Depending on the size of your class, you could be sharing lectures with anything from 10 to 500 students! Your lecture timetable should be available on your my.tcd.ie portal or from the department noticeboard. With most courses, you will be given a reading list either before or during your first lecture — these readings are the backbone of the material you cover in class. Go to as many as possible to make sure you don’t miss anything! In many courses, lectures are compulsory so be sure to check your course handbook.
If you do skip a lecture, don’t panic. Ask your lecturer or one of your classmates for notes, and if you have any questions on the topic covered that day — drop into your lecturer’s office hours!
These smaller discussion-based classes are designed to help you get to grips with your lecture content! They are usually taught by teaching assistants (TAs) rather than lecturers.
Tutorial attendance is often compulsory. If you miss a tutorial but have a valid excuse, contact your TA and your module department head as soon as possible.
Some departments don’t hold tutorials in the first week of term, so be sure to keep an eye on emails from the school administrators to see what the plan is for the first few weeks.
If you’re in the faculty of Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics (STEM) — or Health Sciences (HS) — you will spend a lot of time applying the material that you learn in lectures practically.
Attendance is usually compulsory and you may be required to write up detailed lab reports. In many courses, all your lab marks come from these reports. Try get all of them done and handed in on time — having six lab reports to do at the end of the module while revising isn’t much fun.
Many courses in the Faculty of Health Science have a mandatory placement component. Social Work also has a fieldwork placement.
These clinical placements will take up a number of weeks each year, in a variety of clinical settings. The duration of these placements vary each year and are outlined in your course handbook.
Nursing and Midwifery students will have a preceptor while they are on placement. A preceptor is a registered nurse/midwife who has been specifically prepared to guide, direct, facilitate and assess nursing students learning during a practice placement.
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