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Preparing for University

This course explores and develops key analytical skills that students need in order to succeed at university learning environment.

81,970 enrolled on this course

Students preparing for university
  • Duration

    6 weeks
  • Weekly study

    3 hours

Higher education is about learning at a higher level: developing skills relating to critical thinking; holding a supported, substantive argument; analysing and using data or sources critically. These are university-level skills but you can work on the foundations of these skills before you get there. Such skills will also help in assessments such as A-levels and extended project work. They are also attributes that employers value in graduates.

In this course you will explore some key skills needed for success at university. You will hear what university lecturers have to say about skills their students excel at, or struggle with, from undergraduates about areas they have found difficult and some top tips for coping with the university learning environment.

At the end of each week there will be an exercise where you will be self-critical and reflect on your progress. These are such important skills for university because they form the basis of independent learning. Each week you will interact with others on the course, compare progress, help those who might be struggling, gain advice and support if you are struggling, and share your thoughts via discussions.

By completing this online course you will be able to:

  • explore the skills needed to do well at university
  • engage with the key skills required for success at university
  • identify with what university lecturers have to say about skills their students excel at or struggle with
  • explore what lecturers value in their students
  • collect top tips for coping with the university learning environment

This course will also prepare you well for the teacher-led ‘Pre-university Skills Programme’.

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What topics will you cover?

  • Questioning in a university environment
  • Links between independent study, revision and reading skills
  • Using and acknowledging the work of others through referencing
  • Data and its applicability to university study
  • Textual analysis and how literary texts are studied
  • Structuring thoughts and ideas and its importance at university level

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and join a global classroom of learners. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

  • Available now

Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Explore the skills needed to do well at university
  • Engage with the key skills required for success at university
  • Identify with what university lecturers have to say about skills their students excel at or struggle with
  • Explore what lecturers value in their students
  • Collect top tips for coping with the university learning environment

Who is the course for?

This course is for anyone considering a course of study at a University or similar higher education institution.

What do people say about this course?

"This has been so helpful in getting more of an insight into what studying at university will be like and require of you as a student. As well as really helping in knowing how to approach material you will encounter at university, Thank you!"

"This course was so good, very helpful. It helped me realize what I need to improve and also gave me some tips."

Who will you learn with?

Dr Harriet Jones is a Senior Lecturer at the University of East Anglia, a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, a National Teaching Fellow and Director of the PreUniversity Skills Programme

Who developed the course?

UEA (University of East Anglia)

The University of East Anglia is an internationally renowned university providing top quality academic, social and cultural facilities to over 15,000 students from over 100 countries around the globe.

Learning on FutureLearn

Your learning, your rules

  • Courses are split into weeks, activities, and steps to help you keep track of your learning
  • Learn through a mix of bite-sized videos, long- and short-form articles, audio, and practical activities
  • Stay motivated by using the Progress page to keep track of your step completion and assessment scores

Join a global classroom

  • Experience the power of social learning, and get inspired by an international network of learners
  • Share ideas with your peers and course educators on every step of the course
  • Join the conversation by reading, @ing, liking, bookmarking, and replying to comments from others

Map your progress

  • As you work through the course, use notifications and the Progress page to guide your learning
  • Whenever you’re ready, mark each step as complete, you’re in control
  • Complete 90% of course steps and all of the assessments to earn your certificate

Want to know more about learning on FutureLearn? Using FutureLearn

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Get a taste of this course

Find out what this course is like by previewing some of the course steps before you join:

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