Essential Preparation Checklist for Starting Your Post-Secondary Education

Kick start your college career with this preparation checklist for new students. Ross Education student studying

Getting a post-secondary education can be an exciting and transformative time for many people. You not only get to develop many valuable skills for the workforce, but you also get to expand your mind and open yourself up to new opportunities that you might have never thought were possible. A post secondary education can include university, college, a trade school, or any other higher education institution. Moreover, a bit of preparation can go a long way and significantly contribute to a smooth transition into a successful career. Starting your post-secondary education journey can be rewarding, but it can also be a very daunting experience. You don’t always know what to expect and there may be some obstacles that you encounter. However, by taking some time to prepare yourself, you can set yourself up for success and improve your overall college experience. To help you make the most out of your post-secondary education, we have compiled a comprehensive checklist of some things you can do to prepare before starting school.

Research your chosen institution

Before you start your post-secondary education, conduct some thorough research about your chosen institution. Familiarize yourself with the campus, its facilities, and available resources. In addition, explore the academic programs, course offerings, and the campus culture. Taking the time to understand the environment and culture will help you make sure that your expectations and goals are in alignment with the institution.

Prepare your portal and email

Every school will give you a login to a portal that you will use to access your assignments and curriculum. You may get access to it before the first day of school. If you receive it before your first day, testing it out to make sure it works and familiarizing yourself with the portal will help you feel more comfortable for the first day of classes. Additionally, some classes may also give you the option to start assignments before the first day of classes, so setting up everything and starting early will help you have a smoother and less stressful transition as you start school.

Review admission requirements

Ensure that you have met all the admission requirements for your chosen program. Review the deadlines for submitting applications and necessary documents, such as transcripts, recommendation letters, and entrance exam scores. Staying organized will help you keep track of everything and you will avoid missing any important dates or deadlines.

Financial planning

College or university education often involves significant financial considerations. Prepare a budget to understand your expenses and explore available financial aid options, such as scholarships, grants, and student loans. Research and apply for relevant scholarships and grants to alleviate the burden of tuition fees. By taking some time to create a realistic plan, you can better manage your finances during your time in school.

Accommodation and housing

When you are creating your budget and looking at your finances, you should also decide if you plan to live on campus or you will require off-campus housing. By doing some research you can find some accommodations options in advance. Contact your chosen institutions for information on available on-campus housing or seek guidance for off-campus housing. In addition, make a checklist of essential items you will need for your living space, such as bedding, kitchen utensils, and other personal necessities.

Attend orientation programs

Before you start your classes, you will normally have an orientation to help prepare for your classes. These programs are made to help you get familiar with the campus, its facilities, and any important policies. They also provide you with an opportunity to meet fellow students and make connections. Make sure to attend orientation sessions to familiarize yourself with the institution's academic and social environment.Additionally, always ask questions and use this opportunity to get to know faculty members, advisors, and support staff.

Get familiar with all of the academic resources available

Getting familiar with all of the various academic resources available to you, such as libraries, research databases, tutoring services, and writing centers will benefit you a lot during your time in school. These resources can greatly enhance your learning experience and provide assistance when needed. Moreover, by attending workshops or seminars on study skills and research techniques, you can maximize your academic performance.

Print out and read your class syllabus

Before you start your classes, every teacher will provide you with a syllabus. The syllabus will provide you with a general overview of the class and the materials you will be going over. Taking some time to read over it will help you feel more prepared and you will know ahead of time what assignments are due and when.

Purchase or rent course materials

Find out which textbooks, software, or materials are required for your courses. Once you find out what you need, check the institution's website or contact the professors for a list of required materials. Consider buying or renting second-hand textbooks to save money. Additionally, explore online resources and e-books that might be available for your courses.

Set up a study space

Designate a quiet study space where you can focus and be productive. Choose a quiet area with good lighting, comfortable seating, and minimal distractions. Gather essential supplies like notebooks, pens, and a computer. Make sure you have a reliable internet connection and necessary software for online research and assignments.

Master time management

Effective time management is crucial in order to see success in your post-secondary education. Create a schedule that includes time for classes, studying, extracurricular activities, and personal commitments. Moreover, using digital calendars, planners, or productivity apps can help you stay organized and manage your time efficiently. Remember to allocate time for breaks and self-care activities to maintain a healthy work-life balance.

Embrace growth

Starting a post-secondary education can be challenging, but having a positive mindset, seeking help when needed, being open to new experiences, and accepting the fact that there will be learning curves will help you overcome obstacles and embrace opportunities for personal and professional growth.

Check out Med Libs
Benefits of Working in Healthcare Thinking about pursuing a career in healthcare? Here are perks that come along with working in the medical field Published May 24, 2024
Tips for Boosting Productivity and Efficiency as You Return to School Unlock your academic potential with these actionable tips for a seamless transition back to school. Published April 30, 2024
Common Nursing Terms You Should Know Essential terms to know for all aspiring healthcare professionals Published April 16, 2024
Exploring the Pros and Cons of Adult Education for Career Advancement Delve into the opportunities and challenges of returning to school as an adult, from skill enhancement and career prospects to financial investment and time constraints. Published March 25, 2024
10 Morning Habits to Boost Your Productivity The way you spend your mornings has a big impact on how the rest of the day will go. Published March 18, 2024
Mastering Clinical Procedures: Essential Tips for Nursing Assistants From staying organized to seeking feedback, elevate your skills and provide top-notch care to patients. Published March 11, 2024
Nursing Assistant Terminology Dive into the most commonly used terms with which nursing assistants should be familiar. Published Feb 29, 2024
Common Misconceptions About Medical Assistants Breaking down the most misunderstood aspects about the medical assistant profession. Published Feb 23, 2024
Communication Strategies for Effective Patient Interaction Improving interactions between patients and providers is key to delivering a superior level of care. Published Feb 13, 2024
Digital Detox: Unplugging for Mental Well-Being Ways you can unplug and do a digital detox. Published Feb 9, 2024
How to Manage Stress Transform stressful situations into productive energy Published Dec 28, 2023
Maximizing the Value of Your Education Learn how to make the most of your education journey Published Dec 18, 2023
Memorization Techniques Enhance your learning with these effective memorization techniques Published Dec 5, 2023
How to Care for Your Mental Health Taking a look at various methods of keeping your mind and body healthy, sharp, and focused Published Nov 27, 2023
Interview Tips Top interview tips to help you land your dream job Published Nov 16, 2023
Essential Preparation Checklist for Starting Your Post-Secondary Education How you can prepare to start a post-secondary education Published Oct 31, 2023
Seven Key Skills You Need as a Nursing Assistant Personality traits and characteristics to help you thrive in a career as a nursing assistant Published Oct 12, 2023
10 Productivity Hacks for Remote Workers Unlock your remote work potential with these extra efficiency shortcuts Published Oct 2, 2023
Top 10 Traits of an Exceptional Healthcare Worker Exploring the qualities that define an exceptional healthcare professional Published Sep 27, 2023
Eight ways to turn an externship into a job offer Here are some ways you can use your education and experience to go from externship to employment Published Sep 22, 2023
Vet Tech Terminology Exploring veterinary technician terminology for students and veterinary professionals Published Sep 12, 2023

Change your tomorrow, today.

Get Started
Lillian Miller

Following my years after high school, coming to Ross was one of the best things I've chosen to do. I've learned a lot through my classmates and teachers. Ross has helped me to further my career for becoming a neonatal nurse practitioner. I highly recommend Ross to anyone who is looking for a great medical program.

Lillian Miller Graduate Medical Assistant student at Madison Heights, MI campus Graduation: March 13, 2019
Brittany Glymph

My experience at Ross has been very rewarding. They have an open door policy and Ms. Jenny is an amazing teacher. The program is set up for students to accomplish their goals.

Brittany Glymph Graduate Dental Assistant student at Johnson City, TN campus Graduation: May 28, 2019
Tonya Shaffer

The main reason I would recommend Ross College is the atmosphere! All the staff members are caring and helpful! The instructors are knowledgeable in the fields they are teaching. As a result, students are passing and wanting to come to class!

Tonya Shaffer Graduate Medical Assistant student at North Canton, OH campus Graduation: April 24, 2019
Toshiba Smith

Ross has been great in my life. The instructors got me through some hard times in class and in my personal life. This experience has been wonderful. I've never completed any higher education until now. Ross has driven me to continue toward my nursing degree. After externship, I now work for a great doctor in pain management, and I love it.

Toshiba Smith Graduate Medical Assistant student at Granger, IN campus Graduation: December 31, 2018
Amanda Stead

I will forever be grateful for the knowledge and guidance I received at Ross. I came to a point in my life where I had to do something better for myself. I wanted a career, not just a job. The staff was amazing when it came to helping me choose what program to study. In less than a year, I graduated with a certificate in Medical Assisting. I decided to further my education and went on to attend Ross College online, where I graduated with an Associate's Degree in Medical Assisting. I now have an amazing job, giving me the peace of mind any single parent desires, which is knowing I can provide for my child.

Amanda Stead Graduate Medical Assistant student at Port Huron, MI campus Graduation: December 19, 2018
Medical Assistant Program offered at these campus locations:
  • Huntsville
  • Quad Cities
  • Evansville
  • Fort Wayne
  • Granger
  • Kokomo
  • Lafayette
  • Muncie
  • Bowling Green
  • Erlanger
  • Hopkinsville
  • Owensboro
  • Ann Arbor
  • Battle Creek
  • Brighton
  • Canton (MI)
  • Davison
  • Flint
  • Grand Rapids
  • Kalamazoo
  • Kentwood
  • Lansing
  • Midland
  • Muskegon
  • New Baltimore
  • Port Huron
  • Saginaw
  • Taylor
  • Warren
  • Cincinnati
  • Dayton
  • Elyria
  • Mansfield
  • Niles
  • Canton (OH)
  • Sylvania
  • Johnson City
  • Knoxville
  • Charleston
  • Morgantown
Dental Assistant Program offered at these campus locations:
  • Huntsville
  • Evansville
  • Fort Wayne
  • Granger
  • Kokomo
  • Lafayette
  • Muncie
  • Erlanger
  • Owensboro
  • Brighton
  • Canton (MI)
  • Davison
  • Flint
  • Grand Rapids
  • Kalamazoo
  • Kentwood
  • Lansing
  • Warren
  • New Baltimore
  • Muskegon
  • Saginaw
  • Cincinnati
  • Dayton
  • Elyria
  • Niles
  • Johnson City
  • Knoxville
  • Charleston
  • Morgantown
Veterinary Assistant Program offered at these campus locations:
  • Huntsville
  • Erlanger
  • Canton
  • Kalamazoo
  • New Baltimore
  • Warren
Pharmacy Technician Program Certificate online program
Nursing Assistant Program offered at these campus locations:
  • Brighton
  • Grand Rapids
  • Kalamazoo
  • Midland
Medical Insurance Billing and Office Administration Certificate online program
Occupational Therapy Assistant Program offered at these campus locations:
  • Hopkinsville
  • Quad Cities
Nursing Program offered at these campus locations:
  • Canton (OH)
  • Cincinnati
  • Dayton
  • Elyria
  • Niles
  • Sylvania
Practical Nursing Program offered at these campus locations:
  • Canton (OH)
  • Cincinnati
  • Elyria
  • Niles
  • Sylvania
Veterinary Technology Program offered at these campus locations:
  • Canton (OH)
Business Management Program offered at these campus locations:
  • Hopkinsville, KY
Medical Assistant Associate of Applied Science Degree online program
Health Care Administration Associate Degree online program
Human, Social, and Health Services Associate of Applied Science Degree online program
Medical Billing Administrative Specialist Associate Degree online program
Medical Office Administration Certificate Program online program
Medical Insurance Billing and Office Administration Certificate online program
Pharmacy Technician Program Certificate online program