What to Expect at an American University

What to expect in american uni

In the United States, going to college or university is considered a rite of passage. It is the beginning of becoming an adult and while not everyone manages to go, there are many who do, either through scholarships or the lifelong savings of their parents. It is a time of heartache for parents, watching their youngsters leave, but the start of a great adventure for the students. The end of the trail will be graduation.


At 18 it can be hard to see what a great opportunity this is, and before the student knows it, they are 21 and on the search for a job. It will be best to take any opportunity that arises, be it social trips invite or the chance to go on a field trip. At a time when there are many holidays, it may be the only chance many get to visit parts of their own country and a road trip will be a great way to do this.

Free Time.

Considering the drinking age, it may mean less time is spent partying. Depending on circumstances there are many things to do with free time when at University.

  • Parties don’t have to involve alcohol and many States have the weather to allow pool parties to take place.

  • Working – his can be a great way to meet people as well as provide a little extra cash for when you need it. Books have to be paid for.

  • Traveling – as previously mentioned the time is right.

  • Eating out can be inexpensive and a great way to spend time with friends.

  • Check your own campus diary – many events will take place on your doorstep.


Depending on the course, a lot of time will be spent studying. This can be done in the student’s room or in the extensive libraries. It is amazing the amount of resources universities have when it comes to providing help and support.

Applying is straightforward once you have selected your major. There are even ways to go to university without choosing the main topic you want to study. This may not be the case for over-subscribed courses, but swapping major part way through is not a big issue. There are minors as well as majors and as you would imagine, they take about half the time a major take to complete.

It is likely that you will study for 4 years if taking an undergraduate degree, although some push on and finish in 3. Clearly courses such as Medicine cannot be rushed as everything has to be covered. Some courses will require the first year to be quite general and then the exact course will be chosen in the second year.

Study Time

There is no doubt that a lot of time and effort must be put into studying as if you leave with a poor degree, it will be a problem for a few reasons. Studying can be expensive, so it will have been a waste of money, 3 or 4 years will be lost, and it will be harder to get a top-level job.

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