Monday, 28 November 2016

Things to know for open days !!!!!

Hey guy's, it's that time of year again OPEN DAYS !!

So with that in mind I have a new post for you guys. A list of all the essentials for open days. Stick to this list to get the most out of your experience.

Know when each open day is 

Pretty self explanatory. If you don't know when each open day is you can't plan ahead of time which ones to visit. Take this time to mark out exactly what weekend each prospective college is. Try and go to every college you are interested in or even may be interested in. Who knows when you get there you might love what you see.

Pick a list of courses you like and plan to go to each stand

This is the same as above. Basically don't go to open days unprepared trust me you will regret it. I did this at the first open day I went to. Thankfully it was not my first choice because I absolutely wasted my time. I missed the lectures that I wanted to see because I went too late and had no idea what stands I was interested in so I just walked around for a while looking at random stands. When I went to my chosen college DIT I had a much better plan of exactly what I wanted and it was a very productive day. Check out the college website for details on the event.

Talk to lecturers or students

Each course will have a representative stand at open days. Usually there will be a lecturer and student of that course there to hep answer your questions. These are the people you want to ask the questions listed above because they know the course the best. Don't be nervous to ask question's, people will be happy to help.

Make a list of questions for each

I did this when I was going to open days, and I am so glad I did. Turns out I was not looking at the right courses for what I job I wanted. Thankfully the lovely people in DIT that day were really helpful and guided me towards the course I should have been looking at. A list of questions to ask at open days could be , what society's are on offer, what size are the classes, Does this course give me the opportunity to do Erasmus or work experience.

Make sure to see whats socs on offer

You don't just have to find out about academic stuff ! Take this time to learn what extra's your college offers. For example DIT has a free doctor that for me was a huge plus. Find out what societies and clubs are on offer, what about extra help. Like the DIT maths learning center, it's basically free grinds for DIT students.

Enjoy yourself and remember everyone is just as nervous as you are. If you get lost or have a question to ask look for a student ambassador they usually wear big jackets with "student ambassador " on the back.

Saturday, 19 November 2016

Things I wish I knew in 6th year

Hi guys,

As you may know next week starts the open days for colleges in Ireland. This got me thinking back to my own time in 6th year and honestly how awful it was !! I, as a lot of my friends did, had a horrible time in 6th year. Every time I hear that the exams are starting in June I always feel so sorry for the thousands of student killing themselves every year.

Thinking back now there are a lot of things I wish I knew back then. So I decided to write them down for you guys in the hopes that it helps even one person be a little less stressed and feel a bit better.

The first thing I wish I knew is that failing is Ok ! I mean it's not that I wasn't told this by teachers, parents and friends. It's one thing to agree with someone but to actually accept with yourself that it is Ok to fail can sometimes be a little bit harder. I can honestly say that it has taken me till my second year of college to be happy with whatever grade I get because I know I've done my best. And I think if I had accepted this sooner then I would have been less stressed and enjoyed 6th year a bit more.

The second and most important thing is to never ever let anybody tell you that you are not capable of doing whatever you want to!!!!

When I was in 6th year I had a guidance counselor who I would go to every week. I wanted to study science and I would go to her with questions about that course like what job could I expect to get from that particular course and every week I would get the same answer. That someone who did only 4 higher level subjects was not capable of getting the points for science. She also told me that because I did ordinary maths I would find it extremely different to study science in college. She told me to forget universities and only look towards FETAC colleges. Now this does not mean FETAC colleges are in anyway less important.( I ended up doing both).

Well I refused to believe I was incapable of such things. I took it as a personal challenge that I would get into a university. I knew what points realistically I was capable of getting I wrote down a number I would be happy with and that is exactly the number of points I received. I got my place in DIT but decided to defer for a year and do a FETAC college for a year. (Best decision of my life) 

The third is that the leaving cert system in no way reflects your own intelligence. There are actually seven levels of intelligence I won't list and explain them all now but you can easily google them if you wish. I am the kind of person who is very practical minded and logical. I do well in science because I like figures and problem solving. I am not however good and languages. I always did very badly at writing in particular. Einstein said if you judge a fish on its ability to climb a tree it will forever walk around thinking it is stupid. Basically we all have our strengths and weaknesses and we just need to be aware of them and play to our strengths.

I realise this post is a bit more of a personal one but sometimes things need a personal touch. I hope that this post will help to inspire you to think proudly of yourself and your abilities and to never judge your abilities based on someone else's opinion.

Wednesday, 9 November 2016

How to improve your grades.

Hey guys, we are half way through the semester now so you should have some indication of how your doing in college. If your not happy with your results but feel like your trying your best you should really evaluate exactly what you are doing.

For example I could read ten pages of notes and know them off by heart but if I cant put that information into a question then I don't actually understand it and that's not studying right. I made that mistake for a long time when I was in school and it took me actually sitting down and writing out exactly how I study to see what I was doing wrong.

So if you are struggling with your grades and want some tips here are a few of the easiest ones.

Ask your lecturer where you are going wrong

I understand that a lot of people would be nervous when approaching a lecturer but you shouldn't be. These people are here to help you with your education and what's more is that they want to help. I know I can go to anyone of my lecturers when I am struggling and they will do their best to help me. Maybe you have a specific lecturer you get on well with maybe you could go to them if you are having trouble in a class.

Read feedback you have already gotten

A lot of my lecturers will give detailed feedback on reports I have handed up. It is so important to read these points and make sure you don't make the same mistakes again because that will annoy your lecturers. The point of doing these reports is to learn from past mistakes, a lot of times what's in the report is also likely to come up in a written exam.

Look at exam papers

Ok so I sound like a broken record but honestly this is the holy grail to doing well. Lecturers rarely change a paper drastically. So if you can do an exam paper you can definitely do the exam. I always use exam papers. I find exam papers so helpful for classes I miss. I use the questions to show me what topics I missed and the I look that up in books or on Youtube.

Ask your friends for help

This is by far the easiest option. Your friends will want to help you but don't be selfish. What I mean by that is people will happily help you if you are confused or need some extra info but they will not help if you just couldn't be bothered to study and expect everyone else to pull you along. Having a study group is a good idea because even if two people sit in the same class the information they retain can be very different. So they can look at the same topic in a different perspective.

For lab assignments follow the format given to you

This is by far the most common way people loose marks. Trust me I have gone up two grades by simply changing my format around. Every lab instructor will have a different style of marking and will look for a different format. Usually the preferred format will be given to you on day one, stick to it !! What I mean by format is reference style, the key paragraphs, spacing, font size and some may look for an abstract.

Saturday, 5 November 2016

My top fall must have's

I really love watching must have videos on Youtube or reading them on other blogs. And anyone who knows me knows I loveeeee fall. I mean what's not to love, comfy jumpers, layering clothes, dark lips. So here are some of the pieces I couldn't live without for autumn winter.

Boots, boots boots !!!!!

wether its ankle boots or  knee highs, boot's are the single biggest statement piece for fall. I live in Ireland so you kind of wear boots all year round anyway because it rains like 90% of time. But when you get into fall you have a bit for flexibilty with your boots, I mean kylie jenner  can rock a knee high in July but for most of us that's just not appropriate. So when fall comes I make the most of my more daring picks. Of course I want my boots to look nice but if they aren't comfortable they are not for me. I waited like 3 weeks for penney's to get this boot in and immediately bought them when I could. However I've only wore them once and that is all I will be wearing them because they are the single most uncomfortable shoe I have ever owned. It's like the person who made them hate's feet and wants them to die. ( anyone get that friends reference ;) ).

Black jeans or leggings

Again this is something that can really be worn anytime of the year. I really wanted a pair of high waist black jeans for a while, to wear with crop tops on nights out instead of freezing in a dress in December  !! After a few weeks of searching I found a great pair in ZARA for only 25 euro.

A dark lipstick

Ladies I have said it many, many times that a bold lip can absolutely transform a look. If  you want to make a statement a bold lip like a burgundy shown in the picture below can really go a long way. I am no makeup artist and I find that focusing on my lip instead of eyes is far easier. You can simply put a little gold shadow and some basic eyeliner on and paired with a bold lip makes it look like you spent a lot of time on it when in reality you just shoved it on on the bus on the way to college . # for the win.

A warm coat

Here in Ireland you just can't survive winter without a good coat, FACT. Every Irish woman has at least one. If your like me you probably have that one faithful coat that always finds it's way back into my winter wardrobe every year. My favourite so far is this cape I got as a gift.

Beanies, hats and scarves.

That was a bit long for a heading and it's self explanatory ha. I personally thing there is nothing cuter than being wraped up in a cute and scarf combo. Not to mention it's super practical. My favourite this year is this infinity scarf from penney's. You know when your in bed and you pull the covers up around your neck and fell super comfy that's exactly what this scarf feels like. I love this when I am in the library studying. Here are some of my favourite's.