High school grades are out, University offers in! You may be sitting at your screen wondering “should I do Biomedical Science or Health Science..?” Well, here at SAMS, we’ve got a disclaimer: we’re probably slightly biased towards Biomedical Science! :P
Biomed (compared to Healthsci)
Go click “accept” on whichever programme you fancy here: apply.auckland.ac.nz
Now that you’ve clicked “accept”, you now have to enrol in your papers. Think of each of these papers like the “subject choices” you had back in High School - except, for 1st year, you have very little choice. And because there are 1000+ of y’all, the University has come up with a great system to make it nice and easy for you!
Go to student.auckland.ac.nz > click “Enrol” > click “Add Classes with” > “Timetable Planner” > then click timetable planner again > now you’ll enter a nice little app where you should be able to see the “Search by Cohort” button where you can preview all the possible options available to you.
Tip: you can try to get a timetable with nothing on Wednesdays because it cuts down on the number of days you need to come in to Uni – esp. if you live far away!
Another tip: you might have a choice between morning or afternoon stream for lectures where the approximate times are 8am ~ 12pm vs 2pm ~ 5pm. Note that if you’re in the morning stream for lectures, then your lab will be in the afternoon. Given that lectures occur far more often, this is what you should be thinking about – whether you’re a morning person or if you like to sleep in (like me!). However, sometimes, depending on the availability of labs, you don’t get a choice!
Reminder: after you have sent the papers to the enrolment cart, make sure you actually enrol! You’ll see that they ask you to pay for stuff but don’t get too fussed; you don’t need to pay immediately! –as long as you pay (or get your Studylink sorted) before the start of semester (e.g. late-Feb / early March), all will be fine :)
Another Reminder: It’s a good idea to enrol in Semester 2 papers now! They fill up quickly and if you don’t enrol, it can get annoying for you later!
GEN-ED: As you might realise, you have the one choice of selecting what gen-ed paper to pick! There are usually 2 camps of advice: (i) pick what you’re genuinely interested in, or (ii) pick the “easiest” option. I’d just like to point out that the “easiest” option, assuming “easiness” is judged by how good your grades can be, is usually highly correlated with interest :P. It’s difficult to know whether your interest in something means that you’ll do better in it, or if because you’re good at something, you’ll be more interested in it! What I personally would recommend is that you pick an option that doesn’t take up a lot of time. Subjects which have a lot of coursework components (e.g. mid-sem test + quizzes + multiple assignments) can take up excessive amounts of time that you might not have. Try to aim for a subject with minimal coursework components to make sure you can maximise your study time for your more important papers! (Of course, if you are genuinely interested in a certain subject, don’t let us preclude you from taking it!) I think you may find that choosing a light coursework paper will allow you to enjoy the paper, as well as maximise your study time for your core papers.
Suggestions: PHIL 105G, ECON 151G, INTBUS 151G, MUS 144G, EDUC 121G, EDUC 122G.
Many of these have been suggested in the past! Have a search for them on Google/the UoA website and see if they interest you :)
Lastly, your timetable: just a brief introduction to Uni/Life Scheduling.
Timetable: There are 2 semesters. There are 12 taught weeks per semester, split in the middle with a 2-week mid-semester break. The 12 weeks can therefore be designated as “odd” (Weeks 1, 3, 5, etc.) or “even” (Weeks 2, 4, 6, etc.), so you can expect your lab stream to be consistently either “odd” or “even” for each paper, as labs are held fortnightly. The week prior to and after the mid-semester break (USUALLY week 6 and week 7) are “test weeks”, with many papers having mid-semester tests around this time. For 2018 Semester 1, the mid-semester break is after Week 5, so you’ll have a 5-2-7 structure: 5 weeks of classes, 2 weeks break, then 7 weeks of classes. After 12 weeks of classes, there’s typically a 1-month exam period (although Biomed/Healthsci usually finishes pretty early).
There are lecture and lab components for each “paper”/ “course”/ “subject” (i.e. BIOSCI 107 is a “paper”, “course”, or “subject”). It consists of 3 lectures a week and one 3-hour lab every 2 weeks - this is typical for most papers. Lecture attendance is not typically compulsory so you could technically not attend any lectures and just watch the recorded lecture – however: (i) the lecture recording system fails from time to time, and (ii) it is seriously super recommended to just go to the lecture! Labs, on the other hand, are compulsory to attend and attendance is taken.
Anyhow! That’s about it from us! Ask us anything in the FB group or at our FB page and we’ll respond ASAP! Otherwise, there’s still like a month and a half until University starts, so kick back and relax :)
Next time, we’ll be talking about the High School to Uni transition and study tips ^_^
Hi everyone and welcome to SAMS’ Common Year 1 Blog 2018!
We are the Student Association for the Medical Sciences (SAMS) and made up of medical science students primarily advocating and catering to the academic, social, and welfare needs of all (past, present, and future) medical science (MEDSCI) students at the University of Auckland! We write this particular blog to include both opinion and factual pieces to share experiences, give advice, and offer perspectives for this popular yet daunting Common Year 1!
This blog will have inputs by many guests all of whom have been through the infamous Common Year 1 (AKA “Biomed/Healthsci 1st year”); but all content will be authored or edited by a team of us here at SAMS. We have been helped by others and are simply trying to #payitforward!
First and foremost, this blog is here to help YOU. With over 1000 Common Year 1 students, you often might feel drowned out through all the rabble but I want to assure you that we are here to help; every single one of you lovely people!
Lastly, just a little opinion: Common Year 1 is definitely an interesting year – not only are you entering University for the first time, but you are entering one of the more intensive and challenging degrees of all the available University degrees. People often say that first year is competitive and very pressured; perhaps it is – I personally thought it was a little. But I think the best way to view this is more as a journey of self-discovery and self-improvement – try to be the best version of yourself, don’t excessively compare yourself to others, and make the most of your time here!
‘Nuff said – until next time, we’ll be talking more about Enrolling and what University is like in general!