Turn on thread page Beta
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    4
    ReputationRep:
    I am a first year student at Oxford, studying PPE.
    I feel just so overwhelmed and while everybody else seems to manage to do everything they need to, I just struggle to keep on top of my work. I always scrape deadlines, my work is always bad / the worst of all people I spoke to and I am constantly stressed. I feel terrible sometimes and all I want is leave. But on the other hand there's some parts I really like, everything's fine except that it is just all too much and I just cannot handle it.
    I feel like I just don't belong here, everybody else is just so much better than me. I don't know what to do if I left... I am an international student and I think about going back "home" and study in my country because honestly, one of my difficulties is the foreign language here.
    I just take so much longer than others to read all the stuff. In my first language, I am a very fast reader and in English I am average speed at best so that takes a lot of my time. For mathsy questions, I often cannot explain what I mean in English and I sometimes do not get the questions because of the wording.
    What do you think? Does it sound like I should drop out? I really don't know... Oxford has been my dream but it's a nightmare right now.
    Offline

    14
    ReputationRep:
    I don't think 4 weeks is enough time to make a decision like this one. Everyone improves over time and you likely aren't an exception. If speed and understanding is your problem, then surely more practice reading and setting a little time aside to do so is your best option, rather than dropping out of university, especially one that people dedicate their lives to going to and never get to do so. Maybe try reading some English literature in your travel or spare time, or even just before bed. But I'd imagine over time, you will adapt to your environment and your ability and pace will adjust themself to the situation accordingly. Things aren't set in stone at this point.
    Offline

    21
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by student234567)
    I am a first year student at Oxford, studying PPE.
    I feel just so overwhelmed and while everybody else seems to manage to do everything they need to, I just struggle to keep on top of my work. I always scrape deadlines, my work is always bad / the worst of all people I spoke to and I am constantly stressed. I feel terrible sometimes and all I want is leave. But on the other hand there's some parts I really like, everything's fine except that it is just all too much and I just cannot handle it.
    I feel like I just don't belong here, everybody else is just so much better than me. I don't know what to do if I left... I am an international student and I think about going back "home" and study in my country because honestly, one of my difficulties is the foreign language here.
    I just take so much longer than others to read all the stuff. In my first language, I am a very fast reader and in English I am average speed at best so that takes a lot of my time. For mathsy questions, I often cannot explain what I mean in English and I sometimes do not get the questions because of the wording.
    What do you think? Does it sound like I should drop out? I really don't know... Oxford has been my dream but it's a nightmare right now.
    It sounds like your issues will improve with practice, so give it at least a term. You should also speak to your tutors. It's great that there are bits that you still manage to enjoy. I think that you're going to make it through this, which will give you quite a sense of achievement. Good luck.
    • Community Assistant
    • Political Ambassador
    Offline

    21
    ReputationRep:
    Community Assistant
    Political Ambassador
    "Sometimes, it is only the student's pure passion for their subject, that is enough to see them through difficult times".
    Posted on the TSR App. Download from Apple or Google Play
    Offline

    15
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by student234567)
    I am a first year student at Oxford, studying PPE.
    I feel just so overwhelmed and while everybody else seems to manage to do everything they need to, I just struggle to keep on top of my work. I always scrape deadlines, my work is always bad / the worst of all people I spoke to and I am constantly stressed. I feel terrible sometimes and all I want is leave. But on the other hand there's some parts I really like, everything's fine except that it is just all too much and I just cannot handle it.
    I feel like I just don't belong here, everybody else is just so much better than me. I don't know what to do if I left... I am an international student and I think about going back "home" and study in my country because honestly, one of my difficulties is the foreign language here.
    I just take so much longer than others to read all the stuff. In my first language, I am a very fast reader and in English I am average speed at best so that takes a lot of my time. For mathsy questions, I often cannot explain what I mean in English and I sometimes do not get the questions because of the wording.
    What do you think? Does it sound like I should drop out? I really don't know... Oxford has been my dream but it's a nightmare right now.
    The feelings of being overwhelmed by the workload and that everyone else is coping so much better than you are extremely common. People post with exactly the same problem here on TSR on a regular basis. Look - here's a thread started by someone else only 6 days ago with the same issue; four weeks in is when it starts to hit you, but no doubt there will be similar threads posted towards the end of Michaelmas and in the run-up to Prelims too!

    That's not to say that you don't have a problem. but from personal experience, I can assure you that it is possible to go from feeling that you are completely out of your depth to graduating with a First.
    As RogerOxon says, the first thing to do is to speak with your tutor. Also consider speaking with the pastoral care people at your college and the Student Union Welfare services. They are used to dealing with this issue on a very regular basis. I would also urge you to do your best to talk this over with your fellow PPE-ists or whoever you feel friendly towards - you may be able to work out practical ways of sharing some of the load. Having a supportive friendship network can make a big difference in any case. Now that you are getting a sense of the workload, rigorous timetabling and self-organisation - including the judicious skipping of some parts of the curriculum - is also key.

    EDIT: this is why I made the Coping With Oxford thread
    Offline

    20
    ReputationRep:
    In my very first lecture (English, not PPE, though), the lecturer asked everyone who thought they were the stupidest person in the room to put up their hand. I'd say around 90% of the 200-odd people in that lecture theatre raised their hands.

    You're doing just fine. It's cliché, but it's hard to adjust to being one among many very capable people, when you're used to being near the top. A huge number of other students (if not most other students) will have thoughts very similar to the ones you're describing here. They - like most people - are just pretty good at hiding it.

    Chin up. Speak to your tutors. Try to find a way to unwind (sport, student journalism, drama, societies, whatever); it's really important for your sanity, and will probably help you to be more productive during your working hours. It's easier said than done, but try not to leave everything until the last minute. If you're struggling to plan/organise your time in such a way that allows you to get some work done earlier in the week, your tutors/senior students should be able to offer some advice. Most of all, keep paddling, at least until you've given it a fair shot. Virtually everyone feels out of their depth to begin with, but you can and will adapt. Good luck.
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    4
    ReputationRep:
    Hey! I just thought giving an update to this would be nice if someone stumbles across this and feels the same way I did in my first term. A huge thank you to everyone who has replied to this thread - I didn't reply anymore but I appreciated all of your posts a lot.
    I feel like I am doing much better in my second term. All my collections went surprisingly well after I really put in effort over the vac, I am going to lectures all the time and not miss all of them because I have to meet deadlines, I generally feel more settled and happy to be here. I don't want to leave anymore.
    I also did end up talking to one of my tutors shortly after this post because she was basically asking me if something was wrong (I must also have given off the impression of not feeling great). It really helped me to talk to a tutor about this and be assured that they do not think I am a complete failure or want me to rusticate.
    I also would like to add here that other people are struggling much more than one thinks. I thought everyone finds it easy and it is just me struggling with the workload and everything but it is true that everybody finds the course hard (or maybe nearly everybody, there might be somebody who finds it easy but it is not the norm). Getting to know my course mates a bit more, I came to realise they also had struggled with the workload at times, some were just really good at hiding it. My tutor had also assured me that, having read all our essays, she doesn't think that everybody else finds it easy and it's just me finding it hard.
    Offline

    15
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by student234567)
    Hey! I just thought giving an update to this would be nice if someone stumbles across this and feels the same way I did in my first term. A huge thank you to everyone who has replied to this thread - I didn't reply anymore but I appreciated all of your posts a lot.
    I feel like I am doing much better in my second term. All my collections went surprisingly well after I really put in effort over the vac, I am going to lectures all the time and not miss all of them because I have to meet deadlines, I generally feel more settled and happy to be here. I don't want to leave anymore.
    I also did end up talking to one of my tutors shortly after this post because she was basically asking me if something was wrong (I must also have given off the impression of not feeling great). It really helped me to talk to a tutor about this and be assured that they do not think I am a complete failure or want me to rusticate.
    I also would like to add here that other people are struggling much more than one thinks. I thought everyone finds it easy and it is just me struggling with the workload and everything but it is true that everybody finds the course hard (or maybe nearly everybody, there might be somebody who finds it easy but it is not the norm). Getting to know my course mates a bit more, I came to realise they also had struggled with the workload at times, some were just really good at hiding it. My tutor had also assured me that, having read all our essays, she doesn't think that everybody else finds it easy and it's just me finding it hard.
    It's very helpful of you to post an update, and I am so pleased that you are feeling better about things now. No doubt you'll face further challenges in the next couple of years, but hopefully you'll meet them with the same courage and determination.
    Offline

    21
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by student234567)
    Hey! I just thought giving an update to this would be nice if someone stumbles across this and feels the same way I did in my first term. A huge thank you to everyone who has replied to this thread - I didn't reply anymore but I appreciated all of your posts a lot.
    I feel like I am doing much better in my second term. All my collections went surprisingly well after I really put in effort over the vac, I am going to lectures all the time and not miss all of them because I have to meet deadlines, I generally feel more settled and happy to be here. I don't want to leave anymore.
    I also did end up talking to one of my tutors shortly after this post because she was basically asking me if something was wrong (I must also have given off the impression of not feeling great). It really helped me to talk to a tutor about this and be assured that they do not think I am a complete failure or want me to rusticate.
    I also would like to add here that other people are struggling much more than one thinks. I thought everyone finds it easy and it is just me struggling with the workload and everything but it is true that everybody finds the course hard (or maybe nearly everybody, there might be somebody who finds it easy but it is not the norm). Getting to know my course mates a bit more, I came to realise they also had struggled with the workload at times, some were just really good at hiding it. My tutor had also assured me that, having read all our essays, she doesn't think that everybody else finds it easy and it's just me finding it hard.
    Thank you for posting an update - it's great to hear that you're settling-in.
 
 
 
The home of Results and Clearing

2,905

people online now

1,567,000

students helped last year

University open days

  1. University of Oxford
    All undergraduate colleges and departments Undergraduate
    Fri, 14 Sep '18
Poll
Do you want your parents to be with you when you collect your A-level results?

The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

Write a reply...
Reply
Hide
Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.