Brett Davidson

Brett Davidson

Brett Davidson

Student Advice

Dear full-of-potential psychology students,

Probably like many of you, I was extremely nervous to start university. I had no idea what I wanted to take, or where I wanted to go; this is completely normal, so do not fret. No one in my life had much advice for university when I started, so, as a student, I hope to provide some to you.

Organize your life. There are many aspects to organization in university, but it is essential that you create a foundation that will steer you. Some things I found useful included setting up a calendar; making my bed every morning; setting a routine; and having a clean workspace. Together, these simple methods established clarity for the tasks that I needed to get done in university. As a result, I was able to perform my best when I felt clarity. Even if it’s just one new habit, try it, and see how you feel.

Experience your life. When I say experience your life, what I mean is that you should dabble in variety. For example, take the courses that interest you. I never knew that I wanted to be a psychology major, and I only found this out by exploring the topic more. If you are more interested in a topic, you are more likely to do well. Apart from class, join one of KPU’s psych labs; there are many, and they provide you with valuable experience. However, don’t overwhelm yourself with research. You should also explore student clubs at KPU; they help you find new opportunities by meeting new people.

Lastly, balance your life. I performed optimally in school when I had a good academic-life balance. See your friends; continue with hobbies; have quality sleep; exercise regularly; take frequent breaks. In the latter, for example, every 30 minutes that I studied, I would work for 25, and then rest for 5. This is called the pomodoro technique; it fights procrastination. Altogether, these are facets that we have some control to optimize productivity and happiness. This, however, does not mean you should always prioritize the non-academic side. To combat this, set goals for what you want to achieve in your classes. These goals should be specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time-based; or, in other words, S.M.A.R.T. You are more likely to achieve your goal if it is S.M.A.R.T, and who doesn’t want to be smart while in university? I hope this letter was useful for you in some capacity, and I wish you the best.

Brett | BA (Hons.) Psychology Student, KPU