£26 million, one building – Catalyst at Edge Hill University


Opening in 2018 the brand new Catalyst building at Edge Hill University has become a second home for most students who study at Edge Hill University. The stunning building provides almost every service imagineable to students and if you are planning to study at Edge Hill you will spend a serious amount of time here. So it might pay to have a read of this blog, because i’ll be sharing my own tips for using the building to its maximum potentional.


Image result for help deskHelpdesk support is avialable Monday to Friday 8am – 8pm and Saturday – Sunday 10am -6pm. They are always there to help and will do their best to point you in the right direction to any service that you need. If you have a problem, they will help.


Image result for printing and bindingPrinting and Binding is also available on every floor. Take advantage of the free binding services to make any of your projects look smart and presentable. If you have a presentation take in copies with a nice slick cover page and ring binder to hand out and you will have left the maximum impression on anyone in the room.


Image result for quietQuiet study on the top floor with a outlook over the roof gardens and campus. If you need some space to get work done pull up a chair at a table or computer and you will get whatever it is done. If you prefer some group study pods are available on the ground floor for up to 8 people with a presentation screen.


If you want to read more about the investment at the Catalyst you can read my other blog here:

Sean’s Random Encounters – Edge Hill Applicant Day and the Catalyst building


Or if you want to find out more about the new Catalyst building you can find information here.

And if you want more free and great advice email think@edgehill.ac.uk or leave a comment below and I will get back to you. If you want to suggest something to write about or want to be interviewed leave a comment below also and I will get back to you personally!

Tackling those pesky assignments! 💪🏽📝

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After just handing in one of the hardest assignments of this year, I feel like I didn’t do too badly. If you put in the prep and don’t leave it until last minute you’ll be surprised how much better you’ll do. I’m going to give you an insight on what our assignments are like on Primary Ed , they differ per course, and some tips that have helped me stay a little ahead of the workload.

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Start early and get to the library! 📚
This year we have eight assignments that roll one after another, so you’ll always have your head in at least one assignment. Some people overlap the assignments and can do two at a time, those people are magicians. When I start a new assignment I get a gist of what it’s about and head to the library to get as many books out as I can on the topic. They want you to show wider reading so using books and journal articles are the best way to prove this, and also get a better understanding of what’s going on.

Know what you have to do before you start note taking. 📝
There’s no point taking notes without knowing exactly what you need to do. For example, the assignment title I’ve just submitted asked us to ‘evaluate’, meaning we need to find the strengths, weaknesses and any contrasting perspectives. I do two things. Either, take notes on different books and articles then grab four highlights and assign a topic to each colour like strengths are highlighted in pink, weaknesses in yellow etc. Then if you need to find any strengths you can look through all your pink highlighting. Or, the second thing I’ve discovered helps kill some time is to write all the strengths together (with the reference at the end so you don’t forget who said it) and just flick through those points when writing. I’ve used both of these methods and they both help speed up my actual writing of the assignment. It may feel like a lot of preparation but it helps if you know exactly what you want/need to say so you can write the assignment a lot quicker. 

Be disciplined, overlap if you can. 🔮
Like I said before, magicians. It’s hard for me to overlap assignments but it’s not impossible. I like to focus all my attention on one thing but if I absolutely had to I would work on another at the same time. Fortunately, they given you enough time between them, but only if you’re on the ball. If you leave everything to last minute you’ll be pulling all-nighters in the library, so try and be disciplined with your time management. Know how much time you can have to yourself but put time aside to get work your work done.

Write when you are ready. 🤓
Sometimes I’ve said to myself, just write your introduction then it feels like you’ve done something, but then it ends up being that much waffle you could pour syrup on it. It’s much better, like I said before, to write when you know exactly what you want to say.

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Edge Hill University offer workshops and services for students that are struggling with writing, referencing, note-taking and many more academic skills. They’re always around the library ready to answer questions. There’s a huge support system here at Edge Hill and I’m very grateful to be here.

Thanks for reading! Don’t hesitate to leave any questions ☺️

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What’s the First Week of Uni Like?

Hey everyone, since it’s the time of the year where prospective students are submitting applications for uni. I’m going to continue along the theme of some of my previous blogs talking about preparing for university, by talking about the first week, also known as Welcome Week.


If you choose to stay on campus walking into your new room for the first time is one of the craziest things, it’s exciting and scary in equal measure. The student realisation that your parents aren’t going to well, parent you all the time was for me a really surreal feeling. The next thing you will want to do is meet all your other flatmates, I already talked about this in a previous blog so I won’t go on but if there are people in the kitchen just talk to them, it makes life much less awkward in the coming days.


There is loads of stuff going on over Welcome week from fun day activities to events in the evening held in the SU. In my first year we had things like inflatables and mini gold during the day, and disco’s and dj’s like Kristian Nairn (Hodor from GOT) in the night. In the first week Edge Hill does go all out on its events so if you want to, go out and enjoy them because they are there for the students anyways! Don’t feel like you need to go out every night for the first week, I mean you can but, I’d rather not.


As well as the various events throughout the day. You will also begin your course, don’t worry though they ease you in nicely. I had a couple of lectures/classes where things were fairly casual, just talking about what we would be doing throughout the year, sorting timetables things like that. Nothing to warrant any studying or much work, yet. I do Film and TV Production and so we had a media challenge that we could take part in, just a basic ice-breaker to get us used to classrooms and our course mates etc.


Before you know it the first week will be over and you will probably be reasonably well settled in. It’s ok to still be adjusting as it’s a big change from home life, but if you are still struggling after a while then there are counselling services on campus that are available if you’re needing help. But overall the first week is chill just take it easy and hopefully enjoy it!

Jordan

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House hunting tips! 🏡💸

As a first-year who ignored all advice given to me, I feel I have some important dos and don’ts when house hunting for the second year. It’s more of a ‘don’t do what I did!’ kind of situation, so here are some tips when looking for a house… and please take them on board.

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Don’t rush 🙅🏽 .. well, not too much:
We were told not to rush as the housing fair would be in a couple of weeks and there, you can have a look around, ask questions and gather all the information you need to know about housing for the next year. We didn’t do this, we found one that we liked and booked an appointment. This was a mistake as I’ll explain shortly. I would say wait until the housing fair but then definitely get gathering mates and start looking at what’s available. The McCombe apartments go quite fast but if you have booked viewings and are looking at contracts before Christmas, you’re on the right track. There’s a list of off-campus housing lettings agencies on the Edge Hill website here.

Don’t be pressured into anything💪🏽:
There can be some pressure from certain letting agencies about their first-come-first-serve system but my advice is: do not be forced into signing anything without properly reading the contract, understanding the payments and knowing the contract length. We were caught out here as we rushed to get back to a lesson and we skimmed over the contract, signed it and got out of there, now we’re paying a large amount over what most people are… so be careful! Ask if you can take the contract away and read it closely.

It’s not all doom and gloom! 😁
Luckily, Edge Hill has a great support system if you are unsure of anything. You can take your contract to student services and they will look over it for you before you sign anything and they hold housing workshops that you can attend if you are still unsure of anything.  Apart from that, find some cool people you want to live with and get house hunting.

There are some amazing houses around although ours is costing a little more than we’d like, it’s absolutely stunning and I’m looking forward to living there next year. Please don’t hesitate to ask questions, I’m here to answer any you may have! Thanks for reading ☺️

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A look back on 2018 – My three top tips from the year past at EHU

A look back on 2018


2018 was an exciting year at Edge Hill University and I don’t think it would be complete if we didn’t take a look back over the last 12 months and give a few mentions to a few of the things that made everyone’s lives a little more special. So many things happened that you could be here til next year listing them so let’s keep this brief and drive right into, three top tips from the year past.


Shoot for the stars

In the year past we saw elections in March and in November at our students union. Big shout out to all of those who put themselves forward. I actually interviewed a number of candidates and heard their voices loud and clear. If there is one thing that people like Jack Fields, Molly Smallwood and Craig-Francis Meichan have shown its that speaking out for what you believe in will often yield many similar minds behind your cause.


Don’t leave it up to chance

Absolutely no point whatsoever in wanting something, but not badly enough to work for it. 2018 held many truths like this for me. I have to admit I didn’t work for much, maybe my license but that’s about it. If you want something then you need to get out there and fight for it. In fact i’m sick of saying it, I feel like my last 5 blogs have all touched on this, but trust me its important. I don’t know who needs to hear this, but just go do whatever it takes to get what you want.


Forget everything and be yourself

Right this one really goes out to you, yeah the one person who is reading this blog. No idea who you are, or how you even got here, but listen up. You might think this sounds corny or you might think it’s just a dumb piece of writing on the internet. You’re wrong. I’ve spent my whole life trying to fit my square personality into other peoples triangle shaped lives but in 2018 I stopped. I’ve never been happier to be myself and not care one bit about what others have to say behind my back. So, take my advice or don’t. Either way, I don’t really mind.


That’s everything. Just one more thing before you go.

Happy new year.

 If you want more free and great advice email think@edgehill.ac.uk or leave a comment below and I will get back to you. If you want to suggest something to write about or want to be interviewed leave a comment below also and I will get back to you personally.

Staying on course – Keeping your sights set on University

Staying On Course


Reminding yourself time and time again that every social event or 8 hour sleep that you miss is going to be worthwhile can be exhausting. Trust me. Keeping your eyes on the prize for months on end really can become a futile task, but there are a few ways that you can keep your sanity and almost live to tell the tale of how you got the grades you wanted, made your first choice and finally exited the vicious circle that is education before University.


Meet your deadlines

Deadlines exist for a reason. We all hate them, I actually think that if we didn’t have deadlines we would probably get our work done sooner, and better. The fact is, however, that we are usually given deadlines for our work. These deadlines are there to keep us in check, and as much as we hate them they cannot be ignored. Get your work done, and you won’t have to stress over it. Start things with plenty of time to spare, and finish up as soon as you can.


Study as much as you can

Exams are a killer. In fact if you study in the UK count yourself lucky. Some places, like my own Ireland, don’t use coursework based assessment and students have between 6 and 10 exams at the end of their final year that will determine what university they get into. Exams are great though. As much as you might protest about them don’t think of exams as a test of memory, think of them as a test of knowledge. If you are confident, and understand your course exams won’t be a problem. Finally, study how you learn. Youtube videos count as study if they are on the topic!


Relax, dont stress

Alright. So if you are meeting your deadlines, getting your work done well and on time and keeping up on your revision you have the whole assessment covered. But you cant let yourself burn out. If you end up feeling like the whole world is pushing down on you all you will be thinking about is how much you hate learning and that’s not what you hate. You hate feeling like you are learning for someone else. Take plenty of breaks, get good sleep and don’t put yourself out there for anyone else. Do your thing, for you.


That’s everything. If you want to learn more about dealing with stress you can check out my other blog post here.

Dealing with Stress at University – Stress is like the flu, everyone usually gets it

And if you want more free and great advice email think@edgehill.ac.uk or leave a comment below and I will get back to you. If you want to suggest something to write about or want to be interviewed leave a comment below also and I will get back to you personally!

My first term at University 👩‍🎓📚

Hello!

It’s very strange to think that I’ve been at University for thirteen weeks now. Time really does fly when you’re having fun. We broke up the Friday just gone, I don’t think it’s the same for everyone but the Primary Ed guys have all finished for the year. My parents flew back from Saudi and came to pick me up from University, we’re having Christmas at their UK house this year! Of course, I over packed. We have an assignment due over Christmas and lots to do before placement in January so I feel like I’ve packed the entirety of my uni work.

If you’re a prospective Primary Ed student then this post is for you. This post is a little insight into how the first term went in my first year and what I’m doing over Christmas to plan for next term.

The seminars, lectures and the workload👩🏽‍🎓:

The timetables change each year so what my timetable looks like this year may well be different to yours but this will give you a gist of what an average week looks like. Firstly, we have Mondays off – I know, it’s the best. Then we have our Minor seminar for 2 hours on Tuesday, Foundation Subjects seminar for 3 hours on Wednesday (sometimes with a FS lecture after), Thursday and Friday are the longest days with English, Maths, Science, Computing and APD seminars mixed in.  It’s a nice balanced timetable that gives you a long weekend to chill and spend some time socialising but then also gives you a lot of time to get some work done.

The workload is manageable but challenging. As long as you organise and manage your time well and do your best not to miss any seminars or lectures you’ll be fine. I’ve really enjoyed my first term and I’ve managed to pull myself to seminars when I was exhausted and just didn’t want to get out of bed, but I always did because they’re always so fun and engaging. I’m not in university now until placement and I know I’m going to miss it! ☹️

The assignments📝📚:

I’ve handed in three so far. The next one is a whopping 3,500 on APD that’s due in January. This scared me to start with but the my biggest tip for you is to get in the library! They have so many books available and I managed to get a load before I came back so I’ve been reading through them and I feel a lot more prepared and ready to knock this out over the Christmas period. They vary from 750 words to 3,500 words and they’re all set in a different kind of style which I love. They are challenging but not at all impossible, they also make me feel very intellectual and academic 🤓!

Placement 👩🏽‍🏫:

Out first placement starts in January, last year it started in November so yours could be a different time too. I just recently found out where I’m going for mine this year and I’m really excited. I took a regional opportunity and I’m heading down to the Peak District. With the situation I’m in I honestly didn’t care where I went but my heart felt this was the right place and luckily I got it. They can’t always guarantee you what and where you want but they do their best!

So over the Christmas period, as you can see, I have some work to do. They encourage you not to work over the two weeks the University is closed for, and I’m sure some people will, but if you’re like me and you want to be as prepared as possible, I’m sure your desk will look like mine!

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading! See you next time 💕

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Balancing your time – Work, play and study at Edge Hill University


Balancing time can be a challenge at the best of times. At university you might find you have less than you imagined, especially if you are trying to have a vibrant social life while working a part time job. I wanted to share three tips of mine to try and help you balance your time and keep yourself chilled out so you can be the best version of you.


Keep track

If you are trying to balance the time you have between a few tasks such as work and study you might find it easier if you keep a list or a schedule of the amount of time you have to dedicated to each. Maybe you will find you are spending way to much time on one.


Stick to your plans

If you make plans to do something you should stick to it. Even if that means going out. If you keep to your schedule you will find that you actually get more work done. Just because you go to the library for 6 hours doesn’t mean you get 6 hours work done. Most of the time you spend 5 and a half thinking about what else you could be doing instead.


Enjoy what you do

This is the hardest of them all but the most important. If you don’t actually like what you are doing then why would you ever want to do it. If you are working, work in a way that you like. If you are studying, then study how you enjoy doing it (Pro tip: Watch YouTube videos on the topic). Finally, if you go out then go out how you want. Don’t go to places you don’t want to be and drink what you want, not the strongest cheapest thing there is.


That’s everything. Take these three things and you will be happier, trust me. If you want to learn more about dealing with stress you can check out my other blog post here.

And if you want more free and great advice email think@edgehill.ac.uk or leave a comment below and I will get back to you. If you want to suggest something to write about or want to be interviewed leave a comment below also and I will get back to you personally

Preparing to Leave Home

Hi everyone, for my second blog I’m just going to talk a little about moving out of home for the first time and going to University, and what you can do to prepare to make the transition more manageable, enjoyable and hopefully A lot less stressful!

1. Pack early: I know this might seem obvious but starting your packing even a week before leaving home is a really good idea, trust me. You don’t realise until it comes to packing how much stuff you need to bring with you, clothes, gadgets, trinkets and whatever else begin to pile up really quickly. In my personal experience even though I had done most of my packing by the time I was ready to leave, I still found myself running around like a headless chicken looking for my headphones and whatever else I realised I would definitely need.

Bag

2. Book travel well in advance: Doing this not only saves a lot of stress but also a lot of money. Obviously depending on where you live or your travel situation circumstances will be different but if you know you will be travelling by train or boat or plane, booking earlier can save you a lot of hassle that can be caused by booked up journeys or lack of luggage, space say if you were going on a busy flight and needed cabin baggage. In my experience if you book for example, A flight a month beforehand which in my case was coming over from Northern Ireland, an early booked flight would only usually cost £10/20 but leave it too close to the date and you could end up paying more like £50/60 which is a LOT more if you’re a budgeting student.

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3. Don’t worry if your late: I know you definitely want to arrive on time for your moving in day and you most likely will, but on the off-chance you don’t (like me) don’t stress, Edge Hill is very accommodating and even though I was one of the last people to pick up my keys, someone still took the time to show me to my accommodation where I finally arrived to meet my flatmates for the first time, which didn’t make any difference that I was late as everyone was also still pretty nervous! Moral of the story, chill out it will be fine :).

First Year Room Tour – Chancellors South

Hello again! ☺️ Today I’m going to give you a little insight and into my room here at Edge Hill and some tips for living comfortably at university. I’m in my first year so I’m on campus living in Chancellors South. The accommodation is absolutely stunning, all over campus, and I feel very lucky to live here.

I’ve always tried to make my space as comfortable and cosy as possible and my uni room was no different. A lot of the stuff you can see is from a shop called The Range – this is a great place to get some cheap decor for your room to make it feel a little more homely. Primark is another good place, I got my bedding and hot water bottle from there and they sell really nice reed diffusers to keep your room smelling nice! 💕

One thing I will suggest is to bring a fan, those rooms are wonderful in the winter because they’re so insulated but in the spring and summer months it can get hot and having a fan definitely helps. I use the door to the bathroom  as a whiteboard which is really great to keep on top of your to-do list, just make sure you don’t buy or use permanent markers 😖! I’ll note here, Chancellors South provide a full length mirror – I nearly bought one until I saw a YouTube video explaining that they provide one!

Due to the wonderful Catalyst, we don’t have computers in our rooms but we still have the TVs ☺️! The desk is nice and spacious and the space behind the TV is all cork-board so get some pushpins to hang the important stuff up. I brought my printer but the ink can get expensive so it’s easier and cheaper to just use the Catalyst, if I’m honest. The draws are also really spacious, I’ve added a picture to show you my ‘work’ one:

The little pot in the bottom right hand corner is where I keep all my paracetamol, antihistamine, blisters and flu stuff – bring this, you are bound to get the fresher flu! I also brought a little sewing kit that you can see in the middle near the top, I have used this a handful of times now so it’s good to have around. ✂️

In Chancellors South we have a designated house keeper that comes in Mon-Fri to give the place a little dust, hoover and mop. She doesn’t do our rooms, just the kitchen and hallway, so I keep a little box of cleaning products in my room for when I need to give my place a dust or clean my bathroom. 🚿

The bathroom is set out like a wet room so I keep my towels on the back of the door using this over the door hanger I got from B&M. I also got a cheap standing wire storage holder to put all my shampoos and body soaps in! B&M have some really good products for storage. 😊

The accommodation is really stunning and it’s no surprise that it is award-winning. The wardrobe space is great and it includes a mini fridge to hide all your chocolate or expensive food. There’s storage under your bed to keep boxes, shopping bags or shoes. The storage in the kitchen is excellent too but that’s for another post 😃. I hope you have enjoyed this and I hope it has given you a better insight into the accommodation for Chancellors South. See you next time! 💕

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