A Day in the Life of a College Student

What to expect from your everyday college schedule as a student, from studying to socializing.

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You’ve probably already guessed that a college schedule is a lot different from your schedule in high school. How you balance everything from classes, studying, homework, socializing, extracurricular activities and even big parties changes a lot from your senior year of high school to your freshman year at college.

Learning to manage everything is an important step and a key to success at your university.

The dorms are really fun and you want to make sure that you have time to meet people and just hang out or go to dorm-sponsored events, movie nights, dinners, or whatever.

College Classes

The biggest part of the college schedule is how your classes fit into your day. A college student might take four or five classes per semester.

Those classes probably meet two or three times per week, but the average college semester is typically equivalent to a year of high school study. So if you’re only meeting two or three times a week, you can bet that there will be tons of work to be done outside of class.

Most classes will start no earlier than 8 AM, except for certain special classes and sometimes physical education classes.


Expect your college schedule to be filled with studying. Professors might not even grade your homework, but you’ll be expected to know everything for the tests. Did you ever think you would voluntarily sit around with a bunch of people and complain that your professor didn’t do enough examples in class or assign enough homework problems? At some point in college, you probably will.

College Life

Freshmen are almost always required to live in the dorms for their first year, and many continue to live on campus for a few years. It can be easy to slack off when you have tons of friends all in the room next to you. It might be wise to have a free period in the late morning or afternoon when everyone is in class so that you can catch up on schoolwork.

The dorms are really fun and you want to make sure that you have time to meet people and just hang out or go to dorm-sponsored events, movie nights, dinners, or whatever.

Students can also choose to live off-campus or be a part of a fraternity or sorority and live at their Greek organization’s house. Off-campus is usually cheaper but further from the action. Greek life is a middle ground of cost and there is probably always something going on, but this might be distracting. Most fraternities will hold big parties at some point. Some do it every week.

College Extracurricular Activities

Extracurricular activities are a great way to meet friends, have a great time, and discover a new passion. You’ll want to schedule time for at least one of these at some point. If you like singing, try an a cappella group. If you’d like to work out, do a class at the gym or try a martial art. Do you like sports, but don’t want to do the whole varsity college athlete thing? Join a club or play intramural sports.

Keep in mind the things at college that might happen on short notice such as free concerts or movie screenings. Maybe your one of your classes is hosting a guest lecturer. There’s something strangely fun about seeing your morning class professor and peers at night and discussing Plato or dinosaurs that have been dead for millions of years.

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