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Adaptation of first-year students in universities and colleges: problems, peculiarities
Entering a university is a joyful and exciting event. And it is also an exit from the comfort zone and adaptation of freshmen to the new environment – student life.
Very often at this stage, first-year students have difficulties and fears. In this article we will tell you what are the problems of freshmen adaptation and share the secrets of a painless and successful adaptation of freshmen in high school.
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What is the adaptation of freshmen in high school
Adaptation (from Latin adaptare – to adapt) is the process of adapting to changing external and internal conditions. Human adaptation has two aspects: biological and psychological.
In the first months of their studies, first-year students face a number of difficulties:
- Learning new and more complex disciplines;
- lack of basic knowledge;
- unfamiliar system of organization of classes;
- the new team;
- being away from home and living independently;
- Inability to use finances rationally;
- lack of free time.
It takes a long time for a student to adjust to a new environment.
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Types of Freshman Adaptation in College and University
Psychologists distinguish a whole system of freshman adaptation. It comes in four types:
- Organizational. This type of adaptation involves a change in learning and living conditions, daily routine, teaching methods, rules of conduct in an educational institution, and an increased load. This type of adaptation is not easy. Because student life is quite different from school life. Over time, when a student gets used to a new schedule, teachers, and environment, organizational adaptation recedes into the background.
- Activity-Based. This kind of adaptation goes along with the organizational adaptation. During the active adaptation a student gets acquainted with new subjects, gets used to his/her new status (student), and learns his/her new rights and duties.
- Professional. Usually, this type of adaptation begins for students during the industrial and pregraduation internship. The student learns his or her chosen field from the inside, not only in theory. He gets acquainted with his duties, responsibilities, daily tasks. First-year students pass this type of adaptation formally, when they are told during classes what they will have to do.
- Social-psychological. Psychologists say that this is the most difficult type of adaptation. Sometimes even a specialist cannot predict how a person will behave during adaptation to new conditions. Social and psychological adaptation of freshmen involves the establishment of new personal and business relationships, gaining trust and disposition on the part of students and teachers.
Peculiarities of freshmen adaptation
The adaptation of first-year students is influenced by certain factors.
Sociological factors can include age, social status, education.
With age, adaptation passes and is perceived more easily. Young people are often ambitious, and it is more difficult to accept a new way of life. Because of their bright and unruly character, they may show resentment and resistance to the new regime.
First and foremost, the social adjustment of first-year students affects their relationships with one another. Misunderstandings may arise due to social status, religion, academic achievements (e.g., diplomas, medals, high USE scores).
The way freshmen adjust to college or university depends a great deal on their professors. Students’ motivation and interest depend on the attitudes and demands that professors place on them.
How a freshman adapts faster: helpful tips
To make the psychological adaptation easier, use our tips:
- Take the path of least resistance and accept everything as it is. There’s no turning back. You’re a freshman. And the sooner you realize this, the easier your adjustment will be.
- Plan your day. Make a diary and write out your entire day. It would seem what for, if you can print out a ready-made schedule of couples? But this narrows the field of your perception and will be more difficult to time. Write down clearly by the day how much time occupies classes, how many hours you need to spend on preparation for seminars, where you need to go or go on a trip. When you write down your day you will see that everything is not so terrible, and there is even time for leisure.
- Participate in the social life of the university or technical school. At the beginning of the year announcements are made, which activities you can join: KVN, student newspaper, theater, literary club, scientific section. Do not miss the opportunity to do something else besides studying. After all, you can not study all the time. A hobby fills and helps to unload the head. Remember an important rule: a good student is a rested student. So set priorities and allocate time for leisure.
- Do not be afraid of teachers. Divide your courses into those that you know well and those that cause difficulties. Don’t accumulate unaccomplished material. Approach your teacher and tell him about your difficulties. He will definitely give advice on how to learn the material better. And when you get the hang of it, you can adapt more quickly.
- Find friends. Adaptation will be easier in a circle of like-minded people. Look at the guys in the group. Do not be afraid to go first and talk. With good company, you’ll find studying easier and the time will be more fun.
- Set priorities. Studying is, of course, the main thing in college. But leave one day off without studies. Go out and socialize. Such a reset will help you take up your studies with renewed vigor.
- Remember, all difficulties are temporary. More than one generation of students have gone through an adjustment period. They have managed, so you will too.
- Often first year students try to shield themselves from the new environment and conditions and leave everything as it is. But this is impossible, and such a desire can lead to maladaptation. We need to remember: whether we want it or not, but the conditions are new, and to function in the former habitual mode is not possible.
For some 1st year students, adaptation lasts for a short time. But there are some first year students who take a long time to adapt. To make the process easier, seek help. For example, student services. Specialists will help you with any issue in any discipline.
Adaptation should not be confused with humility. For example, complete humility with poor living conditions or aggression from others. There is no need to get used to and adjust to the collective, where it is considered normal to be morally humiliated, self-assertion at the expense of colleagues, intrigues or mobbing? This should be fought.