Justin
Subject: History
Student status: Home, Graduate
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Transcript:

I guess it was a sense of you know I didn't want to drop out because it would just seem like a wasted opportunity, I wanted to make the most of it. And I did know to some extent that the course would get better in the second and third year and that I would be able to develop my interests and you know do something that I wanted to do a lot more.  I was just very cynical I mean I didn't spend a lot of time at university I had a job at home and so I kind of just went back most weekends. 

I didn't really make the most of the university experience in the first year and so I was quite disconnected from it. You know I socialised a lot with my friends from home rather than friends from university. I did socialise with friends from university but I was always connected to the home life as well which meant I was always disconnected to the university life in some way as well. I don't know, I guess I kind of as I said before I just wanted to power through it. I didn't want to give up because it would be a waste of money and a waste of time. I wanted to do the degree I just wasn't particularly enjoying it and I just hoped that it would get better in the coming years, which fortunately it did.

And so you've talked about how things did change over time.  Can you talk a bit more about how your approach to study changed and the way you studied over the course of the degree?

I mean in the first year it was all kind of lectures, hundreds of people in the room. My attendance wasn't complete and it was mostly a case of blagging it to be honest kind of you didn't have to go to the lectures. By the second term you realised you didn't have to go to the lectures you could just kind of wait for the question to come out and then do your own research on it. I work a lot better that way rather than going to lectures and hearing about the topic. I don't know, it was very contrived, it was like you have to go to all of them but you don't have to go to all of them you just have to go to the one that's relevant to the essay title.  In the first year I was very much doing the minimum amount of work that I could do I wasn't really striving to do the best.  But that changed when I got passionate about a particular subject.

The second year is obviously worth something where the first year is worth nothing.  So by the time I got to my second year I had realised that this was counting towards my degree and because I was interested in it as well I was able to motivate myself to do the best I possibly could.  You know I wasn't just doing the minimum work to get it out of the way I was genuinely interested in something and so I wanted to put all my effort into it.