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How to Prepare for the First Day of Class in College

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If you’re a college freshman, congratulations on making it to your first day. You’re in for the ride of your life so hang in there. But that’s not where we’re going with this post.

This post is going to show you how to prepare for your first day of class in college.

Whether you’re an incoming freshman or not, you need to do these 7 basic things to make sure you start the semester off on a good note!


How to Prepare for the First Day of College Classes:

1. Set alarms

If you haven’t already, set your alarms for the week versus doing it day by day. That way you don’t forget and sleep in when you have class.

For example, if you have an 8:00 am (boo!) on Tuesdays and Thursdays, make an alarm for 6/7:00 am for Tuesday’s and Thursdays! Don’t wait till the night before each day to turn on the alarm. If you aren’t sure how to do this, here are the instructions for iPhones:

  1. Click the “+” in the top right corner to create your alarm
  2. Set the time and choose Repeat > Every Tuesday, Every Thursday
  3. You’re done!

Do this for your entire schedule for the week so you never have to worry about manually setting your alarms again. 


2. Plan your outfit

Your mornings (and life) will be 100x easier if you plan your outfits the night before class. Sometimes winging it works, and sometimes it doesn’t. And we all know the stress that occurs when it doesn’t.

Lay out an outfit or hang it up behind your door for your first day of class.

You can also lay out some backup options or keep them in mind in case your outfit doesn’t look like what you expect it to when you put it on. (We’ve all been there!)

Related: 13 Essential Items Every College Student Needs to Get Through the Semester


3. Plan your breakfast

Yep, might as well get this one of the way too. But don’t overcomplicate it, though. You don’t actually have to make anything the night before (unless you want to). 

Just bare in mind what you’re going to have for breakfast so you can plan accordingly.

For example, if you want to cook up a full breakfast with eggs, pancakes, and all that jazz, you’re going to have to wake up a bit earlier to get it done. 

I’d highly recommend a healthy breakfast (and waking up in time to make one). That way you’re not starving on your first day of class and can’t pay attention. You’ll be way more productive on a full stomach than an empty one.


4. Pack your bag

It’s always best to pack your bag the night before class.

Packing your backpack the night before your first day will give you more time to prepare and think about what you need. You’re less likely to forget things this way (and it’s less stressful than the morning of!)

Pro tip: This tip should be used beyond your first day of class! 

If this isn’t your first year in college you can probably relate to not switching out your books one time so you took your Monday notes to your Tuesday class. This is sooo frustrating and annoying!

Make sure you always pack your bag the night before to avoid this nightmare!

Related: 10 Backpack Essentials Every College Student Must Have


5. Screenshot your schedule

Freshman or not, your first day of a new semester requires a lot of adjustments; the biggest being your new schedule.

You’re most likely not going to remember your class schedule and locations until the second month. One way to help with that is to screenshot your schedule and either set it as your wallpaper or keep it in your favorites on your iPhone. If you don’t have an iPhone, just make sure it’s easily accessible in your gallery.

You can either screenshot your schedule from your school’s website or use a college schedule maker to make it prettier.

Related: 14 Habits of Successful College Students that will Boost Your GPA


6. Review your syllabus

In preparing for your new semester you reviewed your syllabus. Now, it’s time to scan it to make sure you’re all set for the first day. 

Here’s what you need to look out for:

  1. Assignments due that week or soon (if your professor is evil, of course)
  2. Relevant policies about electronic usage, food, punctuality, and attendance
  3. Assignments from textbook due dates

It’s important to look at these policies, for example, because some professors are stricter than others. I once had a professor that marked us absent if we used our phones or laptops in class (no, seriously!!) 

The assignment due dates are important because if you don’t have your textbook yet (and I’d recommend you wait to get it!) you see how much time you have before you get it and if you need it at all.

P.S. to learn how I maintained a 4.0 GPA without ever purchasing a textbook, read my ultimate college guide!

Related: How to Write a College Paper and Get an A+ Every Time


7. Find your classes beforehand!

One of the smartest things you can do is (especially if you’re an incoming freshman) is to find your classes beforehand!

If this isn’t your first semester, you probably already have an idea of where your classroom buildings are, but you may still not know where your specific classes are.

If you live on campus, walk around before the first day to make sure you know where the buildings are (and your classes if it’s open).

If you don’t live on campus, get there at least 30 minutes – 1 hour earlier to figure out where your classes are. This is especially important if you don’t have a break between classes!


This post showed you 7 simple things to do to prepare for the new semester.
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how to prepare for your first day of class in college


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Written by The Metamorphosis

The Metamorphosis is a lifestyle blog about the journey of college to adulting. Here you can find the tips for college, self-improvement, adulting, and more.

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