What will my classes be like?
Face to face teaching at uni takes different forms. For each 10 unit course that you are enrolled in, you can expect to have approximately two to five contact hours each week, which will consist of one or more of the following class types:
Lectures are the most common method for teaching and learning at uni. In your first year you will find that many lectures are given in large lecture theatres and you will discover that individual lecturers vary in their delivery style. Taking notes assists your learning of concepts, theories and ideas.
Tutorials (or 'tutes') consist of smaller groups of students (12-45). Most tutorials generally require you to have completed some reading or exercises prior to the session and will have a tutor in attendance to lead discussion. Some assessment items, such as quizzes, may take place in tutorials.
Laboratory (or 'lab') work generally involves working in groups, the application of scientific skills and gaining hands-on experience with testing and conducting experiments.
Placement means a clinical placement, practicum, internship and any other form of professional, industrial or vocational experience included in a course or required for a degree.
Practicals (or 'pracs') give you a practical understanding of specific methodologies and skills appropriate to the course.
Textbooks and readings
Your Course Coordinators and Lecturers will supply you with a list of the textbooks, readings and other resources that are prescribed for your courses at your first lecture/class. You can purchase prescribed texts from the Co-op Bookshop on the Newcastle (Callaghan) and Central Coast (Ourimbah) campuses.
The Coop Bookshop Text List Search is an easy way to search and buy your textbooks. Please note these lists are as accurate as possible but you should check your Course Outline for texts to make sure you are purchasing the correct edition.
There are other options to buy your textbooks, including:
- Take a look on campus noticeboards for any textbooks for sale.
- Visit Student VIP Textbooks (formerly Textbook Exchange) for second-hand books.
- Check out Textbook Exchange – The University of Newcastle on Facebook.
Some subjects will also have Course Readers available. These are a collection of the readings you will need to do each week, collated and printed for you. They are available from the Fuji Xerox Print Centre at Callaghan and at the Co-Op Bookshop at Ourimbah.
We encourage students to attend their first lecture/class before purchasing prescribed textbooks or course readers, just to make sure you're on the right page (pardon the pun!).
Study Skills, support and advice
Critical thinking, reading and writing for university can be new and challenging experiences. If you want to develop your study skills, Learning Development has a group of dedicated Learning Advisers who can help you learn successfully at university. For info on workshops, essay writing, referencing, English language support and more, visit the Learning Development page.
If you are looking to talk to other students who have completed your courses before, Peer Assisted Study Sessions (PASS) are a great option. Regular study sessions are held for individual courses, and run by students who have achieved high marks in the course previously. It's a great way to connect with others in your program while getting the most from your free study time.
Uni Tunes is our study skills/academic literacy app. It is a free app with short videos on topics like understanding assignments, note taking, active listening, assessing evidence and academic writing. It's available for both on both Apple and Android devices.