A-levels results day: The essential guide to university

Record numbers of students have been accepted on university courses today Credit: Anna Gowthorpe/PA Archive
  • Going to university is a serious investment. Check out whether you may be eligible for extra funding by visiting your new university's website, or use the government's student finance calculator to check if you are eligible for extra contributions.

  • Make sure you apply on time for your accommodation. If you have not yet been contacted by your university, you will be shortly. Take the time to pick the accommodation which is right for you.

  • Get involved in societies. Have you dreamed of rock-climbing or caving? Or perhaps ballet or break-dancing? The freshers' fair is a time to explore the things you have always wanted to do. £5 society membership might seem like a lot (you are now, of course, a penniless student) but it could be one of the best investments you make.

  • Try not to be intimidated. You are not the only one who is new. Even if it is scary, be open and chat to everyone - you never know where your new friends will come from.

  • University is not like school. No one is going to force you to do your work or spend hours in the library. You have to learn to manage your time. Try not to leave it all to the last minute, for the sake of your grades and your health.

  • Eat well. The temptation is to burn the candle at both ends but you will wear yourself out and may catch freshers' flu. If you eat properly you will be in a better condition to work and play.

  • Go to the library induction. It may seem like the less exciting option in freshers' week, but at the end of term, when your essays are due in, you will be wishing you had!

  • Think about what you really need to take to university. Your room may be small, so do not fill it full of stuff. Photos, plug extension leads and extra wardrobe hanging space are in. 30 tins of beans, a kettle and iron are out.

  • For many people it is the first time they have lived away from home before and it can be hard to say goodbye to family. A lot happens on the first day at university so it is best to keep the goodbyes short and meet your new flatmates. Soon you will not even realise your family have gone!

  • Have fun!