20 Misconceptions About College

When it’s time to think about attending college, it can be hard to get a clear picture of what the experience is like. Too often students, like yourselves, get fed false information. This usually comes from peers, teachers, and most obviously the media. Luckily, we’re here to set the record straight. Here are twenty misconceptions about college life.

1. You don’t have to do your homework.

False. Just like high school, homework counts as part of your final grade. It varies from class to class, as each professor will specify on their syllabus. However, you won’t have a homework assignment due everyday for the same class like in high school, as most classes meet two to three times a week.

2. You have to join every club or group you see.
Not true. College is about finding your niche. If you’re not sure what you want to do , you can try out different clubs until you find something you like. But, if you know you only want to join the Engineering Society and nothing else, go for it. It’s your life.

3. It’s a constant party.
One thing you’ll learn quickly is that college is not like the movies. Sure, students like to socialize on the weekends, but movies that depict crazy parties every night isn’t the truth. More often than not, we college students like to use our free time to sleep or just watch TV.

4.You don’t have to go to class.
Just like in high school, you will have to attend class. Many professors include participation and attendance as a part of your grade. However, going to class is beneficial because you can meet fellow students, get to know your professor and get help on assignments. Also, you’re paying for it!

5.Social life, sleep or grades: pick 2.
If you can schedule your time correctly, you won’t have to choose.

6.The Freshman 15.
The Freshman 15 can be real, but it’s not inevitable. Just keep track of what you’re eating, and make time in your day to exercise!

7.“They won’t let you get away with this in college.”
Many teachers in high school tell students that things like eating in class or not asking to go to the bathroom are unacceptable in college. This in untrue, as professors understand that you are an adult, and as long as you are respectful they won’t mind if you have a snack or get up without asking.

8.There are no rules.
College does have rules, and they are to keep you safe, and make the campus a healthy environment to live in.

9.There are all the rules.
There are definitely less rules in college than at home, but you still have to be aware of your behavior and actions. Remember that college is your transition into adulthood, teaching you to be more independent.

10. “You’ll never have to take___ class again.”
Many schools have core curriculum or general education classes that require students to explore other majors and departments outside their own. Chances are you will have to take another class in a major that’s not your own.

11. All your classes will be huge lectures.

Not necessarily. Here at UML, our student to professor ratio is 18:1, meaning the majority of your classes will have only about twenty students. However, it all depends on the class. Some, like Chemistry and Physics, will be large lectures, but they’re capped at 300 students. And even with larger classes, you can still connect with professors during their office hours. You will have the chance to get to know your professors, just like you knew your teachers in high school.

12. Everything will be like the movies.

Unfortunately, life isn’t like the movies, but that’s okay! Most movies perceive college as a huge party scene where somehow no one ever goes to class or does homework, but is always studying for “the big exam.” This is not true!

13. Everyone is judging you.

One of the best things about college is that no one will judge you for being you. Want to nap in the hallway? Sure! Most students will be wishing they were you. In college, just be yourself, everyone is too busy worrying about themselves.

14. You’ll be too busy to have any fun.

Not true! Some days workloads might be heavy, but there’s always time to take a break and enjoy life. Just make sure you don’t get too deep in your work and pencil in some you time!

15. “____ is just like the stereotype.”

In college, no one fits into a certain stereotype. Though you may see your typical athletes or sorority girls, these people have depth, and are not just who you see on the outside. You don’t have to fit into a certain stereotype either. That’s the great thing about college, everyone is their true self.

16. Your parents will never call you.

Parents will call! They do actually miss you, and are genuinely concerned about your new, independent life.

17. They put laxatives in the food.

If anyone tells you this, don’t believe them.

18. Your parents can fix any problem.

Since you are an adult now, you have to solve your problems on your own. This means that you have to personally email a professor if you have trouble in class. It also means making your own appointments if you feel sick or hurt. Your parents can give you advice on what to do, but you have to follow through with the action.

19. Your professors won’t know who you are.

As stated earlier, most college classes have about twenty to thirty students. You can always speak with your professor during their office hours so they can learn more about you. Most professors want to get to know you, that way they can help you succeed in their course.

20. You have to know exactly what you want to do with your life.

College is a time to find yourself. It’s okay to not know what you want. Don’t panic.