Many other students indicated they’d resisted form purchasing books prior to starting the course as they thought they potentially could access them elsewhere e.g. the library, online and previous students.

Posted in Accessing resources, Reading lists, SAGE students, Surveys

How To: Using Resources

What I thought I already knew

At the beginning and even mid way through the term I thought I could survive on the textbooks I had already purchased. I was getting good grades in my exams from following the essential reading list and was progressing nicely through all my modules. This then changed in the lead up to a business law essay. For this essay I realised the topic the essay was based on was covered in less than a page in the textbook. This would not be substantial information to secure me a good grade with a small, but mighty, 1,000 words to write. I immediately knew that there would be a lot more wider reading to commit to.

Don’t let book purchasing break the bank

Most readings will be online

Within the business faculty we are very fortunate to have a lot of PDF files put online with essential reading that is not included in the textbook. This was a life saver! For a start it didn’t cost me anything to access these resources. I also found I didn’t even feel slightly panicked or lost as the files were already loaded on study direct and were readily available with just one click to download the file. However, there was not a list of recommended wider reading… This was down for me to discover and decipher if it was of any use to me, something that I had not done before regarding a law essay.

The library resources are endless

The library resources seem to be in endless supply. I discovered this when searching for wider reading concerning my essay topic. It was so simple to find hundreds of books, journal articles and other online resources with one simple search. Upon typing in my essay topic, vicarious liability, a list of every resource appeared, this could be filtered and tailored to your exact requirements. Another useful tool was showing the exact location of the book and whether it was in stock, this saved a lot of time searching through the
entirety of the law section to find out I had walked past it five times or that it was actually already withdrawn.

The library will become your haven

For me I could not have even written this particular essay in anywhere but the library. Noisy halls and a topic you are not particularly knowledgable about do not mix. This is why I would retreat to the library and work away to my hearts content. I found many of my friends also had essay deadlines so we would book a private library pod and work in there. This particular facility is brilliant! If you want to be in the library but need a lot of space to work and a semi-silent atmosphere this is perfect for you. Each room is equipped with everything you need, a massive spacious table, chairs, a whiteboard and my personal favourite, a TV connected to a computer allowing you to display powerpoints or online resources.

Referencing is not your friend 

With regards to referencing I am not the best at it and I will need to focus a lot more on it going into the second semester. Until now I have never had to reference my work, or if I did, I didn’t. So going into an essay and not having much guidance was a very big challenge for me. To begin with most faculties across the university have different referencing styles and therefore not everyone will be able to help you with your particular one. I got recommended a website called ref me, which basically does the referencing for you, you then just need to fit it into your text accordingly. This was essential for me as it put everything in the right order and also created a bibliography title too.

PLEASE PLAN YOUR TIME 

Everyone always goes on and on about making sure you leave yourself enough time to write the essay. Usually recommending writing a plan, doing a first draft a week before and then doing the final tweaking of the essay a few days before the deadline. DO IT! I sadly did not do this despite planning on doing so. I prioritised other assessments that probably did not require as much time and attention as this one and it did show within my work. I began panicking and making stupid mistakes, I missed out a few of the readings I wanted to and I only have myself to blame. If I were faced with this situation again, which being a first year student is inevitable that I will, I would ensure I created a study timetable as I would with regards to exams. It never hurts to be overly prepared rather than underprepared.

Don’t panic!

Whatever you do, do not panic. There are plenty of people across the university to help you find the resources you are looking for. In the library there are a range of helpful librarians who can show you how to use the computers to locate resources or they might even know straight away if it is a popular topic.

Your peers are also there to help too! If you are looking for similar readings they will be able to suggest ones they’ve found helpful or where begin looking for new ones. If it weren’t for my peers I wouldn’t have a clue where to begin with referencing.

Lastly, speak to your tutors. They may seem busy and you might feel as though you’re bothering them but they will listen and help. My seminar tutor was brilliant with telling me what sorts of resources I should be looking at and which ones to avoid using for an essay, but which might be useful for exam preparation.

No matter what you are struggling with, people will be able to help you find what you’re looking for and that is what is important.

Aly

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Posted in Accessing resources, Assessments, Assignments, Ebooks, Essays, Library, Reading lists, SAGE students

Essay Quest: How to find the best sources

Within Global Studies, having essential readings as an online resource is a godsend! With so many different readings from different journals and authors, buying books would very quickly result in shedding out hundreds of pounds for a one time read. However when that oh so great (really not great) time comes when you have to write your essays, the library becomes your best friend. Whether it’s online or in person, the library has your back on your gruelling journey to deadline day. When it comes to finding sources to reference in you essays, searching for the right books and articles is always a blast! (Again it really isn’t). From writing essays in my foundation year I quickly learned that citing websites or newspapers is not the way to access the highest marks, so I had to adapt my method for finding references and resources. Now my essay quest always begins with what I would say are two of the most useful resources available, Google Scholar and Library Search.
These systems work exactly the same as if you were trying to find out what goes into cooking the perfect steak, but instead for your essays. Whether you’re looking for somewhere to start and search your essay title, or are looking for more targeted sources to back up your point, Google scholar offers you the most relevant books, journals and scholarly articles in relation to your search, perfect for referencing. Now 9 times out of 10 resources are instantly available online, thanks to the library’s many subscriptions to a plethora publishers such as Sage (very good for Geography), however sometimes you may actually have to leave the confines of your room to go and read a physical book (shocking, I know)! This is where library search becomes very handy, similar to Google Scholar it can also find you online versions of books and articles, however in that off chance you can’t access it or there isn’t one, the search will tell you if what you need is in our library, how many there are, and even where to find it,

Look at all those results!

so you can guarantee they’ve got what you need, before you put in the effort to make yourself presentable to the world. Although you can’t press CTRL+F on a book and search for key words, library books are often filled with years worth of wisdom from past students in the same situation as you. Some may beg to differ but I find nothing more satisfying then when I open a book and I already see things underlined *important* or pages circled in the contents, obviously you must still use your own intelligence to really identify what’s important, but it’s somewhat reassuring to know that you’re on the right track. Which so much information out in the world today, Google Scholar and Library Search are essentials in your essay writing game plan.

Andre Ryan

Posted in Accessing resources, Assessments, Assignments, Essays, Library, SAGE students

A Learning Process

Having made it through the first term, you expect to find yourself looking towards the second term with a new found confidence: You’ve been taught the resilience needed to scroll through an unimaginable number of pages from a Google Scholar search; you’ve learnt that leaving a 2000-word report until the night before can only end in disaster; and you’ve found a new appreciation for the Towering Mountain of Terror- AKA the list of extra reading that is 160 pages long and needs to be read by tomorrow. Having been armed with four months of experience in the day-to-day juggling that university requires, you’d think that things would be looking easier for the months ahead, right? Well, that maybe the case for some, but unfortunately I have yet to reach that level of self-organisation. If you find yourself in the same boat as me, never fear- we can get through this! Here are 5 things I discovered last term, and that I am determined to work on over the following months:

1) The library exists during the day.

Some people may be as surprised as I was to find that the library’s sole use is not, in fact, to act as a 2am refuge to students dosed on caffeine, desperately trying to do two weeks of work in one night. Yes, as an avid reader I am ashamed to say that for most of last term, the only reason I would go to the library was when I needed a quiet space to do some last minute cramming. For some time, I considered the library a slightly daunting place; it’s such a large space that it’s hard to know where to begin to look for what you need, and having never taken a library tour, I’d given up on the library as a source of information before I’d even given it a chance. However, I have since discovered the Psychology section within the library, and I am determined to do some daylight exploration of its depths this term. If you, like me, have yet to fully utilise the library’s resources I fully recommend that you do – I have found that the library staff are all incredibly friendly and willing to help, so it’s better late than never to figure out the maze.

2) Spending money is unavoidable.

As I wrote in my last post about my book purchases, the library has multiple copies of almost all the text books you’ll ever need, and there are always ways to get specific pages for seminars or course work, so it is not always necessary to spend money. But for easy access to information nothing beats having your own copy of a text book, and I am coming to regret my ‘purchase as and when needed’ policy; after all, the School of Psychology would not have given a reading list unnecessarily, and in hindsight the packaged deal that they offered on all 5 text books probably have saved me money. So if you have yet to purchase your text books, I would suggest you give the packaged deal a second thought – it may seem like a lot of money but once you have your books, life will be that little bit less stressful! As for me, I have resigned myself to the fact that I will have to purchase the rest of my textbooks in due course; in fact, How Children Develop by Robert S. Siegler, Judy S. DeLoache and Nancy Eisenberg, is currently sat in my Amazon basket, ready and waiting for the day that I can bring myself to accept the £52.99 loss to my bank account.

3) Google Scholar is not the devil…

Google Scholar Advanced Search

Library Search Engine

I know it’s hard to believe when you find yourself staring blankly at a screen of search results which seem to have absolutely nothing to do with what you were looking for, but for a simple search engine, it does have its advantages. Other than being able to do a more complex search by using the drop down menu on the search bar, if you still aren’t getting the sorts of studies you are looking for, I’ve found that it can be helpful to use the ‘Cited by’ option underneath each search result. This takes you to a list of researchers who have cited the paper you clicked on, and can broaden your reading material and help you to find what you’re looking for. I’ve found that it’s all about finding which search engine is right for you, and if Google Scholar isn’t quite cutting it, then there is always the library search engine Library Search, which allows you to search through all the resources the University of Sussex has to offer.

4) … but Harvard Referencing most definitely is.

Okay, that may be a slightly dramatic statement, but nonetheless it does sometimes feel like referencing is impossible to get your head around, and I’m facing it more and more as the year goes on. Not only have you got to master the format in which the information must be listed in a bibliography, but it changes for each type of information source you use (e.g. referencing a book compared to an online journal)! And, as if one form of referencing wasn’t enough, doing both Psychology and Criminology means that I have to wrap my head around both Harvard and APA style referencing *calming thoughts*… However, in my quest to master referencing I have discovered a few tricks of the trade, the first of which being Microsoft Word’s referencing tool which allows you to type in all the information about the information source and then inputs the information into a bibliography for you. The other way to make references easier, goes back to Google Scholar; under most of the sources you’ll find a button which says ‘Cite’; this brings up a pop-up with a citation for the resource, and all you have to do is choose ‘Harvard referencing’ or any other type of referencing you need. Thank you, Google!

Option to Cite Google Scholar References

5) You get out what you put in.

This is definitely the most valuable thing I have learnt from my first term here at Sussex. Like any student I’ve had days where it’s seemed more important to spend time with friends, explore the town or binge-watch shows on Netflix than actually do coursework. But when the exam season arrived I felt an overwhelming sense of regret as the stress washed over me and I realised I hadn’t been nearly as dedicated to my studies as I probably should’ve. Of course, it’s easy to tell yourself to become more organised and more focused, but it is a completely different thing to put that resolve into practice. But that is what I intend to at least try and do this term, to make the most of all that this experience has to offer.

Posted in Essays, Library, Reading lists, Revision, SAGE students

Survey: Fancy winning a £100 Amazon voucher and study skills books?

If you’re looking for the chance to win a £100 Amazon voucher and set of SAGE publication study skills books please fill in the short survey below!

https://sussex.onlinesurveys.ac.uk/pre-arrival-reading-2016

The survey is looking at pre-arrival reading for undergraduate students for 2016-2017. We have written about our own pre-arrival reading experiences and want to know if they are similar to our fellow students. The results and findings, which will appear in a follow up blog post, will help us to make improvements for future students of Sussex. We look forward to viewing the results and announcing the winner soon!

Posted in Focus groups, Freshers, Reading lists, SAGE students, Surveys

Canada: the country that forced Eva to buy a book

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In Canada I had many new experiences; maple syrup became a staple in my diet (turns out it’s great in curries), I felt what it’s like to walk around in -40’C, I witnessed politeness so extreme it made me uncomfortable, and, for the first time, I felt how it feels to buy a book for my studies. That’s right, you read correctly, Eva bought a book.

We were all given ‘course outlines’, printed handbooks, made by and handed out in the first class by the lecturers, which contained information about the module and reading lists. Course outlines were so detailed (they averaged about 12 pages in length) that students obediently followed them, including the section on which books to buy. In the course outlines, most lecturers made it very clear exactly what you had to do, the style you had to do it in, which themes link with which, and which boxes to tick. Some would say spoon-feeding, some would say clarity.

 

The detail(!)

Sample page of course outline: the detail(!!)

Students were not only accustomed to spending huge amounts of money at the beginning of each module (they still complained (until I told them how much we pay for tuition fees)) but they had the resources there for them to do it in the most efficient and easiest way possible. The bookshop was centrepiece in the student union building and the lecturers communicated with local bookshops who compiled all the short readings into a printed bundle with a $30 tag on. These reading packs (a.k.a. ‘course readers’) were available to purchase from a couple of local book shops and were printed compilations of all the journal articles, book extracts and newspaper articles on the reading lists. I never bought one because I found all the articles online through both Sussex and Ottawa’s online library, and I found most the books in uOttawa’s library. Luckily I didn’t experience much competition on my monopoly on library books as the reading packs were so popular. They were popular not only because they covered the module’s entire reading material, but also because they were printed rather than online so students could write notes and highlight on them.

It is perhaps how accustomed everyone else in my classes were to buying books and course readers that enabled me to mainly bypass the system. I reserved books well in advance from the library, I used old editions from the library (checking with friends which chapters had changed in the new editions), I used Sussex university’s online library collection and I immediately dropped a class that expected us to buy 3 books.

In my second term I felt forced to buy a book due to a particularly scary “proff” who used the book as the foundation of her course. As I had managed to dodge buying around 8 required books/ reading packs since starting at Ottawa, I knew that it would be my first and last purchase. I bought it from the bookshop on campus who promised to buy it back off me half price in order for them to sell it second hand which was a huge incentive. It ended up being well worth the money as it was both a fascinating book to read and imperative in order to stay on the good side of the scary proff. I then sold it back to the bookshop at the end of term which saved me money and valuable suitcase space.

Recently purchased book from Wordery

Recently purchased book from Wordery

It is perhaps the fact that I had let down my guard of never buying a book that I actually bought another one recently, upon starting my final year back at Sussex. And this time the purchase wasn’t even motivated by intimidation. It was a core reading for one of my modules and I thought that while I had found an online copy for free, I would enjoy reading it as it was a book it broad enough to be politically relevant to most of my studies and explains a theoretical concept important to engage with international relations today. Canada has changed me beyond recognition.

The student dream

I miss you, Canada

Posted in Accessing resources, Ebooks, Library, Printed, Reading lists, SAGE students

In a jungle of books

I had expected along with my acceptance letter an additional note, like in the Harry Potter books where it clearly states which book students had to purchase ahead of their year at Hogwarts. Like the disappointment of not receiving a Hogwarts letter, a list like that did not appear in my letterbox. Like any other future student, I had to log onto the Sussex page and scroll and roam around the wood of Study Direct like a lost sheep in order to find my reading lists. When I eventually found the reading list, my jaw dropped onto the floor. It was a list that never seemed to end. How I am supposed to afford all of this (!?) I thought to myself. A friend of mine from back home had told me the secret of student life in England and every student’s best friend (maybe except for a nap during the day) is Amazon. The endless opportunities to find cheap deals, and where textbooks range from freshly printed to those that have passed from student to student and are barely hanging on by a thread. Despite this, I realized that I was not going to order 10+ books. I decided to wait and ask my professor once I arrived at Sussex. Luckily for me, my professor did the work for us and spent the first introductory lecture guiding us through the reading. The professors in most of my lectures publish PDF documents for each week along with the reading, which is both handy and good for the environment (double luck!).

When finally deciding to purchase a textbook (see picture)sage1, it was due to the recommendation of my professor who said: “You’ll need this throughout the three years”. I thought to do my future self a favor and buy it at the beginning of the term instead of the time when your bank account is drained.

Secondly, in one of my politics courses, we could buy all of the 12 weeks of reading (printed and in weekly order) for a small amount. Included are all of the seminar and lecture topics and questions regarding those topics. I’ve only heard positive comments regarding this system from my course mates, who all agree on disliking reading from a computer. Instead, having the actual reading in front of you makes such a different when you’re either preparing for the essays or for the lectures. As you probably can see by the pictures below, this set of politics reading used to have a fancy front page but sadly lost it due to all the travels between lectures, seminars and the library.

sage2

(A complete set of in total of 12 weeks readings = happy and relieved student)

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This is the introduction to each week:

  1. Which week (Always good to know)
  2. What this week’s topic is
  3. Full and complete reference to each reading (This is like the holy grail when you are referencing an essay)
  4. The questions for discussion in the seminar

I would like to take this last paragraph to give my advice to future and current students at Sussex.  Sort the reading out when you arrive at university and don’t panic because other people have already bought their books. Listen to your professor’s recommendations because this will save you a lot of money. Most of the readings they post are specific chapters from a book – use the physical library or the online library to try and find the reading first before you decide to buy anything.

Posted in Ebooks, Library, Reading lists, SAGE students

The Pre Read

Before starting university, more often than not many schools like to send you a list of pre reading and suggested books for you to acquire over the summer, prior to your arrival at uni. I didn’t ever receive this list, and I’m not going to lie, this didn’t bother me at all. Unlike many other students I already had my login details to the Sussex system, so just to cover my back I logged into Sussex direct and checked out the module resources just to make sure I wasn’t just being completely oblivious and missing a large collection of essentials necessary for the coming year.

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When I clicked on the reading lists for the two that had them, all I discovered were a few more links to online resources.

screen-shot-2016-11-21-at-05-10-18Feeling as if I had put in enough effort to find any essential reading, I presumed the Global Studies department wanted us to enjoy our summer and worry about readings when the time is right. So I did exactly that, and had a great summer.

Greek Sunsets

Greek Sunsets

Then the start of uni came, I found out being the pioneers for sustainability that they are, the Global Studies department had recently invested in digital resources. This means that all the material we need for our course is now accessible online and via Study direct and the library resources, so no  excuse not to do a reading! (awesome, I know right)

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Good old Study Direct

Which basically means that 1. I was right to trust my instinct, and 2. Instead of spending £250 on books like law students do (soz guys), I can spend it on my first love, FOOD<3.

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My Beautiful Books. (Please ignore the cracks, I’m clumsier than I look)

So with no physical books to read, my mac and my iPad are all that I need.

The reading resources on Study Direct, are easier to find than you would expect.

(Okay I’m sorry 😂, the poem stops there, got a bit carried away)

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All the readings!

However the poem doesn’t actually lie, the reading resources for each module are posted on Study Direct under the specified weeks so you know exactly what you need to prepare.

And that’s exactly what I am, prepared (he claims), so thank you Global Studies!

Andre

Posted in Accessing resources, SAGE students

To buy, or not to buy

Multi-buy Bundle

“As if! Two-hundred pounds for a couple of text books?” was, as I recall, my initial reaction as I read the email from the School of Psychology. The email detailed a package deal on textbooks that was being offered to first year students; £199.99 for 5 psychology text books, saving me around £38 in total. The list of books included: An Introduction to Brain and Behaviour; An Introduction to Social Psychology; How to Design and Report Experiments; Discovering Statistics using IBM SPSS Statistics; and, How Children Develop.

I looked the books up on Amazon and to my surprise I found that a few of them were actually being sold for more money second hand than new, meaning it would be cheaper to buy the package deal offered by the university. Nonetheless, two hundred pounds isn’t an amount of money that I could easily justify spending – even on textbooks – and while I’m not one to turn down a decent saving, I eventually decided it would be best to wait until I got to Uni and find out how necessary the books were to the course, before I decided whether or not to buy them.

It is only recently, however, that I revisited the dilemma of whether or not to buy the text books. We’re eight weeks into the term, and I have been managing to get by without them fairly well. There’s the library for one, which has copies of a lot of the text books. But, aside from that, there are around 380 people doing psychology this term so most people are bound to know someone who does have a copy of the textbooks; more often than not, I have found people are willing to let me borrow theirs for a short while, or at least to send me pictures of the pages we need to read.

book

My copy of the textbook

Even if that wasn’t the case, a lot of the material we are required to read are articles which are provided online, and it’s only in the last few weeks that we’ve been asked to read passages from one of the text books – ‘An Introduction to Social Psychology’ by Miles Hewstone, Wolfgang Stroebe and Klaus Jonas – hence why I have been forced to revisit the to-buy-or-not-to-buy situation. Despite having access to the textbooks when I desperately need to, there are downsides to not having your own. For starters, I don’t have instant access to them, meaning that if I need to do some emergency ‘12 am the night before a seminar’ reading, I don’t have the means of doing so. It is also a lot harder to make notes and get a clear understanding of the text when you are reading from a picture off of your phone.

After a lot of deliberation, I eventually decided that implementing an ‘as and when’ policy was probably my best bet – the thought of spending £200 in one go was too much for my tightfisted brain to handle, even if it wasn’t necessarily the most inexpensive option. I decided to start with buying ‘An Introduction to Social Psychology’ from Amazon and then purchase any other books I may need further down the line. I thought I’d treat myself and buy a new copy as it was only a few pounds more than the 2nd hand one (ah – small luxuries), and having recently signed up to Amazon Prime Student for a 6-month free trial, the postage and packaging was free and the book arrived the next day! Even if you take nothing else away from this post, I would say that whether or not you decided to buy your books on amazon (if you decided to buy them at all),  I definitely recommend that you try out Amazon Prime Student, even if it’s only for the free trial*. As well as free delivery and discounts, you can also stream music and videos for free – what more do you need?

*Side note: if you do decide to try out Amazon Prime Student, and don’t want to pay after the 6-months, then make sure that you cancel your subscription before the trial ends!!!

Posted in SAGE students

Starting University: The Reading List

After buying half of Ikea, and ticking off that list to ensure there is nothing you have forgotten to buy, you finally feel prepared for university. That is until a friend or parent asks you about what books you need to buy for your new modules. Then it dawns on you, what books do you need to buy for your modules?

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Economics Reading List

The frantic search through your emails begins; checking and triple checking you haven’t missed the crucial email telling you that you were meant to read twenty books before term. With no luck you hastily move on to the Facebook fresher pages, “anyone else not received their reading list yet?”, with little to no response you preserve. The long search on Google commences and yet still nothing shows for 2016-17 first year reading list.

Finally you settle on looking at last years reading list and praying inside that nothing has changed too much. Upon first glance you notice that it is split into two sections per module; recommended and essential reading. Fortunately there is only one book listed as essential for each module, that wont be too expensive surely? A quick search on Amazon soon reveals that these five books are in fact very very expensive. Staring back at you is a basket total nearing £250 and a sudden panic as to how you are going to find the funds for these “essential” books.

Maybe I can ask for them as an early Christmas present?

Surely the library will have them in stock?

Perhaps I can find a second year to buy them off?

Yes that’s right, the second year who you will be eternally thankful to for the rest of your degree. Scrolling through one of the three “Official University of Sussex Freshers 2016-2017” pages you stumble across a few second years who have already begun selling, also begging, new freshers to buy their old textbooks.

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Message to a second year student

These books are selling at the sorts of prices students can actually afford;£20 a book, two for £45 and even a bundle of six for £100. After browsing trying to find the best offers, you start to write a comment showing interest in the book, following a short hesitation you decide to post it. After getting a reply you now know if your search has been successful or if the quest continues. Either way this means that you will not have your books before term commences; ensuring no pre-university reading will be taking place.

Upon getting to your first lecture you nervously ask around to see if anyone has done any summer pre-reading. With a sigh of relief you realise quickly that no-one else has been given or found the reading list for this year and you instantly feel more relaxed. However there is always that one person… At the beginning of the introductory lecture you find out whether the books you’ve just bought from a second year are useful and are surprised to find out all but one out of six are. Before the panic can set in you are reassured that the book you thought was useless is still relevant but there is a free copy of the new book for this year online on KorText.

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You finally feel ready and prepared for the semester ahead of you, all books bought and ready to read. Oh how wrong could you be. Then comes the elective! If you’re lucky you’ll only have one book if not you might have up to two or three books to purchase. The problem with an elective is that it is incredibly hard to find a second year student who has done the same elective as you and is willing to sell you the book at a reasonable price. The only resort is the university book shop or Amazon.

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Now you’ve eventually got everything bought and paid for, your bank account significantly less than you wanted it to be, and you can relax a little bit. However, not for too long as you now have to work out how on earth you’re supposed to read the books and still manage to take it all in. Good luck with that!

 

Posted in Freshers, Reading lists, SAGE students

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