Reflecting on Term 1, Year 2 – OurWarwick

Reflecting on Term 1, Year 2

Sophie Frankpitt | English Language and Linguistics with Intercalated year Contact Sophie

Last term was one of the best terms I’ve had here at Warwick. That’s probably down to it also being the free-est, least Covid-y term, equipped with some in-person teaching and social events. As ever, I’ve come away from the term armed not only with new Linguistics knowledge, but with better ideas about how to have a good, well-rounded university experience. 

  1. Remember what you’ve managed to do before 

Starting university again after a summer without doing the degree is sometimes a bit nerve-wracking. Remembering things like how to reference or how to keep on top of the reading takes practise, and coming back to it can feel a little daunting. The thing that really helped me was remembering that I’d done it before, and I’d be able to do it all again. 

Likewise, the end of Term 1 was a little rocky. Nerves around Omicron felt particularly heightened given what happened this time last year – what felt like the longest lockdown ever and not being able to return to university in Term 2. This year, my friend and I regularly facetimed over Christmas, and in anticipation of the worst, made plans for things we could do in our uni house if another lockdown were to hit (things like baking nights, arts and crafts, online exercise classes). Whilst we obviously didn’t end up in lockdown (yay!), I found that managing my nerves around Covid could pretty much only be lessened by remembering that we’d got through difficult Covid months before, and we had all the resources to deal with it again, if we had to. 

2. Make a list of things you want to try during the term 

During the lockdown this time last year, my friends and I made a list of Warwick-related things we wanted to do experience once we were allowed to – things like Pop, circling, seeing Rolf (the campus cat), or going to Birmingham. We brought the tradition of making a list before each term outside of lockdown too, because it means we try different things – like visiting Stratford at the weekend, or trying a new society. It’s a good way to record your new experiences at university, and is a fun way to plan what to do in your free time.

3. Start your summative assignments early. Really early. 

At the start of term, I wasn’t too well and was a little worried about how I’d manage the inevitable load of assignments that would begin to pile up towards the end of term. In anticipation of this, I started most of my summatives really early. I had ideas for what I wanted to study, and conducted data collection, in good time so that I could talk to the lecturers if I needed to, and wouldn’t be scrambling at the end of term to tie up loose ends. Whilst I still had most of the work at the end of term, having what felt like a headstart on the work was really invaluable. I felt on top of the work (kind of), and it gave me time to slowly collate my ideas and read around my topics.

4. Make use of advice hours

Another academic piece of advice, but one that cannot be underrated. I find that I’m most innovative when talking through my ideas. And the best part about talking through ideas with a lecturer is that they can keep you on track. My problem has and probably always will be the desire to take on more work than is necessary for a task, and it’s helpful sometimes to have someone with more experience to pull me out of my own Linguistics world back into reality. 

5. Leave time to rest and do nothing 

This is possibly one of the most important things I’ve had to learn to do over the last few months. Sometimes just doing nothing is exactly the break we need to refuel. It’s easy to plan when you’re going to seminars, or doing assignments, or going clubbing, but it’s a lot harder to remember to make time just to rest. And there’s no getting away from the fact that university is pretty exhausting. The best way I’ve found to have a healthy, balanced and fun time at university is to make sure that I’m not over-doing it. 

Term 1 was a lovely welcome to a slightly more normal, less pandemic-y version of Warwick, and I’ve loved getting to know this new side to university life. And I’m excited for everything that Term 2 has to offer.  

Sophie Frankpitt | English Language and Linguistics with Intercalated year Contact Sophie

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