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    Hi, I recently recieved confirmation to study biology at Oxford and I was wondering if there were any current biologists on here who could tell me how they prepared to start the course (or any freshers in the same position as me)

    Apart from an optional book (which I have already started reading) the tutors at my college haven't set anything else. Is there anything else I should think about doing?
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    (Original post by Parrotperson)
    Hi, I recently recieved confirmation to study biology at Oxford and I was wondering if there were any current biologists on here who could tell me how they prepared to start the course (or any freshers in the same position as me)

    Apart from an optional book (which I have already started reading) the tutors at my college haven't set anything else. Is there anything else I should think about doing?
    Not biology, but if no work has been set for you, my advice would be to just relax for the time being. Freshers is all quite hectic and the work will probably start to build up (don't worry everybody is in the same boat wondering how to keep up!) quite quickly, so you'll be thankful not to overstretch yourself too much before you've arrived. You could have a look over some notes to keep yourself thinking, but if nothing has been set to do, you should be fine. iirc, for bichemistry we had an 'optional' maths and stats booklet, and some didn't even do that.
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    My rather idiosyncratic tips would be:

    - remind yourself that your tutors assessed you alongside scores of other applicants. They are quite sure that you are already good to go! So only do pre-reading if it's a pleasure, not a stress

    - whatever your subject, the best preparation is psychological. Do a bit of planning for how to cope with early crises like feeling lonely, or overworked, or out of your depth (EVERYONE feels this sometimes), and remember that those tutors, support services, bops, lectures and pracs are there for you; it's not about you weeping over your unwritten essay at 3am on the morning before your 9am tute as you try to fit in with them. (which is a way of saying, "be happy with yourself")

    - reading-wise, here's a selection: Dawkins' "Selfish Gene" and "Ancestors Tale", Nick Lane, "Sex, Power, Suicide" are pretty mainstream, course-related things. But maybe something more left-field and inspirational would be better. Russel Hoban "Riddley Walker", Jablonka and Lamb "Evolution in 4 Dimensions", "Romantic Outlaws"( a joint biography of Wollstonecraft and Shelley) , the poetry of Kathleen Jamie, Edward Abbey "Desert Solitaire"....
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    (Original post by Parrotperson)
    Hi, I recently recieved confirmation to study biology at Oxford and I was wondering if there were any current biologists on here who could tell me how they prepared to start the course (or any freshers in the same position as me)

    Apart from an optional book (which I have already started reading) the tutors at my college haven't set anything else. Is there anything else I should think about doing?
    Our Biologists have always tended to be very hands-on collecting bugs, scanning the skies for birds, classifying apples - you name it. Here's an example:

    https://www.bnc.ox.ac.uk/about-brase...ys-mother-duck

    So warming up with a bit of local Biology would be an idea,

    Has your college JCR sent out student parents letters or set up a Facebook page? Putting your question to a current UG would be another option.
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    (Original post by BrasenoseAdm)
    So warming up with a bit of local Biology would be an idea,
    My daughter did some local Water Vole-ing and a short course with Acorn Ecology. Both survey-technique oriented.
 
 
 
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