Insider Tips for Freshmen English Majors

Every freshmen overprepares for college. We think we need as much as we did in high school. But here’s the thing…we don’t.

As a Junior English/Communications Journalism double major, I have a few inside tips up my sleeve. So here’s my list of essentials you need to have as an English major.

  1. 1. Sticky Notes

    God, I go through so many sticky notes, it’s ridiculous! You annotate page after page after page, littering your textbooks with pretty colored sticky notes with various notes and doddles. But trust me, you definitely will thank yourself later when you can look back at the stuff you read the first week of school and know exactly what happened.

    And the tiny tab sticky notes work great for blocking out quotes if you don’t want to write in your textbook.

  2. 2. Notebook or Laptop

    I am personally old school and always prefer paper, but that doesn’t mean you’ll have to use them. Now, at Siena, certain teachers do restrict the usage of computers, so always have a couple notebooks on hand, just in case.

    Plus, if you don’t understand something, your computer has SparkNotes.

    As for notebooks, I recommend three to five subject notebooks, that way you only have to carry around one notebook a day. For commuters, this saves a lot of space and weight in your backpack!

  3. 3. Pretty Pens

    When American Lit gets to dry, spice up your notes with a hot pink pen. Fun colors can make homework and notetaking just the tiniest bit better…but only a tiny bit.

    Plus, if you’re like me, you can color code your notes. And even color code your sticky notes too!

  4. 4. Planner

    Boy, will a planner become your best friend. When you have to keep track of three reading assignments for one day’s worth of homework for one class, you’ll thank yourself later as you cross out each assignment. It’s like a little party every time a reading assignment is crossed off, one less thing to do! And it’s a great way of blocking out time!

    Plus, you can get ahead looking at the syllabus and your planner. Your friend coming to visit you for the weekend, get as much done as possible to spend more time with them!

  5. 5. Tabs, Tabs, New Browser Window

    Trust me, when it comes to writing research papers, open a whole new browser window. You’ll have 50 tabs open with different searches and articles you’re using (or at least attempting to use it). It’s so much easier to pull up a window and know everything you need is all in one place, and you won’t open Netflix by accident.

Hopefully these tips help you. And try not to shed too many tears over your upcoming papers and reading assignments.